Location: 933 St. Clair Avenue West, Toronto
I seem to be focusing disproportionately on Spanish-speaking countries so far. This is completely unintentional; I’ll have to try to mix it up for the next few countries. But first: Mexico.
I mostly wanted to try Tenoch to sample one of their tortas, a popular Mexican street food that basically entails cramming as much food as possible into a crusty roll.
We started, however, with the chorinachos, which finds delicious house-made tortilla chips layered with a crumbled, mild sausage (chorizo, I think), refried beans, sour cream, and enough melty cheese to feed a small family. Though it was immediately apparent that we had over-ordered (this imposing pile of food is more than enough to feed two very hungry people on its own), these nachos were so good that we were happy to overindulge.
Two sauces were provided: the first was a bright green mix of seriously spicy hot peppers and avocado, and the second a creamy brown hot sauce that was one of the tastiest sauces I’ve had in quite a while. It had a rich, smoky flavour and an addictively fiery spice-level. It was amazing.
I asked the waitress what it was, because seriously: I want to eat this all the time on everything. Sadly, the answer (the name of the pepper the sauce is made from) pretty much went in one ear and out the other. It was a lot of words, and it was Spanish, and I should have written it down but I didn’t, like an idiot. Anyway, they make the sauce in the restaurant, so it’s not like I could have gone to the supermarket and picked up a bottle.
Whatever that stuff was, it was profoundly delicious, and if you come here and they don’t give it to you, you need to ask for it. That might be tough without knowing what it’s called, but trust me, make it happen. You won’t regret it.
Next up was the main course: the Tenoch Torta, described on the menu as coming with “tomato, onion, beans, avocado, mayo, cheese, shredded roast chipotle pork, ham, milanesa, egg, pastrami, and wiener sausage.”
Yep, it’s all in there. Everything. Don’t even think about ordering this sandwich on your own. My dining companion and I split one, and each half on its own was the size of one enormous sandwich. When you first pick it up, the weight of it shocks you. It’s gigantic.
It’s also delicious, if a bit overstuffed (shocking, right?). There’s just so much food in there, and though it’s all tasty (the chipotle pulled pork stands out as a highlight), I think there’s probably a little bit too much stuff going on.
Just eating it was a challenge. There’s only so wide that you can open your mouth, and even taking your biggest, most exaggerated Guy-Fieri-style bite, you’re not going to be able to cram it all in there.
Like the nachos, this would have been more than enough to feed two hungry people, and like with the nachos, I was very happy to overindulge. This is top-shelf Mexican food. I can’t wait to go back.