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SPECIAL TOPICS: Taco TuesdayDisneylandMenudoMexican Flavors on the High Seas

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Rita's Baja Blenders &
Mission Tortilla Factory


Location: The Pacific Wharf area of Disney's California Adventure

I thought I had covered all the Mexican food there was to cover at the Disneyland Resort but have learned that there is still some more. This particular review is going to cover two places that have things to ingest and imbibe while not actually serving "meals."

Rita's Baja Blenders

Official Site

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Rita's Baja Blenders is a little hut (actually it's an "old water tower from an abandoned fishing warehouse") that serves nothing but margaritas; two alcoholic varieties for either $6.79 or $7.29 or non-alcoholic for $4.99. They come in lemon-lime or strawberry while the non-alcoholic also has flavors of the month.

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One time I was there as California Adventure was about to close and Rita's had already been closed for a while. I noticed another Disneyland visitor go up to Rita's and start banging on their aluminum windows apparently hoping that someone inside would open up and give him a margarita. Eventually he gave up and walked away but about ten minutes later I saw him back there again asking a Disneyland janitor if Rita's was going to open up. I guess this place has its fans.

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As seen above they can give you two flavors at once, perhaps even three. My non-alcoholic margarita here is Blue Hawaiian on the top and strawberry on bottom.

Mission Tortilla Factory

Official Site

UPDATE: This attraction has closed.

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The nearby Mission Tortilla Factory aims to teach Disneyland guests a little about Mexican history in the state of California and about tortillas as an early (and current) food staple.

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This is basically a self-guided tour that usually starts with a three minute introductory video but I have gone a few times when the video wasn't playing.

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You'll also see a number of murals on the tour:

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The next room after the video intro has viewing ports set at different heights that you can peer into and see some holographic videos of tortilla-making through the centuries. My camera didn't do them justice so you will just have to see them for yourself.

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You then enter the production line where there is a machine on the right that makes flour tortillas and one on the left that makes corn tortillas. You can have a sample of whatever kind they happen to be making when you are there. Personally I favor storebought flour tortillas over storebought corn tortillas, but the contrast blurs when the tortillas are handmade.

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One "cast member" told me that if you come on your birthday you are given a special treat. I have been told that the special treat may be a whole dozen freshly made tortillas but I will have to wait until later in the year to find out.

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Just beyond the two machines is a demonstration kitchen where artsy Mexican food with a Disney spin is cooked in the morning then displayed the rest of the day. Sorry, you can't eat it; at least I am told you are not allowed to eat it. Every time I have been there have been different items on display, many of which are pictured below.

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They also have recipe cards available for free of different Mission recipes, some of which are actually for Mexican dishes. I have seen four different recipe cards there.

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Before you exit you can weigh yourself on the tortilla scale. Yes, it gives your weight in tortillas, but it doesn't say if it's corn or flour tortillas or what size. I mean, when I go to the market and look at the Mission tortilla section some are big ones for burritos and some are smaller ones for gorditas, amongst other sizes.

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Despite my confusion as to exactly which type of tortilla I was being compared to I weighed in at 2240 tortillas . . . but I'm trying to work down to 2080 tortillas.

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If you're at California Adventure and you want a tasty history lesson and a quick break from the rides take a couple minutes to do the Mission Tortilla Factory tour. On another DCA note, I found out that the nearby Cocina Cucamonga will be moving to this spot that used to be the Lucky Fortune Cookery:

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Click here to see the complete album (42 photos) at ; more photos can be found at the DaveLand website.

4 comments:

Griffin said...

You need to ask for a free birthday button and wear it into the tortilla factory to get your free bag of tortillas. You can get the free birthday button at Customer Service. Most of the stores have them by request as well.

ChristianZ said...

Thanks for the info. I guess you'd want to pick up your bag of tortillas on your way out of DCA.

Nate-n-Annie said...

Great site!

I missed out on the tortilla factory the last time we were at DCA.

Thanks for adding us as a friend on Foodbuzz. We welcome you to come visit our site!

ChristianZ said...

Thanks for the comment. I saw a number of Hawaiian and Mexican items on your blog that I want to look into more. I actually lived in Hawaii for a while.