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“Unbelievable meals for pork lovers!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Carnitas' Snack Shack

Carnitas' Snack Shack
2632 University Avenue, San Diego, CA
6192947675
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Ranked #10 of 4,161 Restaurants in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Cuisines: American
Dining options: Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night
La Mesa, CA
Top Contributor
141 reviews 141 reviews
89 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
“Unbelievable meals for pork lovers!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

Carnitas' Snack Shack is a tiny gem tucked away where you'd least expect it! They recently remodeled and added a garden and more tables, as it used to be quite difficult to sit down! They also have a beer license now and offer many micro brews. On a large grill out back you can watch your meal being cooked! My all time fav is the Triple Threat Pork Sandwich, with pork belly, pulled pork and bacon! The pork belly appetizer is to die for, also! You can't eat there w/o ordering their delicious fries with bacon ketchup! And this trip I splurged and got the bacon ice cream sandwich! Talk about decadent. Whether ordering their carnitas, or any other pork item on the menu, you will be raving about this place to your friends!

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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150 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    101
    42
    5
    1
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Los Angeles, California
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
“Grease needed to be drained off a bit more”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2013 via mobile

I really wanted to like this place more. It's a hip place and the flavors were good. It was just too greasy for me. The carnitas need to be drained more. Plus, being hip, it was a little pricey. I liked the beet terrine a lot and I want to go back and give them another try. It's nice that they have beer and wine, too. And a gluten free beer option for the wife! Big points for that! Maybe i should give a three and a half.

Visited June 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
coronado
Top Contributor
121 reviews 121 reviews
73 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
“Yummy pig”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2013

Three of us trekked to North Park to try this place and it was worth it, despite having to wait in a (short but slow) line in the hot sun. We arrived at 11.50 and there was less of a line when we left, but also no seats left. We had the carnitas tacos, which were very tasty and full of meat. The beet spinach and goat cheese terrine was good, but a bit small for the price (there were also a couple of spinach stems in there; all stems need to be removed from spinach in my view). The dark chocolate whisky bacon truffles were sublime. What we did not like: people from further back in line going in and reserving tables with sunglasses etc. (management should stop this), the flies, and the table-bussing cartons placed right in front of the knives and forks. The servers need to be the ones handling the cartons of dirty dishes, and they should be stored somewhere out of sight, rather than out in the open in front of the customers.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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West Des Moines, Iowa
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Craving Carnita”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2013

Although my children sometimes don't want to expand their palettes, we ordered the tacos for them-they loved them without any of the toppings or sauces, so yes just plain pork tacos, but we ate their pico and it as fabulous! I had the steak sandwich which I found a little tough, but I also like my beef med rare. My hubby had e triple threat, and after hassling the kids with their food, was able to gobble it down, and enjoyed it thoroughly.

I really enjoyed the side of corn relish or corn slaw. I thought it was a very unique and tasty addition to this style if meal. After site-seeing all day, we could have used a restroom to freshen up, and one was not obvious, but we also didn't ask. We were able to park n a side street and had easy access thro a sort of alley way or between two properties.

Worth your time and money. Check it out.

Visited June 2013
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North Hollywood
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Loved It!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2013

My family and I were visiting San Diego and I found this place thru tripadvisor and we loved it. We arrived 20 minutes early and we're glad we did. A line was already forming and it wasn't even open. My husband placed the order while my kids and I held an outdoor patio table. It took about 20 minutes for the food to come after he placed the order but it was well worth it. I got two carnitas tacos and they were huge and full of meat. They were topped with fresh tomatoes and a delicious heap of fresh guacamole. The man that brought them out was quick yet friendly and helpful. My only complaint was that it could've used a little more salt. (I had to ask for some on the side).

It's an outdoor atmosphere. As it says, it is a shack but it has an nice outdoor seating area. Parking was a little hard to find. You will have to do some walking and waiting if you want to eat here but it's worth it. It's also very pricey. Two tacos set us back $7 each and there was four of us, so it does add up. The french fries were awesome!

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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