Saturday, September 24, 2011

Senor Sisig - Tocilog Burrito

As much as I love to be on vacation, I also love returning home. Why? Because home means food trucks! Okay, I was in Boston where there are also a slew of food trucks, but time prohibited me from eating at any of them. Alas, I experienced serious street food withdrawal. Seeing that Thursday's Off the Grid was a sort of welcome back celebration, I decided to eat one of my favorite food truck dishes: the Tocilog Burrito from Senor Sisig. In just one bite I was reminded of why Senor Sisig was voted the 2011 Favorite Food Truck by SF Weekly readers and why the Tocilog makes me and my taste buds happy!

The first time I tried the Tocilog was a few months ago at an extremely busy Off the Grid where the lines for every truck were over 30 people deep. It was one of those rare warm summer nights, and residents were out in full force. I actually had a craving for fried chicken at 3-SUM EATS but couldn't deal with waiting in what was the longest line of the night. So after aimlessly wandering around in circles, not feeling particularly strongly about any other food besides the fried chicken that I wanted, I queued up in the Senor Sisig line. I was pretty grumpy because I couldn't satiate my fried chicken craving, but I figured that whatever I chose from my favorite Filipino food truck would at least be tasty.

(A quick note on me and my cravings to put this all into context: If I desire a particular food, and it's often fried chicken, I want that and ONLY that, and I am not satisfied until I get it!)

I chose the Tocilog Burrito because it was Senor Sisig's special of the evening (they call it "Tocilog Thursdays"), but already the odds were against it because I was still thinking about that fried chicken. One bite in, however, and my desire for chicken flew the coop! My initial apathy towards my burrito quickly faded as I tasted some of the most flavorful and delicious pork I have ever had. The more I ate, the more I realised that the Tocilog was exactly what I wanted that evening, and it now has the distinction of being one of the very few items that has ever satisfied me when I was craving something else. I was hooked on the Tocilog!

The depth of flavors was evident as soon as I sunk my teeth into the hefty burrito. The sweet pork dominated that first bite, and it was juicy, tender and fragrant. The burrito was chock full of these delicious, bite sized pieces of grilled pork accented by adobo rice, fresh tomatoes and the item that makes it a "Silog"—a fried egg. It was served with a side of sweet white vinegar.

While the centerpiece of the Tocilog Burrito was definitely the pork, all of the components were necessary to complement and highlight one another. The adobo rice was nutty and earthy, providing a neutral base to accentuate the sweetness of the pork. The tomatoes brought acidity and tanginess to contrast against the pork's sweetness and added another layer of complexity and texture. Finally, the (sometimes) runny fried egg coated the burrito with its yolk and made it saucy and moist. For an added kick, I drizzled the vinegar in my burrito as I ate. Even though I was quite full when I was done, the taste lingered. I wanted more!

Senor Sisig has a lot of interesting items on their menu, including many that incorporate french fries, but the Tocilog confidently stands on top as their best. It's consistently good every time I have had it, and it has unique flavors that stand out both independently and as a package. When I get asked for recommendations by newbies to the food truck scene, the Tocilog Burrito is often my answer, and I have yet to meet someone who wasn't equally as impressed as I am. The Tocilog is not a regular menu item, but Senor Sisig does seem to have it quite often. For its cravings-busting powers, the Tocilog Burrito from Senor Sisig deserves a perfect rating!

Rating: 5/5 (ratings guide)

Senor Sisig (@senorsisig) $8.00 for one burrito

Senor Sisig (Mobile Truck) on Urbanspoon

Does reading this make you want to try this vendor? Tell them that you saw them at I Left My Cart in San Francisco and support San Francisco street cuisine!

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