Friday, September 24, 2010


Over the last half decade or so the burrito scene in Toronto has erupted. American chains such as Chipotle and Moe’s have joined local upstarts such as Burrito Boyz and Mucho Burrito with much fanfare. Offering up San Francisco or Mission Style burritos opinions of the product has been varied. Comparisons to the great institutions which claim birthrights are constant and much like in San Francisco’s Mission District customer loyalty is strong.

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The Mission style of burrito seems to have been introduced to San Franciscans during the early or late 60’s depending on who’s version of reality you want to believe. No one however disputes what it is. Comprised of an oversized flour tortilla stuffed to the gills with meat, (either the walking or swimming kind) beans, cheese, pico de gallo and Spanish rice. Add ins such as sour cream, guacamole, minced chilies and cilantro (ya, I know but I like it as long as it’s used in moderation) customize the diners experience. Veggie options are available too. Though occasionally fried they’re most often steamed. The resulting steam allows the tortilla to stretch and contain the ample filling. The whole unit is then wrapped in foil to retain heat and provide structural integrity. Properly made it should be impossibly full and not fall apart.
It should come as no surprise then that the small kitchen in the Village by the Grange food court named Mission Burrito has both jumped into the burrito pool and is serving the San Francisco style wrap. Opened in 2008 Mission Burrito is committed to serving fresh quality ingredients at reasonable prices. They’re more than just burritos too. Tacos, quesadillas and even Mexican inspired salads round out the menu.

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So on to the food.
If you order the burrito combo you get a can of pop, chips and pico as well.
The chips were nice and crispy and the pico was very fresh tasting. The dollop of hot sauce on top gave it a nice kick.

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Burrito options include shrimp, steak, carnitas, chicken and veggie. I opted for the carnitas. Slow roasted pork that is seasoned and shredded. I was asked how hot I liked it and I answered “Pretty hot.” That meant a half ladle of hot salsa was added. Now, I haven’t been to San Fran and don’t know what the paradigm is but as far as the local contenders go, it was simply the best burrito I’ve had. I simply unwrapped mine since it should hold together but the “Proper” way is to peel back the foil as you go. The heat was pretty close to perfect. A time release type heat that really grew on me. My mouth was more than tingling when I was finished.

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Though not very convenient for me I do look forward to further visits and samplings from the rest of the menu. Service is from the food court side, not the street.
Mission Burrito is located at 109 McCaul St. in the Village by the Grange food court in downtown Toronto.

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Mission Burrito on Urbanspoon

Well that’s all for now.


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