Eat This: Chipotle

General Summary
For many years, I was an outspoken naysayer of the Chipotle. I found the food unappetizing, the prices too steep, and the overall experience overrated. However, the discovery of the steak/guac combo has made me change my tune, and now I am a weekly visitor of the fine establishment that is Chipotle. If you’re ever in the market for a nice burrito, bowl, taco, or quesadilla, Chipotle’s got your back.

Guacamole
Flavor: 8/10
Consistency: 10/10
Happiness Level: 10/10
Overall Assessment: I love guac, and more specifically, I love Chipotle’s guac. It is half the reason I go to Chipotle in the first place and is definitely the reason my bowls always end up being nearly $15. Apart from getting the occasional large chunk of raw onion in a bite, there is absolutely nothing I would change about the guacamole. Even though it does cost extra, I would definitely recommend that you get guac on your next trip to Chipotle.

Queso
Cheesiness: 7/10
Consistency: 4/10
Flavor: 5/10
Overall Assessment: I had heard such a wide range of opinions on Chipotle’s queso, I felt I could no longer avoid trying it for myself. While some have said that Chipotle’s queso is horrible and doesn’t deserve to classify itself as the cheesy concoction we all know and love, I found it to be fine. It looked fine, it tasted fine, the price was fine – overall, the whole experience was kind of underwhelming. I would say their queso is something more akin to a type of cheesy hummus than the traditional queso dip, but it certainly wasn’t the worst thing I’ve ever tasted. I think the lesson we can all take away from this is that you really do need artificial cheese to make queso work.

Bowl
Meat Quality: 10/10
Topping Quality: 9/10
Amount of Food: 10/10
Overall Assessment: The mistake I made during the dark years where I disliked Chipotle was that I always ordered a burrito. I hate burritos, I have always hated burritos, and I’m not sure why I thought ordering one here would be any different. Making the switch from a burrito to a bowl was a game changer. The meat options are excellent, the topping variety and freshness are superb, and the bowls always give you enough food for two meals. As extra as it is to get steak and guac both in a bowl, it is a splurge I am more than happy to make.

Atmosphere
Décor: 7/10
Friendliness: 8/10
Wait Time: 9/10
Overall Assessment: Because Chipotle is the food of choice for the college student masses, the lines at locations near college campuses are always especially daunting. Do not let this scare you away because the workers are extremely efficient at their jobs and get through the lines very quickly. My experiences with the workers at Chipotle have always been pleasant (apart from one particularly terse interaction at the Baltimore airport) and the restaurants are always kept clean, so no complaints about the atmosphere here.

Overall Evaluation: Average score of 8.1/10.

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