Walter Mencken 11 a.m., May 24
The Tacoburger: Part Four
At the Tin Can Ale House, Dood's Foods innovates the tacoburger still further.
If taco shops can take ownership over hamburgers, what’s to say that hamburger shops can’t take charge with some tacos, or, more precisely, burritos? Dood’s Foods at the Tin Can Alehouse in Bankers Hill (1863 5th Avenue, 619-381-2756) doesn’t see a problem with it. Their “California burgito” blends the ‘Murican standard cheeseburger (Eagles! Fireworks! Trucks! Guns!) with San Diego’s first daughter of border cuisine, the California burrito.
This is really not the same thing as Burger King’s latest oeuvre, which is disingenuously advertised as some sort of revolutionary notion, as if humanity hasn’t been shoving fries inside burritos and other sandwiches for ages! As a point of fact, fast food joints are at the very bottom of the chain of innovation.
The concept is simple enough: ground beef patty griddled on the flattop, fries, avocado, cheese, and salsa. The bun of choice is a bready bolilla roll, like the torta burger at Ponce’s, but a bit crustier, and dry enough to soak up the juices that leak from the burger with every bite. Best of all, the good guys at Dood’s Foods sell the burgito, and all their other burgers for less than ten dollars. With fries. That’s a step up in price on Benny’s, but a fair deal compared to Ponce’s extravagant creation. Being located within the confines of the popular Tin Can means two things for Dood’s Foods:
1) Burgers and sliders for bar guests there to see bands play! 2) Affordable cans of beer to accompany said burgers!
On the second point, it’s worth mentioning that the bar has plenty of Coke and iced tea for the lunch crowd, who may not want to get back to work all sleepy and hazy from two PBRs.
The California burgito is a weird, lateral movement for tacoburger culture. If San Diego’s taco shops have put their own spin on hamburgers over the years--proving they have done so is the entire point of this exploration--Dood’s Foods makes a significant push to even further localize this phenomenon. California burritos are San Diego’s gastronomical offspring. Mating them with another SoCal favorite yields something even more idiosyncratic, and at the same time beautiful.