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May 22, 2007 03:15 PM

Chipotle vs Benny's- any others??

What does everyone think of Chipotle? I know they're all over the place, and I like how they seem so consistently clean. I'm a veg, btw, so I like a place that doesn't always use the same tongs/spoons for everything and such. We went to Benny's recently, which is/was under renovation, and I just never get why so many NYC "hot spots" are basically hole-in-the-wall types with strands of dust caked on the ceiling. Plus, the bill was much higher, we of course had to pay a tip too, and to be perfectly candid- the burrito was just blah, and had that "everything mushed into a paste" texture. Yet everyone always says "oooh, go to Benny's". I'd love to know if there are any other good burrito spots that are worth trying! (Oh- Burritoville is okay I guess, but never seems to taste really fresh to us.)

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  1. I know some people have this knee-jerk reaction to knock anything corporate, but I do think Chipotle is a good addition to New York. It's cheap, filling (well, too filling -- one burrito is enough for two!), and uses antibiotic-free meat. I definitely prefer it to Benny's and Burritoville. I really don't like Burritoville. I just don't understand its popularity.

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      1. Along the same lines, Qdoba on 34th (betw. 2nd and 3rd) is a Chipotle knock-off created by the left-coast fast food favorite Jack in the Box. And, it's actually pretty good as a Chipotle alternative. Basically the same stuff, but different flavors. Maybe not quite so clean and fresh but I like it more than Benny's/Burritoville.

        1. I like Uncle Ming's it's 19th b/ween 5th and 6th (i think)... i think the ingredients are fresher and more flavorful.

          2 Replies
          1. re: kesues

            It'a actually Uncle Moe's. It's OK, imo, but not better than Chipotle. Benny's is flat out awful, verging on inedible. Burritoville is pretty bad, too, though certain burritos (e.g., the Route 66) are OK if you order them without rice. Kitchen Market is hit or miss -- try the three cheese with black beans, salsa, sour cream, and guacamole. My favorite burrito was probably the Carne Asada at Pio Maya, though I haven't been since they reopened. Downtown Bakery also does a decent carne asada burrito.

            1. re: kesues

              I've posted my support for Burritoville before. It's a bit better than Chipolte and has more variety. Agree that Uncle Moe's is ok, too.

            2. Definitely not authentic, but in a similar fast-food vein is burritoville. They have a tex mex healthier-creative take on burritos. The free chips and picante salsa while you wait is perhaps the best thing about it.