Chipotle and Pancheros are garbage. I'd slaughter my own cow and throw it in a tortilla before I ate that crap again.
OT: BTB, Pancheros, Qdoba, or Chipotle?
we say around the office, anytime someone brings in Qdoba/Chipotle/Taco Hell/anything of that ilk:
"should've cut out the middleman and thrown it in the toilet"
Qdoba has the widest variety as well as the best tasing, but there isn't one on campus and therefore falls in 4th
BTB is number one, prime drunk food best location, next is panchero's garbage but again great drunk food
Chipotle is 3rd, 2nd best in taste, least convenient on campus
QDoba's with the barbecue sauce are by far my favorite. Especially with adding in the Guacamole. I like Panchero's and Chipotle, but something about BTB has always struck me a being kind of off.
I'm partial to Moe's Southwest Grill myself, but I think that is because I ate a burrito at Moe's before I had one at any of the other locations.
But they sure as hell make up for it with the chips and queso sauce.
the comment was refering to the Adobe Mexican joint on the West Side.
QDoba and Chipotle are basically the same thing, as the two founders of QDoba split apart and one of them started Chipotle.
This is entirely wrong. Chipotle was founded two years before Qdoba (1993 vs. 1995), and the only connection between the two companies is that they were both founded in Denver.
in Tallahassee and Gainesville.
I love me some Qdoba chicken nachos. Top 5 in my Best Chicken Nachos Quest.
Definitely agree with the Moe's vote, though BTB is probably tops for me.
I always like both BTB and Pancheros, though they were very different. I liked the burrito with carnitas at Pancheros, the fresh tortilla worked well with the stewed pork. At BTB I liked the chicken with the freshness of the pico and the lettuce. I didn't have Chipotle or Qdoba until recently a few years after leaving Ann Arbor. I'd put Chipotle a step below Pancheros and BTB, in some ways I think it is a bit of a mix of the two. And I found the burrito from qdoba to be aweful, the rice was flavorless and it comepletely ruined the rest of the burrito for me.
The one time I had Panchero's I thought it was absolute shit. Never had Chipotle, but I hear it's just like Qdoba, which I rank second behind BTB
I'm going with BTB the way I remember it. Pre-cantina BTB circa 2005-2006. In my return trips to AA I always feel like is has been cheapened a little... or, maybe I just not as blackout drunk.
Between the chains, its Qdoba easy, then chipotle... and a unbelievable distant 3rd is Pancheros, which tastes like a high school cafeteria burrito.
Burritos are important to me.
Concur. BTB > Qdoba >>> Chipotle > Panchero's
BTB due to the prime location and all the good memories I have there. Qdoba is a close second on taste alone.
BTB is best, I love it for lunch or late night. Doba is second for me and then Moes and Chipotle last.
I don't get much on my burrito so at $4.50 for steak, rice and lettuce, Chipotle is hard to beat. None of the other places have a discount for that. The same thing at Pancheros is like $9.00. Qdoba is pretty good too. Wasn't a fan of BTB.
There is nothing special. It is dry meat garbage. The ONLY (and I do mean ONLY) redeeming thing about Pancheros is that they mix everything up before the roll it, eliminating that bite of nothing but rice, or guac that you get with Qdoba. The problem is, it tastes like garbage.
I'm gonna buy my local Qdoba some spatulas.
Every single time I've gone to Chipotle I ask them to mix it up. I sometimes get a dirty look, but it's better than having a cold cheese bite right after a 100% rice bite.
BTB. Any day. Two grilled chicken quesadillas, $3.75 each, before every basketball game, after every football game. So god damn good and a prime location. The only downside to discovering BTB is that I literally never go to Quickee anymore (delicious, but overpriced...) because the two are so close and I just can't pass up the chicken queso.
BTB chicken quesadilla with a side of sour cream and diablo. Add on chips and salsa = the best meal in Ann Arbor for $6.50. I wouldn't have survived without BTB.
Wow, I guess I'm the outlier but I say Panchero's number one for sure. Everyone of my friends in college loved Panchero's top, it was always out favorite lunch stop on campus. Funny to hear so many people dislike it.
After that, I'd say Chipotle second and BTB third (although that's admittedly a toss-up) and Qdoba fourth. LA doesn't have Panchero's or BTB, obviously, but there are far more Chipotles and they're much busier than Qdoba.
I'm also from LA and I 100% agree with the order: Panch, Chipotle, BTB and Qdoba. I think Southern California does a damn good job with Mexican food and Panch has always been one of my favorite fast food mexican places. Same with most of my college friends. The tortillas are amazing and the queso is damn good. Plus, Panch delivers, which is just a fantastic plus. Chipotle has the best damn guac out of anyone in the running here and maybe the best of any fast food mexican place in the US. BTB is third, strictly for their nachos. Qdoba is dead last by a mile, I might even take Moes over Qdoba for their salsa selection.
You're not a lonely outlier. I'd place Panchero's in my number one spot. I'd swap BTB and Chipotle and put Qdoba third. I also loved that Panchero's and BTB were right on campus. The others were a hike.
Pancheros is number one. The fresh on the spot tortillas makes all the difference. I get their veggie burritos quite a bit and really like them. The carnitas is really good too. I've yet to give BTB a try but will put it on my list.
I'm not sure what the Pancheros hate is all about???
But, Chipotle would challenge for burrito supremacy if they added queso to the menu. Queso is key. Also... BTB is overrated by the frequency with which it is consumed while drunk. While I am often overwhelmed with nostalgia every time I eat there now, I am not overwhelmed with the actual food.
Edit: Almost forgot about Pancheros. Fitting, I suppose.
BTB hands down. Great burritos. Great tacos. I probably put on a solid 10 lbs when BTB first opened up about a block away from my house during college and I discovered the awesomeness of their steak nachos.
I love Qdoba. They actually marinate their meat in a way that makes sense and it always comes out juicy and flavorful. I also think their Queso is the best.
I would put Chipotle next, as their spices are pretty good. Overall the burrito just seems slightly lower quality than Qdoba however; seems like its smaller, they use lesss ingredients, etc.
Pancheros is pretty low. Two of my best friends worked at Pancheros in high school so I would always get hooked up, and I still didn't like it very much. Everything is just less flavorful than the top two options. Their steak is quite dry as well.
Finally, BTB goes all the way on the bottom. Five years ago when I was a freshmen, I thought it was the best thing in the world. However, the quality really seems to have gone down and I find their burritos incredibly dry. Had my last burrito there last year (senior year) and really did not enjoy it at all. Yes, it's great drunk food, but in that state there isn't a whole lot that doesn't taste good. If you want delicious drunk food, go to South U Pizza. Love that place.
A sidenote for the health conscious: what I learned from my two good friends who worked at Pancheros in high school is that burritos overall are actually quite healthy. Assuming you don't get the bad toppings for you, straight up rice, beans, and some kind of protein with a little sauce is quite decent for you. It is the TORTILLA THAT KILLS YOU. These places fill their tortillas with lard, sugars, and all sorts of bad stuff to make them taste better. The better option is always to go for a burrito bowl and just ask for some extra rice or beans.
What? No love for Burrito Joint?!?!
JK. Burrito Joint is god awful.
Burrito Joint is the one that stocks Ugos and Mujo on North Campus. If you think regular Burrito Joint is god awful, wait until you try it after it's been sitting under a heat lamp for 5 hours.
I work at the Pierpont Ugo's so I know exactly what you're talking about. After close (1am) we can take some home if we want. Needless to say thats a mistake you only make once.
Living in Denver, I'll start by openly admitting my bias; but Chipotle has the top spot on my list. Qdoba has more options (some of which are very good), but for pure flavor Chipotle takes it for me. If any of you make it out here, try Illegal Pete's. Just about anything you want wrapped in a tortilla, great bars with killer happy hours and a generally fun crowd. Not so sure they take MCards though...
I recently moved to Boulder and I just had Illegal Pete's for the first time last week. Quite simply it was delicious. I am not sure if I like it more than Big City Burrito though. The potatoes you can get there are incredible.
Second on Illegal Pete's.
And having had a lot of Chipotle in Colorado, and sampled a few Chipotles in Ann Arbor, as well as the Midwest in general, I've come to the conclusion that it just tastes better in Colorado. I now reluctantly and sparingly eat it outside of CO.
Since you're in Denver (and for anyone else who lives there or visits) check out Tacos Y Salsas. There are a few in town, and while the two I've been to (the one on Federal and the one Colfax) are pretty sketchy, they are hands down my favorite tacos, and cheap too!
Chipotle outside of Colorado is an adventure, to say the least. I went to the one closest to my parents' place in Macomb County and was amazed a stick-on fingernail didn't end up in the finished product. I'm also biased because I spent a lot of college on a couch down the block from the original Chipotle and they always seem to get it right.
I live a block away from a Tacos y Salsas now, and I'll second the recommendation. Fortunately for me the location downtown isn't quite as sketchy.
/rambling about tortilla-wrapped food in Denver.
it is Chipotle I have never eve heard of BTB or Pancheros dont know if they are in Ohio.
Surprised with the Qdoba love. Most people I know prefer Chipolte, including myself. Love the Carnita burritos. They definitely aren't shy with the salt.
BTB has the best salsa and guac. I'm not a huge fan with the marinade they use on their steak. It's a little too strong. I'd put them just behind Chipolte.
Qdoba is good too. Very similar to Chipolte.
Is Panchero's still around? I really liked them when they used refried beans and advertised their 2 lb burrito. Then they changed their ingredents and became just like Chipolte and Qdoba, except not as good.
1. Pancheros - Best tortillas (made on the spot) and salsa by far. Plus they mix the ingredients up so you get everything in every bite.
3. Qdoba - burritos are garbage, but quesadillas are good. Tortillas come in a bag.
4. BTB (the one in EL didn't even make it for a year because they cant keep up with Pancheros just down the road)
A good way to gauge it. Pancheros is the only one you will ever see a mexican eating at.
Pancheros, really. The best tortilla; it tastes like a pancake. Literally their tortilla tastes like a burrito. Pancheros is incredibly overrated.
Qdoba is solid and it definitely does have the most variety but it lacks something on the taste. The salsas aren't as good and their attempts at creativity, such as the Ancho BBQ Mole, fall short.
BTB has gotten better and from what I hear has the best veggie burrito. Also hear their Chimmy Chonga is really good but I haven't had the courage to try. Great and great atmosphere. Love the guys working their. Seen plenty of hispanic individuals eating there, although usually I am intoxicated when I go. Late night food there with my friends was one of our staples so it holds a special place in my heart.
Chipotle is clearly the best. It is delicious. Their roja salsa, hot salsa, is the best, and the Barbacoa is fantastic. Better than the pork at Qdoba. Their steak is the best although Qdoba does get close with the steak. I always get the best portions at Chipotle (unless you are at ones in Birmingham/Royal Oak). Plus Chipotle has the best quality food, particularly meat. They get the vast majority of their supplies from local farmers and strive for excellence. For those who appreciate farms with more natural methods of raising animals, free ranging etc., they primarily buy from them. Plus they had this festival in Lincoln Park Chicago which was awesome. Drank good beer all day, learned about food, and got a free burrito. In sum, it is clearly the best burrito place.
My opinion on this is pretty much worthless, but I'll share anyways. I had Chipotle once and felt like I was having a heart attack and never had it again. It was good up until I thought my life was going pass in front my eyes, but I felt it wasn't living up to its hype. Qdoba is not bad, but nothing special and I wouldn't go out of my way for it. Can honestly say I've only had nachos and chips w/guac at Pancheros so I have no frame of reference there. Big Ten Burrito (I refuse to let Jim Delany play a role in naming my eating establishments) is the best A2 has to offer in the world of fast food burritos, IMHO. That being said, I do love me some Baja Fresh over all of these options, but alas, I think Novi is the closest one to us.
Well, I told you my opinion was pretty worthless!
The answer is pretty easy for me, I am a big Chipotle fan. If there was a Chipotle located in my hometown, I would be broke.
Qdoba has the best peppers and onions while the other chains' are slimy and nasty.
I now live in Seattle, however, and oftentimes I get the craving for Pancheros bc it tastes a little different and there isn't one in sight. Ahh....#whitepeopleproblems
Qdoba - Great
Chipotle - Good
BTB - Never had
Panchero's - Zero flavor, horrible.
I graduated in 2000 and Panchero's was the place where hungry people went. I am not sure if "El Gordo" is still around but it was basically a burrito on steroids (3-4 regular burritos) for like $5, and it was actually pretty good. Maybe the quality of their food has gone downhill. Chipotle is allright and I never heard of this Qdoba place. The only other Mexican place I recall was Taco Hell, on East U, near the intersection of East U and South U.....29 cent tacos....score!!!
Chipotle BY FAR. The steak is perfectly cooked (medium rare) and they have the best ingredients. Their rice is definitely the best out of all the burrito places. Qdoba has awesome nacho cheese but every time I eat there I feel like a fat piece of shit afterwards. BTB is pretty good. I haven't eaten Panchero's enough to give it a fair review.
Qdoba. They win in a landslide over Chipotle to me because I prefer quesadillas over burritos, and Chipotle's quesadillas are garbage, right on par with BTB. BTB was really good when they first opened (my sophomore year), but they went downhill FAST. By the time I graduated a couple years later, I wouldn't eat there anymore. As for Panchero's... lol, this isn't the 90's.
but I used to get a BTB chimichanga every single hockey and football weekend for two years so I'm split. I've never liked Pancheros. They're like 75% rice
Pancheros - Awesome. I absolutely love this place and how they mix up the ingredients.
BTB - cheap with value. Nice spot, especially at 2 AM
Qdoba - most selection and probably best overall burrito joint
Chipotle - good, but I wouldn't choose it over any of the three above.
Moes - awful. I literally hate this place because you have to get your salsa on the side and for some reason it annoys me when you walk in the door and they say, "welcome to Moe's" in a weird non-welcoming way.
I kept trying all of the above as much as I could until BTB killed the rest.
Food of choice: chicken quesadilla on whole wheat with guac and hot sauce inside. Trust me, it's TREMENDOUS.
Hot-Head Burrito owns all.
I loved BTB, but when their prices rose to over 5 dollars for a burrito while the quality of the meat dropped (you would get bites of gristle, fat, and mystery texture all the time in the Quesidillas), I tried the other places. I like Pancheros tortillas...delicious. Chipotle is the only one where if I eat it, I will need to know where a clean bathroom is within a few hours. Qdoba is simply ok.
Pancheros - Haven't had in probably 3-4 years and was kind of meh from what I remember.
BTB - Same as above excpet it was pretty good
Qdoba - Takes my vote hands down. Really great meats and their queso is so good. Their breakfast burritos are also pretty damn good.
Chipotle - Lots of my friends keep telling me how much more they like it than Qdoba, but every time I decide to give it another try I just decide I'll stick with Qdoba.
But my stomache always agrees with it badly the next morning and I usually find a piece of steak in there that I cannot fully chew.
So when sober: Chiptole
When drunk: BTB
So, based on the spelling of "chiptole," you're at BTB right now?
I agree completely with the OP's 1 through 4, but Panchero's is pretty damn good after a night out on South U and it's always a lof of fun to make new friends in line there when it's out the door.
hands down,chipotle has no queso! the only thing chipotle has that is better is their chips
BTB hands down, they definitely load you up with sour cream and guacamole. I used to live on Packard and Hill, so was there a few times a week (especially late at night haha). Moved out to Boston almost three years ago and still can't find a place that matches up.
I had one experience at Pancheros before they came to AA (1991?). After a night of drinking, the roommates and I had a contest to see how many 2 pound burritos we could eat. I lost explosively in the midst of my second burrito.
Also I prefer fitted caps.
For me. When BTB added the shredded chicken i couldn't get enough of it and still can't. The juices that you get when they take out a scoop and put it into the burrito are so good. I also like their hot green sauce the best out of any of the other hot sauces but Panchero's is very good also.
drive to Chicago, and you'll find about 300 neighborhood taquerias that will make you never eat at any of these four ever again.
I used to love the Pancheros on South U until they tried charging me for queso on my burrito that I didn't order. I NEVER get queso yet the cashier and the assembler insisted that I got queso, even though I watched them make it and queso did not go anywhere near my burrito.
So I'm going to go with Moe's. They serve beer there, after all.
Panchero's has the fresh tortilla. Not sure why this hasnt been copied... It makes a huge difference and is really a great touch.
Qdoba has great queso sauce, and in has nothing generally wrong with it.
Chipotle has the best meat across the board... chicken is great there and the carnitas are actually really good as well.
BTB - enjoy the hot sauce, and the shredded chicken, but always wish they did more with the tortilla.
Also, Baja Fresh is also a strong option, I enjoy the grilled touch.
I will say that all of the above are some sort of Americanized version of a classic burrito, but they are all pretty damn good. I find that taquerias have great tacos, and enjoy them wherever I am (just in Costa Rica, Mexico City a few years back, San Diego, etc)... but sometimes they also have dirt meat and minimal effort...
As for Chicago, where I live, I like to go and get me some Goat tacos and soup...
After a night of drinking a bunch of us naturally went to BTB around 3 AM. They guy in front of us ordered some churros. The cook grabed the churros, sans glove, and tossed them in the deep fryer. The guy who ordered them threw a fit and demanded the cook put on gloves and toss in a new batch of churros. Now if you've ever been to BTB at that time you know it's good and crowded. The abuse we gave that guy for bitching about something that was about to get fried to shit caused him to leave without his food.
I know, I know cool story bro, but to this day the churro guy's actions bewilder me.
Not Chipotle. I got so, so sick the last time I ate there. It was fast food! That shit is so overcooked it should be impossible to get sick.
This is easy. BTB > Qdoba > Chipotle > Pancheros. Why? That is the order of things.
This is just ridiculous. Qdoba or Chipotle is better than Pancheros? That's like coming to New York and choosing McDonalds instead of Shake Shack. Makes no sense.
Best burrito I ever had: Del Taco. They're no longer in the midwest, and are somewhat nasty, but the Del Beef burrito with Del Inferno hot sauce is one of the singularly most satisfying things I've ever eaten. A flour tortilla with seasoned beef and grated cheddar and that's it. Get an order of crinkle cut fries, and there's nothing better.
Oddly, I've never tried the burritos there, but the fish and shrimp tacos are tasty. I don't know how far into Ypsi you're interested in traveling though
I live right near there and I tried it a couple times but, simply put, their burritos were horrible. I say were because they closed.
Is on Ford Road and Telegraph. It's more a Taco Bell with real food than the kinds listed here.
Pancheros. All others are garbage.
This thread is probably one of the more interesting I've read. Most individuals that I have talked to swear by Qdoba or Chipotle and shit on Pancheros and BTB (unless drunk). To see such love for Panch and BTB is indeed strange to me. I guess we can all agree that Burrito Joint is shit.
You guys are insane, Chipotle is the best by ten thousand miles. Farm raised, free range meat, at least the majority of it is. The hot sauce is actually hot, you get the choice of brown or white rice, guac is also good.
Chipotle is by far the greatest restaurant on the face of the earth. I eat there at least 4 times a week. The food is healthy and delicious, and doesn't break the bank. All of their ingrediants are from local farms, and you can taste it in the food. The guacamole at Chipotle is to good to be compared to any other Mexican restaurant. I got in on Chipotle stock in 2008, buying 10 shares at $55 dollars a pop. It's now ballooned to nearly $400 per share! I own 5 Chipotle shirts, 2 Chipotle hats, and even guacamole flavored chapstick. When the Chipolte festival came to Chicago on October 1st, I was there. While those other restaurants are good, and Q'doba is second in my books, none of them remotely compare to the quality, and taste of Chipotle.
I'll take 'em all on any given day. Different flavors for different times.
The only reason I dislike going to Chipotle is because somebody is inevitably going to pronounce it "chip- oll -tay" while you're there. I swear, half the world becomes dyslexic with that word.
BTB by far. I love their sauces. Then Chipotle and Pancheros. Qdoba is hot garbage. I would rather eat my own crap than Qdoba or Tios.
Eating at Tios is like watching someone put your grandmother through a blender and making you chug the results. It is atrocious. The fact that it was on Man Vs. Food is an abomination to Ann Arbor cuisine.
Pancheros has been around the longest in A2 by far. In the 90's, Pancheros made the burritos with meat, refried beans and the rest of the veggies(lettuce, tomato, and what not but no rice). The El Gordo, a 2lb burrito but bigger at 2am, was a mainstay of the late night drunk crowd. The Pancheros in East Lansing also produced the same food. In the early 2000's, the Pancheros were bought out by a large holding company and turned into a chain. Basically all of the Qboda, Chipotle, and what not are the same except for some spins on ingredients. They are chain restaurants that you will find some are better than others.
The El Gordo is a legendary burrito that the Fab Five, Charles Woodson, and other Michigan legends have been witnessed eating in the 90's.
Pancheros - Used to be great. They cooked it up, made the tacos two tortillas on the grill with melted cheese between them. Then became like the rest in great part. Fresh warm tortillas (that you can buy separate even) does make it special still.
BTB - Was good when it was grat value. Not anything special now.
Qdoba - Varies. One on Main a lot better than one on Wastenaw. Queso and chips are where it's at.
Chipotle - The best meats, spicy, flavorful. But limited menu. Kinda pricey for amount of food you get.
Moe's - not particularly good, but Queso, and has all you can eat Tacos on Tuesdays.
People confuse the Pancheros on campus with Pancheros as a whole. The Pancheros on South U is the only Pancheros worth eating at at all. Something about it, probably its proximity to greatness, makes it delicious. I've never had a great burrito at any other of their locations.
I'd go like this:
3. Pancheros (on campus)
I think Qdoba overcooks their steak, and that's what I usually will get. The steak nachos with medium salsa at BTB are absolutely killer. Chipotle fueled my grad school years (at a different school, alas) and their barbacoa tacos are solid, especially with the corn salsa.
Anyone in PDX on here ever eat at King Burrito in NoPo? Some of the best Mexican food I've ever had. You can get a burrito the size of your forearm for $4.
Back room pizza
BTB changed their pico about 2 years ago (thicker cut tomatoes and onions) which I did not really like and made the burritos noticeably different. I still think they are #1 though.
The 24 hour mexican food places out west (Romiro's, Filiberto's, Rolberto's, Los Betos, etc. ... all with the same menu) are sorely missed in the midwest. It's not that they are high quality, just significantly different from all the above mentioned places in AA. Those places are legit, esp. the ones in Arizona.
I actually like Pancheros the most, although its mainly a factor of it being the closest. I always order the chicken burrito bowl, so the salsa has a big impact on the overall taste since you're able to mix everything around to your liking. I just prefer Pancheros salsa over Chipotle's.
I'm not the biggest BTB fan. The first time I had it I thought it was the greatest thing ever, but I was also pretty drunk at the time. After trying it sober it lost a lot of its flair.
That being said, if its after 2am I'm going to South U Pizza.
The whole wheat tortilla on a giant burrito is so good. I always go with a veggie burrito, so I suppose I might be missing on the low quality meat. Still, the diablo sauce is the best part. Far superior to any of the sauces at the othe burrito joints, imo.
Don't care for BTB. I like seeing my burrito made in front of me. Anytime I've requested anything different at BTB they fuck it up.
If I'm drunk, Pancheros. For lunch/dinner, Chipotle. I wish they were open late and next to bars. I've never had Pancheros sober. Qbdoba is too far.
Burritos: Chiptole > BTB = Pancheros >> Qboda
Quesadilla: Pancheros wins hands down. The fresh pressed tortillas make the whole damn thing. I've had BTB once and it just seemed normal...though their green sauce is probably the best dipping sauce.
I love Chipotle though because their ingredients just seem so damn fresh compared to every burrito place i've ever been to. I personally feel Q can't wrap their burritos ever because the tortilla they use keeps falling apart and cracking, and their ingredients are only so-so.
The school also took away BTB from north campus about 3-4 years back and replaced it with Burrito Joint....quite possibly the worst move in history. Those north campus BTB burritos were legen----WAIT FOR IT---dary.
Thanks for making me hungry now.
the only way you pay for pancheros is if you are in an altered state of mind
Carnitas is the choice meat, wherever I find my burrito.
Chipotle is the best. Qdoba is a close second. BTB and Pancheros just suck.
1. Authentic burrito
2. Find a friend and get a pizza
3. Use cost of one campus burrito to make several delicious burritos in your house
4. Campus burrito
Nothing can beat Chipotle! I could eat those all day!!!
It was the once legendary two pound burrito at Pancheros. It was okay I guess, but nothing that special. Then again I always thought Bell's pizza was the greasiest stuff on earth. So my opinion may be in the minority.
BTB gets props for the whole wheat tortilla... and now Chipptle has brown rice. So good... i can't decide
For you downtown types, the rolled sandwiches at Eastern Flame.. kavi rolls?.. or some such... are great, cheap drunk food. Nothing like spicy chicken tikka in a roll at 3am
I think a better conversation would be the shittiest burrito in Ann Arbor. I was an undergrad from 2005-2009. You should probably mention when you were in Ann Arbor because a shitty burrito joint will not be in business long, unless you're located near Granger and Packard (I'm looking at you, Burrito Joint). Well anyhow, my shitty burrito joint Top 5 would be (in descending order of shittiness):
- West Quad's Burrito Stand - I'm pretty sure there was a direct pipe that lead from each vegan in East Quad's toilet to the West Quad Burrito Stand. There is no way actual steak or chicken could taste that poorly.
- Rio Wraps - in business on E William St circa 2008-2009ish, they did have a $2 taco day, but their burritos also tasted terribly. I'm a huge fan of tortillas that did not sit in a bag in the back of a Chevy Nova for 3 months, which may be why I'm a bigger fan of Panch than most here.
- Burrito Joint - See above comments about Pierpont Commons. I made the mistake once too.
- Tio's - Nothing made me angrier than seeing Tio's on Man vs. Food and having friends from out of town ask if we could go there when we went up to A2 for a game this past fall.
- Salsarita's - Open for about a year and a half, the "burrito cantina" was located a few doors down from Bar Louie on E Liberty, and was slightly better than the above mentions in my opinion. However, they suffered from being in a shitty location, and having their cook dump an entire cannister of Morton's into each one of their marinades.
I was actually a fan of Rio Wraps. Thought their burritos were pretty decent, and perfect for lunch during class in Mason Hall. But I do agree that Burrito Joint is awful, but somehow still open.
The burrito mantra: "Queso Queso Queso" - it's the great leveler. Without it Chipotle will always be second tier.
But anyone ever heard of Tijuana Flats?
Important factors for me:
Availability of queso
Availability of ground beef
Availability of chimichanga.
I think being raised on Taco Bell as 'mexican food' has endeared me to ground beef. The steak and barbacoa is always very mystery-meat-ish at these burrito places. You never know what you're going to get when you bite into a chunk of meat (fat? grissle? chewy tendons? who knows!). So because of that, I have an affinity for Tio's, Moe's, and in the DC area, California Tortilla. I also sometimes like a chimichanga, and that's really what I like Tio's for (not so much their burritos). Chipotle's small menu annoys me (no queso or ground beef or chimichanga) although I like their standard burrito well enough.
I never went to Qdoba or BTB on campus. I was always a Panchero's man.
I now live in VA, and there is only Chipotle out here. Let me put this to rest once and for all. I would walk back to Ann Arbor to get a Panchero's burrito. Chipotle sucks. They make good chicken tacos, but their burritos are the worst things ever. I miss you Panchero's.
Since all are the same idea, if I lived in Ann Arbor, I'd go BTB every time. It's local at least (although I doubt they buy local produce and meat).
I miss the place that used to be on William(?) called the Burro.
Baja Fresh would get my vote, but Qdoba is a very close second.
So I was at Pancheros today and found this old thread on my phone. I've always had a good impression of Pancheros and had a hard time understanding why so many people bashed it... until today. I think I figured it out:
tacos > burritos @ Pancheros
I usually get the tacos @pancheros. Of all the things on their menu, their tortillas & carnitas are certainly at the top of their quality scale, and I normally get carnitas tacos. Today I decided to try a chicken burrito and it was very average. Their chicken is nowhere near as good as qdoba and the rice is not very good period. So next time at Pancheros try tacos with carnitas and I think you'll have a much better opinion of their food.
All that said, here is my order:
Qdoba > Pancheros > Chipotle > BTB