I’ve driven by this place enough times, thinking to myself that I should really give it a try some day. Today was that day, just cuz I remembered and had nothing else to do. Plus we really need more food reviews on this site, don’t you think? I’m calling you out, compas! Siganme los hambrientos!
This place has a big fancy looking green awning, and some fancy seats even, but it’s just a casual place where you walk up to a window and place your order. You can barely see the person on the other side. And the “menu” only lists some meats, I guess it’s a one item shop with your choice of ingredient. I don’t partake in chunks off of animals so I scanned for some veggie option. Way at the bottom, a queso blanco option. Careful to not get the “queso de puerco” which is headcheese aka animal bits in a gelatin block. Yuck!
Wait a minute, isn’t most queso blanco? Whatever, I placed my order and paid $5.50 for my cemita and a tamarindo Jarritos. I guess it’s not that bad of a price. And then I sat down and took this spy pic of the dining area. It looks empty now but it had filled up by the time I left.
They have some of those weird and creepy Italian-ish chef statues that seem to be showing up all over the place. Shudder. I was gonna get up and take a better from-the-front pic but ehh, it’s too hot today. A long time ago this place used to be a Tommy’s and of course, I never went there. I mean really, that chili shit looks just like, uhh, something. I guess I prefer a cemitas place.
They don’t give you a number or any sort of receipt, they just call out what you ordered. The “cuatro milanezas” person never showed up, that was weird. The Cha Cha’s that ordered 2 de milaneza and 1 de pollo were ahead of me so I had some way to gauge when mine was coming up. “Una de queso blanco”, came the cry over the intercom. Did people start looking at me funny as I made my way to the pick up window? It kinda felt that way. No worries, in my many days trying to order non-meat food on the Eastside, I’ve learned a thing or two about handling my biz.
My $5.50 meal. Damn, that’s alot of cheese! I’ve had cemitas before, this one looked nicer. But despite the overflowing queso panela, there’s not much else happening on this sandwich. The bread is good and toasty with sesame seeds, and theres a layer of avocado underneath, some pickled jalapenos and a few onions, but that’s it. Sure, cemitas are a fine lunch sandwich, but I can’t get over the thought of eso es todo? I almost got up and asked for some salsa, but it was too hot today. Beside, maybe they don’t have any.
A close up. Cemitas are a specialty of Puebla, and it’s cool that we can get them here now. Most people were ordering the milaneza, since that’s what kept coming out of the intercom. Maybe those make some sense, but I will have to let others find this out. But I’ve yet to be sold on a cemita. It’s a decent tasting sandwich, but it has nothing on a torta.
I guess I’ve just committed myself to doing a torta review. No worries, I know just the place. Pronto, gente, pronto.
There’s lots of parking. That’s worthy of note.
Cemitas La China Poblana
3568 Whittier Blvd
Los Angeles, Ca 90023