Lunchers Report: Certe’s Mexican Torta

Photo courtesy of Lunch’er Wayne

Last week two Midtown Lunch’ers sampled the newly introduced Mexican Torta from Certe (on 55th btw. 5+6th) and reported back. First, the tempered enthusiasm:

“Decided to try out the Sirloin Mexican Torta at Certe today. It looked delicious when I was picking it up and I think I was drooling all the way back to the office. The sandwich was decent-sized and came with a dill pickle on the side. My one complaint is that they skimped on the sirlion beef – I definitely would have liked more beef and less avocado. Other than that, it was quite tasty; not as good as last month’s Primavera but very good nonetheless. -Tanman”

Unbridled excitement, via Lunch’er Wayne, is after the jump.

“The Mexican Torta doesn’t look like much in the case. I was momentarily swayed to go Thanksgiving Dip instead, but held firm. I’m glad I did.

Tender grill-flavored perfectly done beef: Check. Savory queso : Check. A lovely melange of chopped tomato & red onion (more a sprinkle than a spread of pico de gallo): Check. Thick-sliced jalapeno for zing & crunch: Check. Avocado for fat & smoothness: Check. A thin spread of creamy dressing, barely there, which is actually the right amount: Check. A forgettable roll that actually works perfectly for this particular sandwich: Check.

This baby is less fat-bomb and belly-buster and more about being a perfectly executed, hi quality execution of a great sandwich. Is it a Duck Pastrami bitchslap upside your head? No. Is it delicious and great to eat? Absolutely.

The one word I would use to describe it : INHALE-ABLE

For $9.70 with tax, very nice. I think Certe & Free Foods not only get points for participating & getting the spirit of the Challenge right, they also have raised the bar for sandwiches in Midtown. It’ll be hard to go back to ‘wichcraft again, and totally forget about places like Cafe Duke, etc. Certe just proved again that for under $10 they can take places like that to school.


  • Is Green Cafe still 50% off today?

  • I have to mention that I had a Torta at Baja Fresh in Jersey last night. It was chicken, tomato, avacado, cheese sauce and lettuce on a good roll. They give you a side of some sort of spicy sauce if you want to spice it up a bit. I really enjoyed it.

    Can’t wait for BF to open.

  • Tanman got shortchanged on steak? Not me. This is the second time I got a lucky super-size of meat in my sandwich.

    I previously got so much duck pastrami it could’ve choked Sarah Jessica Parker

  • I had Left over Sunday Roast Beef with homemade horseradish on crusty baguette.

    But that looks better……wayne theres loads of beef on that!….stop being a greedy bloody yank.

  • Oh my god I want Certe to open downtown and participate in this challenge here. That looks frikkin phenomenal. Thanks for sharing wayne

  • that sandy looks medicore at best

  • yeah, i know it’s a midtown thing, but ten bucks for that? much heftier tortas, with all the accoutrements tortas should have, for five bucks in brooklyn and queens…

  • Wayne, solid review and great point about the welcomed (and successful) efforts of places like Certe and Free Foods… they’ve been really innovative while also achieving some fantastic flavors… exactly as the Midtown Lunch Sandwich Challenge was designed to inspire. Thanks Zack!

  • Great write up wayne! That does look amazing. I LOVE avocado and I’m glad they didn’t skimp on it.

  • PS.. yeah it’s $10 bucks but you are getting sirloin, not cheap grizzled meat. Quality ingredients.

  • Thanks M – and the sirloin must be from a magical moooutant cow as it was amazingly tender, yet had the flavorful beefy goodness of grilled flank steak

    Deb, The trucks on Roosevelt Ave in queens do great cheaper ones but good luck getting there & back on the 7 burro er, I mean train in an hour

  • wayne, no argument there.

    but if you try the E or F to roosevelt/74 — the epicenter of tortacular goodness, you can get there and back in 40 mins from rock ctr and environs. done it many a time, since that’s my home stop.

  • Deb, next time you go, do pick me up a shrimp ceviche at Mini-Picanteria el Guayaquileno on Roosevelt and 80th.!

  • I tried it and it was pretty good. Could of either used more sirloin or they should have charged a buck less. Definitely not as good as the Thanksgiving Dip.

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