Carnitas' Snack Shack (American (New), Burgers, American (Traditional))

4.37 out of 5 based on 26 ratings | about our ratings

Location Info

2632 University Avenue
San Diego, CA 92104
(619) 294-7675

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Restaurant Tags

counter, north park, pig, pork
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Comment card by calarcon
calarcon (80)
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Newbie (1)
Food
Service
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  (5 overall)
Reviewed on 1/29/2015


Fantastic Food, Fantastic Staff and relaxing location. If you get here about 4:30 PM there is no line. The staff is friendly and really helpful. The Poutine is to die for!


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Comment card by sunstache
sunstache (758)
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Competent (6)
Food
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  (4.33 overall)
Reviewed on 10/3/2013


I have had the pleasure of frequenting this Temple of Pork on many occasions. Each time I am blown away. I highly recommend the BLT. This is truly the king of all other BLTs. Bacon, crispy ham, lettuce, tomato and shack aioli between brioche bread. What more could you ask for?

Only one time could I actually finish the whole sandwich, and I was definitely in a food coma for the rest of the day. This is not a place you stop by once a week, as the food is very rich and it takes at least 10 days for the pork essence to leave your body after each sitting. When you have friends in town you want to impress, or self proclaimed foodies, definitely put this on your radar. I am happy that San Diego has a place like this, and I think most people who love pork will agree that this place is excellent.

One of the downsides is that you do have to wait in line to order if you come at the wrong time, so don't plan on making it a fast visit, but you will be deliciously rewarded for your patience.

And now that the seating area has been updated,


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Comment card by foodiebruce
foodiebruce (1294)
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Counselor (8)
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  (4.33 overall)
Reviewed on 4/30/2013


Carnitas Snack shack has become one of my favorite places to stop and have some lunch.The only unfortunate issue is the line which is always there. That being said,It is ALWAYS worth the wait.
Triple threat sandwich is indescribably delicious! The combo of 3 different types of pig is truly decadent! And, as someone who has a big appetite,I can usually just finish the sandwich. The pork belly is a great way to begin, though I could never finish both that and the the triple threat in one sitting.
A third item that I had previously which I would also rate highly, though slightly below the triple threat, is the steak sandwich. Also excellent,with a nice cut of steak and fresh ingredients.
Go there on a nice day, which is most days in San Diego, since you will be sitting outside to enjoy your food.If you happen to like your food spicy,which I do,there are always a number of different hot sauces. Enjoy!!


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Comment card by jeph
jeph (70980)
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Distinguished ... (28)
Food
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  (4.33 overall)
Reviewed on 3/25/2013


It took a several months and multiple attempts, but I finally got a chance to check out Carnitas Snack Shack today. For those who don't know CSS will be found on almost any "best restaurant in San Diego" themed list that you'll find. Not to mention that, not unlike Comic Con, there is almost always a line (this is why it took me a few trips to try it out).

The menu is succinct and dead pig is definitely the star of the show - in fact all but four items featured a pork product of some ilk. The decision was not easy, but I went with the Shack Pork Sandwich. It has not one...not two, but three styles of pork (schnitzel, carnitas, and bacon) along with some aioli and pepper relish. One bite into this masterpiece was like heaven. The magic was in the perfect balance of smokey flavor matched with the perfectly toasted bun. The corn relish that on the side offered a refreshing bite of balance.

On the side, I grabbed the spicy fries. Nothing special in the fries (they were good, but about what you'd expect) but the ketchup was homemade. It was very fresh, but a bit mild for me as served (not at all what you get from the supermarket). No problem, there are a variety of hot sauces around to give it a kick.

One thing to point out about CSS is that the experience was slow. Aside from the previously mentioned line, the food took a while to come out. Oh well, I guess you can't rush perfection. Maybe go on a day when you don't have to be back to work too soon or don't want to be late for a movie.

As far as the ordering experience, you place your order at the front counter and if you're staying there to eat, you get a number and hunker down in their outside patio. The area is nice with a good bit of community seating as well as smaller tables.

Carnitas Snack Shack served up some exquisite cuisine and pretty much lived up to the hype. I had no trouble finding street parking. If you haven't made it there yet, definitely give it a try.


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