Eat This: Achiote Pork Torta at Local Foods

Pork Torta
Pork Torta
Photo by Joanna O'Leary

Perhaps in an attempt to avoid becoming a cookie-cutter restaurant chain, Local Foods offers slightly different menus at its  two Houston locations.  Fortunately, the ever-popular Crunchy Chicken and Truffled Egg Salad Sandwiches are available at both branches. However, another standout savory treat can only be had at the Local Foods on Kirby: the Achiote Pork Torta.

The word "torta" designates different dishes depending on the culinary context; in some countries, including Spain, a torta is a type of sweet cake, while in the Philippines, this term describes a type of omelet.  Local Foods' torta refers to neither but instead that of the Mexican flatbread sandwich. 

There are no shortage of Houston establishments that offer terrific tortas, so do not take this positive review as tacit endorsement of Local Foods' version at the exclusion of all others. But its torta nevertheless deserves a shout-out for its wonderfully strata of flavor.

Layered atop fresh bolillo bread (itself a wonderful combination of crusty exterior and soft fleshy dough interior) is a generous mound of supple shredded pork, spiced with the achiote seed, ripe avocado, cilantro, and pineapple chips. A creamy, slightly peppery aioli adds moisture to what is already a relatively 'wet' sandwich, so keep your napkins at the ready.

The pork torta makes for a lovely weekday lunch and if you're of the mindset that's it always five o'clock somewhere, pair it with a kombucha margarita.

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