Food Porn: Chipotle

Chipotle completely came out of nowhere for me, I had no idea what it was or what they served.  But suddenly twitter was blowing up about the new Buffalo location and people who had lived out of state were freaking out.  For a minute it seemed like the restaurant equivalent of Bass Pro coming to Buffalo (in my opinion that would be Five Guys).  Hell, even Buffalo Sabre Forward Drew Stafford praised its greatness on twitter and Alli cheated and stopped there without me while she was out at UB one day and could not wait to go back for more.

So to say I had high expectations before I even walked in the door would be an understatement.  I had somehow gone from knowing nothing at all about the restaurant to being convinced it was the best ‘Mexican’ in Buffalo.

To be fair, this really isn’t a “Mexican” restaurant;  Chipotle is more like a Burrito/fast food restaurant.  Their menu is really short and simple (see above) but in a really good way.  Your options really only consist of a Burrito/Taco/Fajita or a “Burrtio Bowl.”

I ordered the Carnitas Burrito, which was seasoned pork with black beans, rice, lettuce and their mild salsa.  I wasn’t incredibly thrilled with the salsa, mild was basically just chunks of tomato with little/no sauce while the medium (which Alli got on her chicken tacos) had more sauce and definitely jumped up the heat scale.  However, the pork was warm and seasoned just right, it had a great taste and the black beans and rice were, simply, just really really good.  This thing was pretty big, so I wasn’t too upset with the ~6 price tag for a single burrito.  I honestly couldn’t have finished it any faster if I tried, it got messy near the end but what good stuffed Burrito doesn’t?

As many who have been to Chipotle will tell you, the homemade Chips and Salsa is fantastic.  Just warning, however, if you are a fan of “smooth” or “fake” salsa, this might not be something you enjoy.  Chipotle’s salsas are fairly chunky, as I mentioned before, the mild salsa consists of mostly tomato chunks.  The medium salsa was  slightly smoother than the mild and the hot is probably the “smoothest” yet incredibly spicy (much more than your typical “hot” salsa would be).  I understand that using fresh ingredients and adding some authenticity is what a lot of people like about Chipotle so maybe some of you out there will love their salsa and some won’t, but everyone will love their freshly baked chips.  They were covered in salt and have a slight lime flavor and are just delicious.

Chiptole managed to definitely live up to their lofty expectations from basically everyone on Twitter and Facebook who raved about it.  Is this going to satisfy any transplants from California, Mexico or the general south who experience kick ass Mexican on a regular basis? Hell no, this is still a chain people.  I also don’t think there should be any comparison to Mighty Taco, these two places could not be more different.  Mighty Taco is a true fast food restaurant in almost every sense of the word.  If anything, the obvious comparison should be Moe’s and Chipotle.  I’ve only eaten at Moe’s twice and while I definitely don’t remember hating it, I don’t remember loving it (I haven’t wanted to go back in the 2-3 years since my last visit).  However with Chipotle, I’ve been dying to go back since we left and would recommend it over Moe’s if someone had the choice between the two.

Chipotle on Urbanspoon

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