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Chipotle

Candy Jul 25, 2006 09:33 PM

A friend wanted to get me out of the house for an outing, I have been pretty confined and limited following back surgery, and sent me a note last night about where I might like to go.

I had been reading the new Saveur and read the full page ad for Chipotle and how their pork was grass fed and free range etc. and that they are continuing to look for more providers of the same for beef and chicken. I had also been having a conversation with another friend about buying less meat but buying the best quality we can, we don't need big portions anyway. So when the note came asking where we should go I thought what the heck lets try it.

Her husband haevested my e-mail in the AM and said to her "you are never going to believe this....Candy is suggesting a chain" Her response was "No! She would never do that." And yeah, 99.9% of the time I would suggest anything but. She came to pick me up with another of our friends and after getting under way the other friend asked where you are going and friend 1 said "you just will not believe that she wants to go to Chipotle." Friend 2 had not clue about the place.

We were very surprised and pleased with our lunches. We all had carnitas, I had mine in a couple of tacos and they split a burrito. It was kind of a wow I did not know you could get something that tastes that good in a chain. The pork was perfect and succulent and properly crusty. The toppings and sides were perfectly fresh. The only drawback I could complain about was the noise level. It was only 11:30 and not many people were in the place and it might have been better to sit at the outside tables available. But that industrial look with the high rafters and metal tables etc. really bounced the noise around and it was ver difficult to hear what the servers were asking and to hear each other at the table. Will I go back? To dine in , no. But for take out on the run I am fine with it.

I am not saying it is the best Mexican food I've ever had but for what it is I was quite pleased and certainly surprised. Now if they had a fish taco on offer I'd be really happy.

  1. Dommy Jul 25, 2006 10:12 PM

    Glad you enjoyed it! :)

    I'm not a fan because of the way they steam the flour tortilla... can't stand that. I also don't like their rice, but I think you can ask them to omit it... That tortilla though, BLEH! It's my deal breaker...

    --Dommy!

    4 Replies
    1. re: Dommy
      Candy Jul 26, 2006 12:30 AM

      Being an Arizonian and brought up on corn tortillas, flour just doesn't enter my mind to order, that is sooooo Texan to me, unless it is a chimi. I alsmot never eat rice. My two carnitas tacos in crisp corn tortilas were very satisfying and as I said not the very best but I was sure surprised at the quality of the carnitas.

      1. re: Candy
        k
        kindofabigdeal Mar 30, 2007 03:33 PM

        As a texan, I'm a total convert to soft corn, but I like a flour tortilla too. I agree that the carnitas are suprisingly good. Not necessarily carnitas you would get at a taqueria, but good (and much healthier than the taquieria kind)

        1. re: Candy
          d
          doomslayer85 Dec 18, 2007 06:29 AM

          I grew up in Wyoming so I haven't really had a background in the whole southwest-style of cooking. But i'll have to agree on this one. My friend took me here and i got a Carnitas bowl with Rice and cheese. Something somewhat plain so my overall experience wouldn't be ruined by my gluttonous eyes. He had me try his burrito and it was decent for his ridiculous contents but the flour tortilla tasted like paper in my mouth. Screw that. Gimme corn. I'll prolly always stick with the bowl idea though. Even if they start doing the corn idea, they'd have to grill the burrito shut to give it a crisp texture. But hey thats just me, steam my rice and veggies but keep my tortilla away from that steamer.

        2. re: Dommy
          a
          Akatonbo Jul 26, 2006 12:31 PM

          I soooo agree. Give me a nice corn tortilla heated to pliancy in a little oil (I'm reasonable - I don't insist on lard)! Am I correct in recalling that Chipotle offers itself as a "healthy" alternative to other Mexican eateries? Is that why they don't serve refritos? If so, it doesn't matter how good their carnitas are - I'm in Chicago, where there are a zillion great little taquerias that also have great carnitas and corn tortillas as well.

          But it's nice that the OP enjoyed her tacos. I have several friends who like the place precisely because it steams the tortillas.

        3. j
          Janet from Richmond Jul 26, 2006 12:12 PM

          The carnitas tacos are fabulous. I love, love, love Chipotle. I also like the gummy tortilla <g> and will have them cut the burrito in half for me and eat it for lunch for two days. They have great guacamole also. I don't get the rice because it's just a blah filler.

          1. x
            xman887 Jul 26, 2006 01:05 PM

            i think chipotle is pretty good. not great, but good. i like the carnitas and the barbacoa. i would prefer a grilled tortilla over a steamed one but i can live with it. despite a large mexican population in southwest detroit and an influx of migravt workers in the summer, flour tortillas are the norm rather than the exception here. my girls like chipotle, too, which is a plus. they usually split the four chicken tacos plate and we get a bag of chips on the side. i would normally pick a small mom & pop mex place or taquria (pancho villa, el charro, and jaun's hacienda in my hood come to mind), but for a quick bite on the go, chipotle does fine.

            1. b
              bliebman2 Jul 26, 2006 01:09 PM

              Chipotle is an "out of town" good option for me. I like to get their "bol" version -- no tortilla, but all the flavors I desire

              1. zorra Jul 26, 2006 07:23 PM

                I love the carnitas and black beans "bol". How great to be able to get such delicious pork and black beans even when you don't have much time.

                1. monkeyrotica Jul 27, 2006 03:38 PM

                  We've got quite a few in the DC area, mostly in strip malls. If the choice is between Chipotle and McDs/Wendys/KFC, Chipotle wins. But if it's between Chipotle and a decent local ethnic joint, they lose.

                  Much prefer Chipotle to Baja Fresh. The latter seems to use a leaner cut of pork for their carnitas. The slow cooking renders it really dry and tough. Chipotle's seems much juicier and flavorful.

                  1. m
                    mattesq Jul 27, 2006 10:34 PM

                    I kinda like Chipotle and I love carnitas, but I found the pork to be a little too salty.

                    1. sivyaleah Jul 28, 2006 01:49 PM

                      Chipotle is one of the best out of the chain bunch. I enjoy Baja too, but Chipotle does have a bit of an edge - flavors seem a bit more authentic. I really love their carnitas too. Chips are a lot better as well.

                      1. c
                        calabasas_trafalgar Jul 28, 2006 06:44 PM

                        I've been meaning to try this place. How does it compare to Rubio's? Do they have seafood items besides fish tacos?

                        It's gotta be better than Baja Stale!

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: calabasas_trafalgar
                          JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Jul 29, 2006 11:18 AM

                          Their entire menu goes:

                          Carnitas, Chicken, Steak, Barbacoa, or Vegetarian (Guacamole and black beans)

                          in a:

                          Burrito, Fajita Burrito, Tacos (soft flour or crispy corn), Burrito Bol (burrito, no tortilla), or Salad (Burrito Bol with lettuce and dressing). Chips with salsa or guacamole (get the guac!) are available on the side, and they have the best cheapo margarita I've found.

                          Something I really like about Chipotle is that it's one of the only national chains around that is vegan friendly.

                        2. c
                          calabasas_trafalgar Jul 29, 2006 11:24 PM

                          so no quesedillas?

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: calabasas_trafalgar
                            Xericx Jul 29, 2006 11:32 PM

                            Nope. I usualy get the Barbacoa....they overstuff the burritos...they are HUGE. Its not bad for fast food....but they are too massive.....

                            1. re: Xericx
                              Seth Chadwick Jul 31, 2006 03:06 AM

                              Actually, they do have quesedillas. They simply are not on the menu. Just ask for them. They know what to do. I have done this at three different locations in Phoenix and it never was a problem.

                              1. re: Seth Chadwick
                                Xericx Jul 31, 2006 05:57 AM

                                good to know.....i was craving a quesedilla the other day......went to chipotle and got one of their rice/bean humogous burritos...when all i needed was a quesedilla......

                          2. j
                            jumpingjack Jul 29, 2006 11:43 PM

                            I like the barbacoa too. The burritos are decent, each individual ingredient is very tasty, but they're not constructed particularly well. It's hard to get more than one element in a bite, so you just end up with one bite of rice, one bite of meat, etc. Might be because they are way too wide.

                            There is no Chipotle in St. Louis. Having moved here from San Francisco, I am sad that I now long for a Chipotle (or even Baja Fresh) in town.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: jumpingjack
                              p
                              p.j. Feb 22, 2007 12:10 PM

                              There has been a sign on the building at the NW corner of Forsyth & Central indicating that a Chipotle will replace the late Crispy Creme Donut store in Clayton. However, today the sign was off the building---but there were workers inside renovating the space!

                              This will give ZuZu's a run for our money. Unfortunately, I think ZuZu has gone downhill the last couple of years. Sometimes the black bean soup is thick and delicious, other times watery and tasteless!
                              p.j.

                            2. free sample addict aka Tracy L Jul 31, 2006 02:30 AM

                              We have a ton of home improvement projects so Chipotle is a convenient place to get something to eat late (burb time). I like the crispy carnita tacos and the magaritas.

                              1. j
                                jim1126 Aug 1, 2006 04:55 AM

                                Love Chipotle. Like several others here I get the barbacoa (and from the looks I get I gather it's not that popular, at least not in Houston). I get the burrito bol, no rice, pinto beans, the mild pico de gallo with a bit of spicy red sauce mixed in, sour cream and a little cheese. Fast food heaven.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: jim1126
                                  j
                                  jim1126 Jul 17, 2007 02:57 PM

                                  I have changed my regular order since my post above in an attempt to be healthier. On the advice of Best Life magazine I now choose the burrito bol with chicken, black beans, the salsas and guacamole. No more beef, cheese or sour cream. Well, today I went and got a bowl to go as described above. Got back to the office, began eating it, and was overwhelmed by the flavor of BACON in the chicken and beans. I knew from the article I read that the pinto beans were cooked with it; I guess everything else is too. So disappointing.

                                  1. re: jim1126
                                    ccbweb Jul 17, 2007 03:21 PM

                                    The black beans and the guacamole are listed on the Chipotle website as being vegetarian. So, no bacon there. The chicken is also not made with bacon according to the folks at the Chipotle in town here. So, unless something went wrong in the restaurant where you got your meal, perhaps some other ingredient ended up tasting like bacon.

                                    My wife can't eat pork, including bacon, without becoming ill, so I'm confident that neither the black beans nor chicken have bacon in them as a matter of course, as she's had both without problem in the past.

                                    1. re: jim1126
                                      JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Jan 10, 2008 04:46 PM

                                      Quit reading the mens' magazines and make your own decisions. The servings of steak and chicken are only 10 calories away from each other, a negligible amount to worry about if ever I saw one. The 170 calories of guacamole are actually going to do more caloric damage than the 110 from the cheese you left off. The black beans don't have any bacon. In fact, they're vegan. I've watched them preparing the chicken and they don't lay any bacon on top of them while cooking, nor do they chop any up and mix it in.

                                      I'd be willing to bet you're getting the smokiness of the chipotle peppers used (considering it's the name of the place, does it come as the least of a surprise that they use them in cooking?) with the smokiness of bacon.

                                  2. i
                                    Itslikeimsayin Aug 1, 2006 05:35 PM

                                    I can't believe so many people don't like Chipotle's rice. The lime juice and cilantro give it a subtle flavor that I love.

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: Itslikeimsayin
                                      h
                                      Humbucker Aug 2, 2006 12:55 AM

                                      I really like their chips, too. They have a really pronounced tang from the lime juice they add that makes them better than any other lard-less tortilla chips I've had.

                                      1. re: Humbucker
                                        k
                                        kinipela May 15, 2007 02:15 PM

                                        i know this is an old post.. but i had a chicken bowl, skip the beans, extra rice.. and i' got the chips for the first time.. i never had the chips before because somehow paying for chips escapes me.. i digress... ANYWAY, i was wondering why the chips tasted different... i'm not sure i like it... so they add lime salt on it?i think it might be too tangy for me.. that's why...

                                      2. re: Itslikeimsayin
                                        davinagr Aug 2, 2006 06:30 PM

                                        I concur on the rice, being a cilantro freak....the location near me (Wood.Hills) goes heavy on the cilantro in the rice and with the lime juice it's a nice change from traditional taqueria rice. I usually get the chicken or barbacoa with extra quac...good stuff.

                                        1. re: Itslikeimsayin
                                          f
                                          foiegras Aug 3, 2006 10:56 PM

                                          I agree, the rice is fabulous. It seems like you can never get consensus about Mexican food, it's the worst :)

                                        2. pikawicca Aug 2, 2006 01:05 AM

                                          I haven't eaten at our local incarnation, mostly because of the nutritional analyses I've seen of their food -- way too much saturated fat and calories for lunch. It might be organic, but it's certainly not healthy. If I'm gonna consume these kinds of calories, I'm going for foie!

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: pikawicca
                                            r
                                            reenum Aug 2, 2006 04:38 AM

                                            Hear hear, pikawicca. When Chipotle opened in my college town, I'd see girls in there all the time talking about how it was health food. Not so at all.

                                            I remember there was a website called the Chipotle Calculator(?) and it would calculate the nutritional value of most burrito combos. My usual clocked in at 1500 calories, and an ungodly amount of fat and sodium. Yikes!

                                            I went to eat there last month after almost a year and a half, and found I just couldn't finish the burrito. It's rare that I get too much food. Perhaps it's just the smaller portions I eat at home that have sapped my burrito eating ability.

                                            1. re: reenum
                                              h
                                              Humbucker Aug 2, 2006 07:22 AM

                                              Chipotle's bombshell nutritional info is the same reason I stopped eating there a year or two ago too (along with the whole McDonald's connection)! I realize burritos are not low calorie foods, but for some reason I thought Chipotle's might be a little less devastating. Now if I splurge on a burrito, I just go all out at one of the taquerias I like.

                                          2. TexasToast Aug 2, 2006 09:34 AM

                                            I'm not a huge fan, but it's cheap and it fills you up. The artificially restructured meat is the issue I have with them.

                                            In Texas, I prefer Freebirds. http://www.freebirds.com/

                                            On any given day, by 11:30 a.m., the line's out the door!

                                            TT

                                            4 Replies
                                            1. re: TexasToast
                                              j
                                              jansenmt Jul 15, 2007 10:22 AM

                                              You are lying. Anyone who's actually been to a Chipotle can see their grill FULL of beautifully marinated, free range organic chicken breasts. The worker chops them when they're cooked. Try going there before you make incorrect comments

                                              1. re: jansenmt
                                                ccbweb Jul 15, 2007 10:33 AM

                                                For the sake of accuracy, only about 60% of the chicken they serve is "naturally raised" which means, according to Chipotle, the chickens can't ever be given antibiotics, have to have more room to move about than in conventional chicken operations, and be vegetarian fed, never given animal by-products. They say that they're working to increase the percentage of their chicken that is naturally raised, but its not accurate to say that the chicken is free-range, organic. For a large operation, they are clearly working harder than most that I'm aware of to source their food in a way that seems more environmentally responsible and in a way that seems more careful of the animals.

                                                1. re: ccbweb
                                                  k
                                                  kindofabigdeal Jul 15, 2007 03:35 PM

                                                  but they're definitely not "artificially restructured"

                                                  1. re: kindofabigdeal
                                                    ccbweb Jul 15, 2007 03:45 PM

                                                    Oh, clearly not. Definitely chicken without funky stuff added to it. I didn't know much about their sourcing practices until I started reading/researching them in the last week or so...I'm impressed. One may not like the food or may have a problem with chains as such, but I don't think one can much impugn the quality of their ingredients or their efforts to work in a socially and environmentally conscious manner at least in terms of sourcing some of their food.

                                            2. h
                                              Humbucker Aug 2, 2006 06:05 PM

                                              Chipotle uses "artificially restructured meat"? Their meat looked pretty normal when I used to eat it.

                                              1. TexasToast Aug 2, 2006 10:48 PM

                                                I'm talking about the chicken. You can't tell me those pieces actaully came off a bird intact? Like most restaurant fast and semi-fast food, it's been chopped and shaped and put back together. A place like Boston Market has real chickens though.

                                                TT

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: TexasToast
                                                  k
                                                  kindofabigdeal Mar 30, 2007 03:34 PM

                                                  Hmmm... I think I disagree.

                                                2. f
                                                  foiegras Aug 3, 2006 10:53 PM

                                                  I like the place too ... but for goodness' sake don't eat the whole portion yourself ... many are a whole day's worth of calories for a woman. I get the steak Bol and eat half. Look forward to their getting their beef up to 100% ...

                                                  And btw, I've had the chicken and it definitely didn't look/feel/taste "parts is parts" to me. I'd be surprised if that's the case. Just because McD's owns it ... they own Boston Market too.

                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: foiegras
                                                    TexasToast Aug 6, 2006 11:10 PM

                                                    Yes, but you can SEE the whole chicken going around on the spit at Boston Market. And then when you buy a piece, it's got skin and bone and it obviously came off a chicken. Contrast that, with the stuff they use at Chipotle. That's all I'm saying.

                                                    TT

                                                    1. re: TexasToast
                                                      f
                                                      foiegras Aug 7, 2006 09:52 PM

                                                      Hey, if it makes you feel better ;)

                                                      When I go to Chipotle, very often there's a guy at the counter behind the counter chopping meat from big hunks of it. Personally I prefer Chipotle's to Freebirds ... FB makes those little teeny slices that curl up into pigtails ... urgh :)

                                                      1. re: foiegras
                                                        TexasToast Aug 13, 2006 05:12 PM

                                                        Yeah, but then that stuff you buy at Whataburger or Wendy's LOOKS like a chicken breast in a bun, but it's not. It's been MADE to look that way. That's all I'm saying.

                                                        TT

                                                  2. k
                                                    kclifer Aug 9, 2006 10:54 PM

                                                    I LOVE Chipolte. Do the tacos instead of the burritos. The Burritos are too big and too full. But, the best part of Chipotle is the chips and guac. I love guac and try it all over and I would have to say they have some of the best guac I've ever tasted. SOOOOOOO good. If I have a party where Mexican is on the menu...I buy it from them. OH, and the chips with the lime taste..excellent!

                                                    1. Robert Lauriston Aug 15, 2006 07:55 PM

                                                      I emailed the company to ask since the info was not on the Web site, and Chipotle's flour tortillas contain partially hydrogenated vegetable oil. Weird for a company that makes so much of its ingredients.

                                                      No industrial trans fats in any of their other items.

                                                      1. c
                                                        citizenconn Aug 15, 2006 08:10 PM

                                                        I seriously can't understand why anyone who lives in a town that has even a halfway decent taqueria would go to Chipotle. I've eaten there a couple of times. And, the pork tacos are definitely the way to go. But they are still very average.

                                                        If you live in the US, there is probably a decent taqueria in your town. Please seek it out and frequent it. Unless you are a kid-laden hands-free headset cell phone toting yuppie SUV w/2 screen portable dvd driving sheeple. Then keep on going to Chipotle so you don't run over me with your environment destroying tank while I'm at the local taqueria getting some decent tacos.

                                                        Plus, doesn't McD's own Chipotle? Please......

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: citizenconn
                                                          monkeyrotica Oct 30, 2006 12:29 PM

                                                          So if I don't have a halfway decent taqueria nearby, I can go to Chipotle?

                                                          There are two taco/burrito joints within a 5-block walk of Chipotle. Both look pretty authentic, run by Latinos, nice people. But their burritos suck: stale tortillas, flavorless rice (also stale, last time I tried), beans with no seasoning, and the meat tasted like it had been undercooked). I've sent food back telling them what's wrong, and they say "that's what sells."

                                                          I continue to look for decent taquerias, but they've all been disappointing in some respect. Either they're run by Salvadoreans trying to make Tex-Mex, or by Mexicans trying to make South American dishes, or locals who are trying to make everything and doing nothing right.

                                                          I've been to half a dozen Chipotles and have always gotten a consistently good product. Not great, but good enough.

                                                          I drive a VW burning biodiesel and get 45 mpg. What do you drive?

                                                        2. l
                                                          lbs Aug 15, 2006 10:06 PM

                                                          I have had some seriously tasty tacos in my neighborhood - no need to go to Houston. Chipotle is not my first choice when I'm outside of work, but it's not a bad alternative and it's not always frequented by yuppies. Plus I respect what the Chipotle by my work did during the Immigration rally and I'll support them for that.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: lbs
                                                            c
                                                            Cathy Aug 21, 2006 12:34 AM

                                                            Did they close or stay open? This is a big deal to us in border towns....

                                                          2. wyf4lyf Aug 15, 2006 11:27 PM

                                                            I enjoy Chipotle, esp. because if you omit the tortillas, rice and beans, you can eat fairly low-cal (not to mention low carb) and delicious. I get the bowl and ask them to put lettuce on the bottom, then the grilled veggies, chicken, all the salsas and just a smidge of sour cream. More lettuce, squeeze of lime and I have a huge lunch that is tasty and healthy. Sometimes I'll have them put in some of the beans for more protein.

                                                            1. z
                                                              zaydon Aug 20, 2006 11:43 PM

                                                              McDonalds Corp. is actually dumping Chipotle.
                                                              http://www.mcdonalds.com/corp/invest/...

                                                              Although they were owned, i don't think you could compare the ingredients.
                                                              I live in NYC and as a former San Franciscan(home of the burrito), there are almost no good burritos here and i have to resort to Chipotle. I think its ok. I go for the bbq pork.

                                                              1. h
                                                                HollyDolly Aug 25, 2006 02:13 PM

                                                                I have eaten there twice.Had the carnitas and the barbacoa .
                                                                I haven't been back not because of the food,but just cause
                                                                it's kind of expensive.
                                                                I plan to try Garcia's here in Schertz where I can get a luch special with drink included for 5.95 It's a local chain from San Marcos the original restraunt and now has one in Buda,lockhart and now Schertz. If I do eat mexican food some place,usually go to the local places around here.

                                                                1. westsidegal Aug 27, 2006 05:15 AM

                                                                  they lost me when they told me that they would charge extra if i wanted more than one scoop of salsa.

                                                                  never went back

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: westsidegal
                                                                    JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Aug 27, 2006 07:15 AM

                                                                    The only time I've been charged for putting in extra something was the guacamole, which has always been $1.25 per thwap of guac. I do three different salsas and they won't bat an eye.

                                                                    1. re: westsidegal
                                                                      TexasToast Sep 5, 2006 10:50 PM

                                                                      Me too. JK. I always mix the different salsas. It must just be your store, WSG.

                                                                      TT

                                                                    2. e
                                                                      EclecticEater Oct 29, 2006 04:53 AM

                                                                      You can ask them to hold the rice or just put very little in, ditto the beans, if you want to have more protein. The burritos then will be filling but in a different way, fewer carbs for those of you who like that kind of thing, less starch.

                                                                      1. b
                                                                        Bobfrmia Oct 30, 2006 02:00 AM

                                                                        Never been to Chipotle, as they aren't in Iowa, but an article in the local paper today says they use Niman Ranch pork in all their pork products.

                                                                        1. f
                                                                          fenian Oct 30, 2006 02:05 AM

                                                                          Chipotle is more than solid. It would be welcome in any city.

                                                                          1. sheilal Oct 30, 2006 01:07 PM

                                                                            We don't have a Chipotle yet in Birmingham, but Qdoba opened fairly recently. I've been to a Chipotle's in Chicago and absolutely loved it!!! Qdoba is very good as well. But I have to admit, they have a more lengthy menu than Chipotle. Which do you guys prefer?

                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                            1. re: sheilal
                                                                              j
                                                                              Janet from Richmond Oct 30, 2006 01:09 PM

                                                                              I much prefer Chipolte to Qdoba. I find Qdoba bland.

                                                                              1. re: Janet from Richmond
                                                                                p
                                                                                pbergen Mar 2, 2007 01:30 AM

                                                                                Agreed. Chipotle wipes the floor with Qdoba.

                                                                                1. re: Janet from Richmond
                                                                                  Dommy Mar 2, 2007 11:22 AM

                                                                                  And GROSS... I went there for on a recommendation of a good friend and was HORRIFIED by the state of their work area. They really need to train their 'wrappers' much better...

                                                                                  --Dommy!

                                                                                2. re: sheilal
                                                                                  u
                                                                                  Ubertrout Mar 30, 2007 01:02 PM

                                                                                  FYI, Chipotle is building a location in Riverchase, opposite the mall on 31. Should be opening this summer.

                                                                                3. m
                                                                                  mojoeater Mar 2, 2007 11:36 AM

                                                                                  A friend who worked at one in Cali told me they use sourcream to expand the guacamole. Certainly not healthy...

                                                                                  1. aching Mar 23, 2007 09:26 PM

                                                                                    For pretty much all of 2006, I had non-stop cravings for Chipotle. I was absolutely addicted to their carnitas - and I would always get a burrito bowl (which means no tortilla), with rice, beans, lettuce, cheese, sour cream, and medium and corn salsas. I went there at least once a week - the people who worked there knew me by name. Then I moved to a location with no ready access to Chipotle, and after a month or so of painful withdrawal, I was cured of my addiction! I've had it a few times since but it hasn't satisfied like before, and considering the calorie load, it's not worth it to me anymore.

                                                                                    So I think this begs the question - is it possible they were putting heroin in the carnitas?

                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: aching
                                                                                      l
                                                                                      lenguajoy Mar 25, 2007 07:17 PM

                                                                                      Read this and never forget what I'm about to tell you. Vegetarians and omnivores alike will LOVE this combo (except those that don't care for the tortilla):
                                                                                      Fajita-style vegetarian burrito - 1/2 spoon rice, black beans, corn salsa AND a spot of the pico de gallo, NO sour cream, just a few shreds of the cheese lightly over the top, and a spoon of guacamole. Period.

                                                                                      1. re: aching
                                                                                        welle Mar 30, 2007 03:49 PM

                                                                                        aching, I know what you mean! I've been obsessed with Chipotle eversince I tried it for the first time a year ago. I only have it once in a quarter, and always share because of all the calories. I've always thought that if I order a whole buritto all the way with all the works guac, corn, pico de gallo etc., my cravings would stop, but judging from your post, I guess not ;)

                                                                                        1. re: welle
                                                                                          aching Apr 1, 2007 06:39 PM

                                                                                          Again, I keep coming back to the heroin theory...

                                                                                        2. re: aching
                                                                                          katkoupai Apr 7, 2007 11:51 PM

                                                                                          I like Chipotle. I have had it twice in the last month.

                                                                                        3. n
                                                                                          nojunk Mar 30, 2007 03:41 PM

                                                                                          The only fast food I eat. Always to go.

                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                          1. re: nojunk
                                                                                            aching Apr 5, 2007 11:14 AM

                                                                                            To go, really? I think it's much better on-the-spot! I find that after ten minutes or so all the flavors kind of mush together and it's not as good.

                                                                                          2. s
                                                                                            swsidejim Apr 5, 2007 11:02 AM

                                                                                            I went once, and hated it. I say it was the worst lunch I have ever eaten. The chicken was dry, and flaovorless, and the salsas were weak. This is a place I will never go back to again. I will stick with the local tacquerias.

                                                                                            7 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: swsidejim
                                                                                              m
                                                                                              mlgb Jul 17, 2007 12:48 PM

                                                                                              I wasn't crazy about the chicken dish I had either. And no self serve salsa bar. I don't really get why this place is popular. Maybe only the carnitas are worth while, but since I don't eat those, it's not for me.

                                                                                              1. re: mlgb
                                                                                                s
                                                                                                swsidejim Jul 17, 2007 12:52 PM

                                                                                                I dont understand its popularity either. On the Miami board I think some people are waiting in anticipation for a Chipotle to open up. That shocked me , I would think they would have much better options for food down their with the huge latin population rather than to get excited about a less than medioclre chain.

                                                                                                different stroks for different folks I guess..

                                                                                                1. re: swsidejim
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                                                                                                  assoctw Jul 17, 2007 01:01 PM

                                                                                                  Part of the draw is the ethic of the place. They have a very simple menu with locally sourced foods (as much as possible) and they are very careful about freshness and overall quality. I usually go hard-shell taco and split between barbacoa and carnitas (2 and 2). They'll give you any kind of salsas you want on the side - just ask. Plus, it's fast. What's not to like?

                                                                                                  1. re: assoctw
                                                                                                    s
                                                                                                    swsidejim Jul 17, 2007 01:17 PM

                                                                                                    Whats not to like? the food, it tasted terrible, and the salsas were very weak.

                                                                                                    Luckily I live in an area with probably at least 6 tacquerias that are family owned, and put Chipotle to shame in regards to the food, and the value of a meal. I ate at Chipotle once because of the hype it receives, had a terrible lunch I couldnt even finish because it was so bad. It lived up to the phrase: "dont believe the hype"

                                                                                                    As I also mentioned, to each their own, at least if folks keep flocking to Chipotle I wont have to wait behind them in line at a tacqueria. ; )

                                                                                                    1. re: swsidejim
                                                                                                      ccbweb Jul 17, 2007 01:37 PM

                                                                                                      Out of curiosity, swsidejim, how long ago was it that you ate at a Chipotle?

                                                                                                      I don't have a lot of thoughts about the food quality yet myself having only sampled it once recently, but I know they've drastically changed the way they source in recent years, so I'm wondering when you ate there?

                                                                                                      1. re: ccbweb
                                                                                                        s
                                                                                                        swsidejim Jul 17, 2007 01:40 PM

                                                                                                        I ate at Chipotle for the only time about a year ago.

                                                                                                        I was interested in trying their chicken burrito after seeing a billboard regarding the quality of meat they were supposed to use. my wife warned me after having Chiptole with some of her coworkers what it was like, but I wanted to taste for myself.

                                                                                                        1. re: ccbweb
                                                                                                          m
                                                                                                          mlgb Jul 17, 2007 03:09 PM

                                                                                                          And I ate there last month. I also have better alternatives. "Bland" and "expensive for what you get" was part of my reaction. I guess if you live in chain country or where there aren't taquerias, I can see the attraction.

                                                                                              2. janie Jan 10, 2008 04:15 PM

                                                                                                tried this place for the first time last night and thought it sucked big time...chicken sits around and looks dried out and unappealing..nothing is actually cooked, it's prepared and just assembled--had a burrito with tasteless rice, pinto beans, watery guacomole, corn, and salsa,--too big to hold, burrito's are steamed.........so, unappealing..much much better choices here in the big apple...would only go if desperate out in the boonies.

                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: janie
                                                                                                  Suzy Q Jan 10, 2008 06:11 PM

                                                                                                  Because, of course, people who don't live in the Big Apple, a.k.a. "the boonies", deserve crappy food?

                                                                                                  Whatever. I've eaten at Chipolte several times and it's pretty good for what it is, which is fast food Mexican. I'd still consider it a step above somewhere like Taco Bell. The location here does a good job with fresh ingredients, and I'm not sure what you mean by nothing actually being cooked - the grill has been pretty well loaded every time I've been to eat there. Perhaps the Big Apple location isn't as good as some others.

                                                                                                  1. re: Suzy Q
                                                                                                    janie Jan 10, 2008 06:48 PM

                                                                                                    the only food I saw was in front of the servers being kept warm, and it didn't look very appetizing--by being cooked, I mean coming off of a grill just cooked--not getting hard on the edges sitting there! And for the record, the boonies, are not somewhere outside NYC, I am referring to some remote rural area where there might not be anything available, or some suburban sprawl that only has chain restaurants nearby...so, take it easy. I've been in some "boonie" areas, and actually fallen upon some CIA little cafes--parts of Kingston, etc...anyway, my point is that Chiptole sucked, and their minimalistic little menu and uncomfortable chairs were also irritating, a pretentious nothing---

                                                                                                2. b
                                                                                                  buttermonkey Jan 15, 2008 09:36 PM

                                                                                                  Mickey D's riped off Qdoba, neither are "Mexican". IMO neither are good.

                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: buttermonkey
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                                                                                                    babaoriley7 Jan 16, 2008 08:09 AM

                                                                                                    It wasn't McDonald's creation it was Steve Ells a chef from Denver. That was in 1993 and McDonalds didn't get involved until 1997. In 2006 they no longer have any control over the franchise.

                                                                                                    Qdoba started in 1995.

                                                                                                    I do agree that neither are mexican but frankly it doesn't really matter. If you take it for what it is, it is pretty good.

                                                                                                    Good ingredients prepared daily and made to your preference.

                                                                                                    1. re: babaoriley7
                                                                                                      Suzy Q Jan 16, 2008 05:33 PM

                                                                                                      I definitely agree, baba - I'd never call any of the Qdoba/Chipotle/Moe's/Salsarita's/etc. places an authentic "Mexican" restaurant - I look at them like Taco Bell, but with a bit more customization options and fresher ingredients.

                                                                                                      1. re: Suzy Q
                                                                                                        b
                                                                                                        buttermonkey Jan 16, 2008 06:12 PM

                                                                                                        Still swill no matter. IMO.

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                                                                                                    drgnflychic Jan 17, 2008 09:20 AM

                                                                                                    I know this is an old post but I have to add my two cents.

                                                                                                    I tried our new Chipotle shortly after it opened, say two months or so. Enough time to fix any kinks or people problems, right?

                                                                                                    Wrong. It was crap.

                                                                                                    The service was horrible, the food was blah (hardly any meat in a $7 burrito), and the place was dirty. So, being the foodie that I am, I thought they might want to know, plus several of my friends had said their experience sucked too. I got on the corporate website and wrote them a letter, telling them about my experience. Bad idea to include my real phone number. They started calling me every day, to the point it was annoying. I certainly did not want to talk to the manager that was rude to me in the first place so I ignored them. The regional manager called after the local manager had several times. He left a message and I finally decided to call him back. I told him that I had said everything I wanted to say in my email and asked them to stop calling. They finally did, thank goodness. I'm sure they would've given me some comps but I do not want to step foot back in there.

                                                                                                    Needless to say, I'll stick with my Qdoba. They're nice and the food is always excellent.

                                                                                                    1. Chew on That Jan 18, 2008 06:30 AM

                                                                                                      I was never a fan of Chipotle - I've always been a Qdoba girl!

                                                                                                      1. t
                                                                                                        twitchology Jun 25, 2008 08:05 PM

                                                                                                        I have a sick project to try each national burrito chain, and Chipotle is last on my list. I'll probably be eating there in 13 hours. What's the best protein to get? I'm undecided between chicken and barbacoa. I hate dry, chewy meat, and am wary of carnitas as I often find them too sweet.

                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: twitchology
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                                                                                                          jsaimd Jun 25, 2008 08:32 PM

                                                                                                          My husband gets barbacoa there and says it is decent. Doesn't compare to the taquerias we have around here and so we usually don't go to Chipotle. The chicken that I have had is the typical grilled chicken breast meat. Nothing too exciting, but I haven't had it in a burrito.

                                                                                                          1. re: jsaimd
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                                                                                                            babaoriley7 Jun 26, 2008 08:17 AM

                                                                                                            I personally love their chicken marinade. One of my favorite fast food meals is a chicken burrito or chicken tacos. I did want to clarify that I believe they use thigh meat as it usually isn't the whitest meat. Makes it more flavorful if you ask me, but not as healthy as breast meat.

                                                                                                        2. m
                                                                                                          mcc Jun 29, 2008 06:14 PM

                                                                                                          I went there today for the first time. Had a chicken fajita burrito, it was terrible. Way to salty, mushy, gross, I couldn't eat it. The guac was so salty I couldn't eat that either. Will never go again.

                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                          1. re: mcc
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                                                                                                            gordeaux Jun 29, 2008 08:54 PM

                                                                                                            This is what the standard American palate craves. I've been a handfull of times to different franchises just to make sure I wasn't crazy. Each time, it was oversalty processed tasting garbage. All meats were way too chewy, and overcooked to death. This is what the masses want, can't really blame Chipotle. The demand is there.

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