I am a burrito expert. It ain’t braggin’ if it’s a fact. My qualifications? 30 years of running up and down and all around California (the undisputed burrito capital of the world) on a low budget. I have my preferences and favorite places but don’t belittle or begrudge anybody theirs.
I’ve noticed San Diegans are rightfully proud of their development of not only the Fish Taco but the California Burrito as well. A California Burrito simply substitutes french fries for the beans and rice in a
real regular burrito. This is fine by me but what frosts my balls is they take it a step over the line by refusing (I suspect some type of ordinance) to sell burritos with meat, beans and rice. I’ve looked high and low for 10 months and I can’t get no burrito satisfaction.
This drives me mad because San Diego does all other kinds of Mexican Food amazingly well. Yesenia’s over in Carmel Mountain rolls my all time favorite breakfast burrito with eggs, chorizo, bacon, potatoes and cheese and their salsa bar is incredible but when I want a real NorCal style carne asada burrito? No dice.
Don’t get me wrong, carne asada, cheese and french fries wrapped up in a flour tortilla tastes great! Especially after you’ve been recreating your ass off
and/or smoking alot of pot down at the beach which people tend to do quite a bit of down here. But if you complain about their lack of diversity the locals get really defensive.
I can hear some of you asking “So Sepulveda, who does make the best burrito in California?” I wouldn’t presume to make such a pronouncement but I will tell you about a couple favorites.
1. After a long morning session fishing on the Russian River, I stumbled upon a little joint in Forrestville. This burrito was done right. Tender, savory carne asada, slow cooked, lightly seasoned whole pinto beans, a little pinch of steamed rice, onions and cilantro and some amazing crumbled cheese that the server reflexively identified as “Jack”. Salsa on the side of course. Yes I was famished (as are most people that order humongous burritos) but it’s been over five years and I still think of La Rosa Market & Taqueria fondly.
2. Back when I was jack-rabbiting up and down Central Calif, I settled on Taqueria el Grullense Jal as my go-to burrito joint. They have locations in Gilroy, Los Banos, Chowchilla, Merced and probably other towns I am unaware of. Basically these guys do the same thing as above but the meat is not quite as tender and they don’t have that fresh tangy mystery cheese.