A fusion burrito, filled with longanisa sausage, fried egg, Chamorro red rice, Asian salad, and pork lumpia
I spotted the photo in a friend’s Twitter feed, and almost scrolled past. Another photo of a San Diego-rolled burrito, nothing new about that, right? But then the word lumpia caught my eye, and I took a closer look. Sure enough, there it was, just inside the edge of the tortilla: a pork lumpia, rolled into a burrito featuring fried eggs, French fries, and longanisa sausage. This was not your average burrito.
1550 E H St #J, Chula Vista
As I’ve since learned, it bears the name #805south burrito. And yes, the hashtag is part of its name, at least, as it appears on the menu of MJ’s Fusion Deli. Which is also called MJ’s Yogurt Time & Deli, according to the sign out front.
The hashtag tells me the burrito is supposed to make the rounds on social media, but that wasn’t about to stop me from driving into Chula Vista to see it for myself. I found the small counter shop across the street from Southwestern College, in a student-friendly shopping center that is likewise home to a pizza shop, wings shop, and Taco Bell.
There was a frozen yogurt shop next to my college too, but it didn’t serve burritos, and it definitely didn’t create an entire menu fusing Mexican and American dishes with various Pacific Islander cuisines including Hawaiian, Filipino, and Guamanian.
This place makes street tacos dressed with Asian slaw and “seaweed sesame seeds;” sliders assembled on pan de sal rolls; and a take-off of the Hawaiian egg, rice, and gravy breakfast, loco moco, which includes the option to replace the hamburger patty with a salmon patty. That one’s called #FoShoko, which I mistook as an obscure weed reference, but the folks at MJ’s insist it’s insignificant. We might have to ask the kids at Southwestern to be sure.
A yogurt plus islander fusion shop near Southwestern College
Kind of like how a California burrito can be inverted to create carne asada fries, the #805south can be made into a dirty fries dish. And though the sweet and spicy Filipino longanisa is said to be the most popular protein added to the special, MJ’s actually presents a long list of meat options, including apple and pear glazed beef, soy-ginger-garlic marinated pork, seared chicken, and deep fried Alaskan pollack.
A swirl of ube and avocado frozen yorgurts
Lured by my friend’s photo, I had my heart set on longanisa, but when I got to the shop I realized I didn’t really want the #805south, but a different burrito special called the #671par burrito, where 671 refers to the area code of Guam, and par refers to a friendly nickname maybe a little more familiar than Southern California’s dude. This burrito features eggs and lumpia, but in place of French fries is Chamorro red rice, a Guamanian staple that colors a stock or bacon-fat flavored rice with annatto (a.k.a. achiote).
The #805south burrito may be the more popular order (it’s even used as the URL for MJ’s web site) , but I’m thinking the most important thing here is that there was some tasty pork lumpia adding heft to this $13 burrito. And, yes, $13 sounds like a lot for a college adjacent yogurt-slash-burrito shop, but in truth it’s part of a combo: the burrito comes with a drink, and a frozen yogurt. I opted for a photogenic, purple and pale green swirl combining ube and avocado yogurts. And honestly, MJ’s, I think you need to come up with a hashtag for that.