Wow. This corner. Market and 25th.
Every time I come up and over the hump here, seems like this place has a different eatery.
Think it was a tamale place, an Urban Chicken place, an Adalberto's…see that’s shifted across the road, kitty-corner.
But now, it‘s looking different. Refreshed. Where they had barred windows, now they’ve cut the danged windows clear out and made it all kinda inside-outside.
Above the window spaces they have chalkboards. And the first thing I read is “Surf & Turf Burger: Garlic shrimp and cream cheese stuffed burger topped with orange sweet & sour.”
And next to it: “Coconut crusted fish on a GC salad with cranberries, goat cheese and raspberry vinaigrette.”
Guess that "GC" stands for “Goat Cheese.”
So hey, we’re talking gourmet stuff here.
Man. Tempted by the surf and turf.
Inside it’s industrial chic. Shiny vertical corrugated aluminum, on one side, yellow on the other, yellow seat cushions, yellow and black counter. Polished plank tables. Shelves stuffed with every hot sauce you ever saw.
Elizabeth, the gal at the counter, gives me the menu. “San Diego’s stuffed burger and taco joint,” it says.
Basically we’re talking burgers, tacos and salads.
“The funny thing is that mostly it’s the Anglos asking for the tacos and the Mexicans who ask for the burgers,” says the other guy here, Jason.
Me, even though the tacos are like $2.50 and the burgers are around $10, I can’t resist the idea of a stuffed burger. Is this new or what? It is for me. They have everything from “El Diablo,” stuffed with jalapeño, spiced Monterey Jack and bacon ($10) to the Black and Bleu (blackened spiced burger patty stuffed with blue cheese, caramelized onions, and mushrooms, $10).
So kinda like Burger Lounge prices, except here you get your fries included, not as extras.
But I go for my first love, the surf and turf ($10). Then I decide to order up and Black and Bleu to take back to the beautiful Carla at the ranch.
Man, with this sun streaming through the open sides, I could go for a sunset beer. But alas, Jason says they’ve applied for a wine and beer license but it’s probably a couple of months away.
So five minutes, and out comes da steaming boiger.
Oh, now I get it. The middle of the meat patty is actually stuffed with the shrimp. Co-ool. And the garlicky shrimp taste really comes through. It's a mess. A beautiful mess. Creamy, herby, sweet, sour, and those marinated onions add their slick sweetness.
Except I can't help wondering what I'm missing from the to-go package of the Black and Bleu...
Post report: I think Carla got the best deal. My surf and turf was good, but in a delicate way. Her black and bleu really socked it to ya with a rich, deep sweet’n sour thing, from the one bite I got.
“Rich,” she says. “Too rich.”
Dang. No way too rich for me. Wish I’d swapped the burgers when I could.
More in upcoming Tin Fork.