The Taster: Braintree Burrito Battle
by The Taster
Burrito’s are the cornucopia of Mexican cuisine. With the popularity of Tex-Mex cuisine blooming in America, companies like Chipotle, Moe’s, and Qdoba are cashing in on the popularity and imposing a shadow on the local Mexican joint. In terms of Braintree, the big three are Chipotle, Qdoba, and local favorite Loco’s (El Serape would be a candidate, but is more of a sit down style restaurant, not a made-as-you-go line up like the other three). After sampling a steak burrito from all three over the course of April Vacation, here are the Taster’s results for Best Burrito of Braintree. The grading criteria involve 1. Taste 2.Passion and the very important 3. Chips/Salsa/Guacamole.
Chips and Gauc- 3/5
Qdoba jumped on the Braintree burrito bandwagon when they came to reside across from the mall next to Five Guys. In a valiant attempt at recreating the success of Chipotle, its archenemy across the street, Qdoba gets wild with cheese sauces, soups, jambalaya, and Mexican cuisine. Their attempt to have many offerings makes it seem as though they are trying to do too much, instead of trying to master a smaller number of things. The burrito was wrapped well, but the ingredients inside it lacked flavor and were very dry. The steak wasn’t marinated enough and the rice was bland. The passion left a lot to be desired – the friendly staff argued a lot and seemed disjointed. The chips and salsa were above average, a chunkier guac than the other two places, but was filled with red onion which overpowered it.
Chips and Guac-3/5
Loco’s is a staple of the Braintree Square. Probably serving the most authentic burrito out of the three, Loco’s was far and away the most hospitable and passionate. The owner/server went ingredient by ingredient to ensure a terrific bite. The nicest server by far, you could truly tell how passionate he was to make sure I had an enjoyable experience and meal. A major difference was the steak. It was the only place to use shredded and not cubed or diced. The downside of this was it left the burrito with the same soft mushy texture all around, where as a chopped steak adds a hearty, chewy texture which personally I enjoy. The other big difference was the chips. They seemed to be from the bag, yellow corn tortilla chips, rather than the white, lighter, freshly fried chips from the other two. Overall, Loco’s was a terrific burrito joint, but lost some points with the chips.
Chips and Gauc-4.5/5
The Taster is not one of those diehard Chipotle fans who thinks it’s God’s gift to mankind, but Chipotle won this contest by the skin of their salsa – half a point. Besides waiting in line forever if you go at the wrong time, Chipotle puts out a very consistent, solid product. The taste of the marinated steak, mixed with a healthy portion of shredded cheese and pinto beans, was accompanied by some delicious white rice adorned with a hint of lime, and the sour cream added a nice smoothness to the taste. In all fairness, they did rip the tortilla at first, but did replace it without me even having to ask. The chips and guac were a perfect pair, again, a hint of lime glistened off the tops of the lightly salted freshly made chips. The guac was chunky and seasoned well. Overall, the staff worked together as a team well, and delivered a delicious meal.
The Taster is BHS News’s anonymous food critic, specializing in unhealthy fast food. Do you agree or disagree with The Taster? Leave your comments below.