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Best Bean & Cheese Burrito in San Diego?

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Ok, this is dumb, but I've searched and while I've seen general references to "anyplace will do a bean and cheese burrito" or "any taco shop will have a bean and cheese burrito" there's nary a specific suggestion for the best (or at least your favorite) place for a bean and cheese burrito.

So, let's hear it.

What specific place do you recommend? Or do you ..

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  1. Tony's Jacal in Solana Beach.

    1. Not a real recommendation, but I love any kind of burrito I get at Rudy's in Solana Beach or La Costa. I haven't tried the bean and cheese, but I'm sure it's pretty good.

      1. Kotija Jr in Leucadia/Del Mar puts together a mighty fine B&C, and their hot sauce is a mighty tasty complement. Juanita's is a worthy Plan B if you're in the neighborhood.

        1. Las Posas on Washington was always my late-night favorite B&C when I lived in that area....the hot sauce isn't very good there except it goes great with the B&C burrito. Not sure why. Of course, it was usually 1-3am so that might have something to do with it.

          1. This might sound crazy, but seriously, trust me on this. Roberto's Taco Shops. Of course, this is a San Diego staple. And the quality actually does vary from location to location even though they are all still owned by the same family. However, I highly highly recommend the Roberto's on Miramar Rd. As a fellow bean and cheese burrito connoisseur, I know how important each component is. You need the right kind of cheese (and the right amount). The standard here is a good sharp yellow cheddar. And the beans should be smooth, but not watery, nor should they be a hard mass. They should have tons of flavor, but not a bunch of salt. And they should not be bland and boring as if they just threw beans in a pot with oil. Roberto's has that great flavor in their beans because of one secret and disappearing ingredient in most new taco shops: LARD. Lard really makes the magic happen. In my 20 years eating bean and cheese burritos at this location, they hit it out of the park 9 out of 10 times. Their beans recipe is spot on, and I sometimes order mine with extra cheese just to get that kick of salt and flavor. Try one there and tell me what you think here!

            4 Replies
            1. re: Jottle

              Never realized that lard was a "secret".

              I've always understood, and expected, any self-respecting taqueria to use lard.

              Thanks for the rec, nonetheless.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                It should be standard, but a lot of new taco shop chains are advertising their lack of lard use (probably as a way to jump on the "healthier" food bandwagon regardless of the fact that most mexican staples are full of cheese, meat, etc). To me this significantly alters the taste of the food for the worse.

              2. re: Jottle

                One time my wife (who is vegetarian) asked "do you use lard in your beans?"

                Their response, was a classic: "as much as you'd like."

                1. re: zmirzlina

                  :)

                  BTW, if you read bout lard, it is not heart unhealthy.

                  Restaurants don't use it because it is more expensive than the trans-fat, chemically-altered cheap substitutes.

                  I'll take lard in my re-fried beans any day.

              3. El Cuervo in Hillcrest. They make great refried beans, they are generous with the cheese, they use quality tortillas, and they make a fantastic chile de arbol salsa. That was my go-to lunch item for many months. The nice thing about theirs is the beans aren't dry the way some are, but they also aren't so loose that the whole thing collapses halfway through.

                1. I'm partial to the one at El Portal in Mission Valley, and I do like their salsa bar. Service isn't always stellar - most of them seem less than thrilled to be there - but their food is pretty good.

                  1. El Cuervo in Mission Hills/Hillcrest.