San Diego Fish Tacos with the Intern

 

So I’m down in San Diego again, for a birthday and a bit of a holiday season spell. It’s the first time in awhile that I have been able to go home longer than a second, so I’ve had the chance to settle down and relax over the last week. I have been to some great new restaurants in the area, but nothing satisfies me more then grabbing one of my old favorites – fish tacos.

mmm...fish tacos

 

Now, I know to most of you Nor-Cal or out-of-state peeps this may sound disgusting. You’re picturing a fried salmon head in a tortilla or fish guts wrapped in flour, right? Trust me, there is a lot more greatness to fish tacos then meets the mind’s eye.

Traditional tacos are filled with cod [halibut and mahi mahi have been used as well], which is lightly breaded and then fried. They’re placed in warm, corn tortillas and topped with cabbage, salsa, and what many San Diegans call “white sauce” – there are many variations of it, but its basically a delicious cream sauce that you should devour without question.

Now, everyone in San Diego knows that the best fish tacos are found – not surprisingly – over the border. I have made many weekend trips with my dad and my friends and have gotten wasted on the light, fantastic beer and have eaten so many of these things its surprising that I’m not sick of them. In Mexico, many places sell them, made with fresh fish, for around $.50. Did you read that correctly? $.50! But because of the growing governmental tensions and increased security around the exit and entrance to Tijuana, many of us have not paid a visit in some time.

So, my goal before I left SD was to find a cheap, delicious and happening fish taco joint that would blow the rest out of the water and provide me with sanctuary until I was able to slide over south again.

Enter El Zarape!

El Zarape is the shit!

 

Located in the hipstery University Heights area of San Diego, this place knows how to pack a fish taco punch. For only $.99, you get one of the best fish taco’s I’ve ever had in the U.S., and probably the best I’ve ever had at a restaurant. They don’t over fry, over batter or over compensate with the cream sauce, such as many other places do. This place is always packed, so its best to call in your order and get it to go if you’re in a hurry. It also isn’t very warm on the inside, but since its rarely cold in San Diego, its not really an issue!  Seating is limited and the parking is street parking, but it is all worth it for a great taco. They have lobster tacos, scallop tacos, fish tacos and all of the per usual — carne asada, carnitias…its making my mouth water just thinking about it! They also offer vegetarian and vegan dishes that are straight up amazing – the potato taco was to die for! [And still only $2.50!]

Lobster tacos are amazing!

 

Next time you’re in San Diego, or if you have no idea what is up, get your ass to El Zarape for some deliciousness, pronto! I’m heading back to the Bay in a few hours – stay tuned for more intern updates in the near future!

 

-Monica the Intern

 

PS: If you’re in the City and you can’t get your broke ass down south anytime soon, try El Metate for the best tacos I’ve ever had in the city. Reasonably priced, it’ll hold you over until you get to Zarape.

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About the author

Monica Miller - The Intern

Ms. Miller was born in San Diego, CA to one lesbian mother and one righteous, cheap father. Currently, she is enrolled at San Francisco State University for a B.A. in Journalism and the approximate completion date is around 2015. She has worked for many papers in the Bay Area, including the Oakland Tribune and the San Mateo Country Times and is currently the city editor at one of the most underappreciated publications in SF, the Golden Gate [X]press. Though she may find bargains aplenty, it only stems from the necessity of never landing an actual job and working for hacks [like Stuart.] With intelligence, style, poise, bite, and honesty, she will rip your heart out; but not before writing some awesome, poignant shit. This year, she is looking forward to bigger and better things such as: trying to get paid for a gig, actually finding a date that isn't a loser or fucking crazy, not calling her parents when hungover and bringing you the best of the 7x7 everyday of the week. [By the way, I wasn't kidding about the date thing; if you love food, booze and shoegaze, get at me.]