Friday, February 19, 2010

Burritos Suck

I really wanted to get that out there

...I feel better already.

Today I went to lunch at La Costena in Mountain View, a perennial award winner for best burrito, going on 10+ years of best burrito awards if I am not mistaken.  Every time I go here I go for the tacos.  Never ever have I had the burrito.

My weekly exposure to fantastic Mexican food comes mainly from San Francisco's Mission District as I live in the bordering neighborhood of Potrero Hill.  Here I gorge on tasty tamales, super tacos, quesadillas that can last you two meals, crispy taquitos and the staple of chips and salsa.  Perferably some hot salsa that will get sweat beads dripping down your forehead.

But let's get back to the burrito.  I ordered it today at La Costena and the same thing happened that happens every time I order a burrito (which is few and far between).

I walked up to the line looking at all the amazing meats sitting in front of me and being cooked on the grill.  I got excited, told myself to focus on the carne asada and place the order before I changed my mind to another meat selection.

From there I watched my carne asada sizzle on the grill and then get chopped into tasty goodness.

Next I walked the line, picking out all the fresh toppings that would join my carne asada.

Refried beans, spanish rice, lettuce, cheese, guac, sour cream, salsa, tomatoes, and some jalapeno heat.  All the goodies packed into one missle sized burrito.

Right up to this point the burrito experience was great.  Suspense was building, my taste buds were salivating and I couldn't wait to dig in.

Then I took a bite

Everything good evaporated

I was right back where I always am after my first bite of a burrito (and the bites that follow), highly dissatisfied.

The individual ingredients represented in any burrito are usually stellar, but when rolled up and twisted into a tortilla they collectively lose their stand-out and unique tastes.

Since my hunger was high I willed down three quarters of my burrito before waving the white flag. There wasn't even one memorable bit where the balance of the ingredients was just right.

And that is why I am a taco man.  Soft or hard shell, I like both.  Chicken, Beef or Pork all work.  The taco continues to churn out better taste.

If you are a college kid or recent grad trying to eat cheap, stay full and not get hooked on some nasty fast food then I absolve you of your burritto addiction.  Same for you hungover dude who woke up at lunch.  But I would love to know from anyone else why the burrito, why? 

I know I write this as the minority, 90% of the time I am at a taqueria all of my friends get a burrito.  So, where are you on the burrito debate?


  1. I find the burrito loses its taste appeal due to trying to cram as much stuff into it as possible. The burrito trend is to make ne as big as a VW rabbit...thus you get small diced everything. Besides the over-blending of flavors, you lose the mouth-feel. I was to know when I'm eating a pepper, onion, or piece of seared animal. The taco is the archetype of "less is more". When I get a burrito, I unwrap it, remove the tortilla, and eat it almost indian style. I have better luck that way. Makes it easier to take home as well.

  2. However, Jalisco's burritos in Santa Rosa is the greatest burrito I have ever had....and it was $3. Across from the community college.