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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.

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  1. 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...


    4 Replies
    1. re: Dommy

      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

        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

          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

          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. 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. 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. 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. 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.