No. 77, Carne en Su Jugo at La Cocina de Mi Abuelita
Dave Lieberman

No. 77, Carne en Su Jugo at La Cocina de Mi Abuelita

From now until OC Weekly's Best Of issue comes out, Stick a Fork In It will be counting down one hundred of our favorite dishes in the county--one dish we think you should be eating each day until the magnum opus is published.
La Cocina de Mi Abuelita is a bizarre, bizarre place. Inside, it looks like a Johnny Rockets impostor threw up on the walls... and the floor... and the ceiling. It's the sort of place you think should serve crappy wan hamburgers on tiny buns and twenty-five cent sock water labeled "coffee", but it's actually a hidden Mexican gem.

The owners are from Jalisco, the Texas of Mexico--and while other tapatíos who own restaurants go in for carnitas or tortas ahogadas, La Cocina de Mi Abuelita specializes in carne en su jugo. That doesn't translate well into English--meat in its juice--but it doesn't need to: thin, tender beef, crisped-then-braised bacon, and beans braised in green chile, smooth as silk. Add homemade tortillas--which you should request and pay the dollar or so upcharge for--and the usual accoutrements of onions, cilantro, radishes, etc., and you've got one of the most satisfying meals ever to compete with a burger and fries.

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