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Don’t be alarmed that this place is a partial offshoot of Caliente Cab Co., one of the city’s most notorious (and notoriously bad) margarita mills: The food at Union Square’s Tortaria is about a zillion times better. Not that it attempts too much—the bedrock of the menu is a series of the Mexican sandwiches called tortas, here rendered on small brioche rolls rather than the oblong telera bread. Fillings, not all of them doctrinaire, run to chicken milanese, pulled pork, and crispy eggplant, the latter one of several vegetarian options on the menu. Then there are tacos, soups, salads, and sides. But the real treasure of Tortaria, which is rather charmingly decorated and has a nice layout featuring plenty of window seating, are the off-price drinks, especially a straight-up margarita that regales you with plenty of alcohol. With drinks this good and cheap, the food feels almost like an afterthought. Like its sire, Caliente Cab Company, Tortaria might be considered a margarita mill, too—only the gastropub version of it.
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