by Julie Besonen, 07/21/2010
Photo: Jason Lam (via Flickr)
76-05 Roosevelt Ave., 718-424-1977, Jackson Heights, Queens
The Mexican cemita is the more robust and complex cousin of the torta. What better place to wrap your mouth around one than at the authentic Coatzingo (named for a town in the state of Puebla, where the sandwich originated)? The round, seeded buns come from Coatzingo's bakery down the block, ensuring freshness. They're stuffed with meat, mozzarella-like Mexican cheese, avocado, lettuce and tomato, plus a smear of refried beans and smoky chipotle. Breaded chicken or breaded beef are the most classic—the meat pliant, the heat lip-tingling, the crunch of lettuce juxtaposed with the creaminess of the avocado. The 7 train rumbles overhead (the Flushing and Jamaica lines converge here), making this humble, friendly, delicious taquería an accessible destination.