If you live in San Diego, you've probably eaten at Roberto's at least once. It seems like they're everywhere. If you do a Google Search on Roberto's Taco Shops, San Diego you come up with 17 matches between Chula Vista and Oceanside. Be careful of imitators, though I understand that there are actually only a few "authentic" Roberto's, whatever that means. I've seen Reyberto's, El Roberto's, Filiberto's, Aiberto's, and countless number of "something"-berto's around. Inexpensive, tasty, greasy, and usually open 24 hours, Roberto's is very popular. The one I usually patronize is on Clairemont Drive, only 4 blocks away, a very scary thing indeed!
This tiny shop is the only 24 operation other than 7-11 for several miles around, and can sometimes be packed to the rafters.
Prices range from $1.75 for 3 Plain rolled Taco's (taquitos) to $6.00 for combination plates. I usually get either the Carne Asada or a "California" Burrito ($3.25), and sometimes the Rolled Tacos. On this trip I got the California Burrito and 3 rolled taco's with sour cream ($2.00).
So what's a California Burrito? Well in this case it's a tortilla filled with Carne Asada, Cheese, and French Fries, yes, you heard that correct french fries! Pretty "politically incorrect" but delicious. I was just thinking; one more starch and this could be a plate lunch! Here's a closer look:
So how was it? Well, the Carne Asada was a little bit dried out, tough, and tasteless today - but the fries were great! In fact I woulda just ordered a french fry burrito if they had one. I like the way the tortilla was prepared, both a little crunchy and yet still with a little "pull", a nice texture. The taquitos were ok, a little too much sour cream glopped on them, and they were a bit smaller than I remember them. But still relatively cheap and filling.
I know alot of people who love Roberto's, especially after a hard night of "liquid refreshment", and in the minds of many San Diegans this is the quintessential "San Diego" chain. Roberto's fills a real niche in San Diego, a place other than Denny's open 24 hours a day.
A last note, I've found that not all Roberto's are created equal, the Solana Beach locale (I've been told that this is one created by the original "Roberto") is by far the best I've been to, Clairemont Mesa the worst in both service and food.
Roberto's Taco Shop
Most open 24 hours daily