Chimichangas are mostly known as a school cafeteria staple, the favorite food of Marvel comic book anti-hero Deadpool, and a funny word to scream at the top of your lungs. Try doing it some time—it’s great!
But chimichangas are actually a gourmet tradition from the state of Sonora where they are known as chivichangas. Much like in the states, they typically exist as fried burritos (a regional name for tacos) filled with meat, sautéed chilies, onions, and tomatoes. Chivichangas, along with handful of other traditional Sonoran specialties like the caramelo (taco with meat and melted cheese), the lorenza (meat and melted cheese on a toasted corn tortilla), and mesquite roasted carne asada on handmade flour tortillas are some of the tasty new items featured at DTLA’s Sonoratown.
The young couple behind the new taqueria, Jennifer Feltham and Sonora-native Teodoro Diaz-Rodriguez, named the restaurant after the first barrio in L.A., Sonoratown, before it later became known as Chinatown. Diaz-Rodriguez and Feltham longed for a taste of Sonora in L.A., so they decided to take matter in their own hands with the help of Teodoro’s sisters, who alternate shifts to ensure that fresh hand rolled flour tortillas are always available.
The cute store-front taqueria is still working out their opening kinks and menu items, and while their carne asada would benefit from higher heat to bring out the flavor of the meat, their chivichanga is an instant hit on the menu. The stew of meat and vegetables is juicy, tender and full of flavor with a soft fried flour tortilla adding richness to the small burrito. This isn’t the stiff, chewy orange bomb you had in high school, this a gourmet tradition done the right way and in the right place: Sonoratown.
Sonoratown, 208 E 8th St., Downtown, (310) 987-6994