Some of the best authentic Mexican food is found in the strangest of places around here. It's not unheard of to find great home-style Mexican food served in the back of a neighborhood market, and that's just what Mexico Tortilla Factory & Deli does. This taqueria has been in business since 1970, and is family owned and operated. The factory is best known for their completely natural and freshly made tortillas. You can taste the difference between these authentic tortillas and the kind you'll find in most stores.
Mexico Tortilla Factory is an unlikely dining destination – a minimart stocked with some basic necessities, but specializing in Mexican goods and everything you need to make a full Mexican meal. A variety of Mexican candy and other Mexican products are near the register, an aisle full of fresh tortillas and chips, another with tortilla presses for making your own tortillas at home, and a deli counter with meats and cheeses.
I probably would never have thought to come here for lunch if it hadn't been recommended by more than a few friends recently. And yet during my time in the shop, I overheard some other customers discussing driving from all around the bay to come to this hidden gem. It's known for its tamales, which I've had for some holiday dinners in the past. The shop even sells masa for those who'd like to assemble their own tamales, and sometimes offers classes on tamale-making.
Mexico Tortilla Factory is best for lunch or picking up ingredients for dinner because of its early closing hours on the weekends, which reminds you that this truly is a family business.
Mexico Tortilla Factory is located in a small neighborhood market on Thornton Avenue in Newark, between Sycamore and Magnolia. Street parking is available, although there are just a few spots out in front, but there are quite a few extra spots if you go around the corner and park on Magnolia Street, where you can access the restaurant via the side entrance.
Address: 7015 Thornton Ave.
Newark, CA 94560
- Monday through Friday 8 am to 7 pm
- Saturday 8 am – 6 pm
- Sunday 8 am – 5 pm
Mission Tortilla Factory and Deli is inside a neighborhood market. A deli counter is situated just inside the doors, the large menu posted above. Along the front windows of the shop are several booths and tables, and guests can help themselves to the chips and salsa bar while they await their order. A TV on the wall often displays whatever sports game is on. Outside, there are several tables that allow for a pleasant afternoon meal. The atmosphere is, not surprisingly, very casual.
While the Tortilla Factory is partly self-service, the folks at the counter are incredibly friendly and helpful. The food came out pretty quickly, even when it was busy, and they bring your food out to your table.
There were so many options on the menu, I didn't know where to begin. I've heard good things about their breakfast burritos (served all day), and I know from experience the tamales are delicious. I eventually settled on the carne asada regular burrito, a beef enchilada, and a side of refried beans. And of course, a refreshing Mexican Coca Cola to wash it all down. We got our chips and a few different salsas to sample while we waited – the pico de gallo and the spicy red salsa were my favorites. The food portions were pretty large, especially for the side of beans. The refried beans were topped with cheese and absolutely delicious, although I think that's because they're made with lard. Whatever, they were up there with the best refried beans I've tasted. The burrito was filling, the meat tender and tasty, although I wished I'd gone with the super burrito, which has some added fillings like cheese, lettuce, and salsa. The enchilada was great – the sauce was flavorful and spicy.
Before we left, we picked up a package of chips and tortillas, and a pound of barbacoa to go, for dinner later this week. We grabbed some horchata as an post-meal treat, and the flavor was perfect. I'll definitely be stopping by Mexico Tortilla Factory for lunch or to pick up some ingredients for dinner again soon.
Published On: Monday, July 29th, 2013