Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fast Food is Junk ... But Burritoville??

My crazy schedule has really been getting in the way of life and blogging seems to unfortunately taken a back seat this week to making a living.  I have a bunch of photos which need text and some text needing photos, so thank you loyal followers for your patience but rest assured there is content on the way.

I thought I was going to have 4 nights in Palm Springs, CA but within an hour of getting there our 4 days were filled with flights and the few hours I figured I'd spend with my computer disappeared as though David Copperfield was my best friend.

Last week I was out in Woodbury, Long Island and glanced over to see a "Burritoville" sign amongst a few fast food places.  There used to be a Burritoville across the street from me in Manhattan but it's long gone however the memories of many "Route 66" burritos, (and the rest of the franchise), lives on.

There is a very strong "veggie" presence on the menu but vegan is not as well defined.  I thought I could find some non pork infused beans and perhaps the rice wasn't cooked in chicken stock.  I always assume it is unless someone specifically says it's not, but brown rice on a fast food menu is always a better find than white.  I had guacamole, lettuce, tomato and pico de gallo available and I knew those were vegan.  Tofu sour cream, soy chicken, beef and steak are listed as are soy cheese.  Since many of these products contain egg or milk I opted to go with what I was reasonably sure was vegan.

For $4.00 how can you say no?  And there was a coupon for 2 for 1 I was given the next time I find myself in Woodbury, NY.   So how in the world does a company sell a burrito for $2.00?
I ordered the whole wheat and when you unwrap the food it's hot and moist but not ready to disintegrate in your hands like some burritos can be.  I like when food holds together like good street food should.  Solid isn't the right word, neither is sturdy but perhaps non-flimsy or non-mushy might work.  The burrito itself isn't that big but it's dense.  There is no lack of filling power with this meal.

Is this the future of fast food?  Is it like "medium" food?  I guess the word being used on their website is "quick serve" which really describes it perfectly.
So here's the big problem.  I wasn't sure the counter person understood me.  I wanted to know, yes or no,  if the rice was cooked in chicken stock.  What I got was like, "Yes the rice is in the vegetarian burrito."  I have no problem with English as a second language at all but this was frustrating and silly.  At the very least, Burritoville might print up an ingredient list to ally any fears us finicky vegans might bring to the counter.

All that being said, all the difficulties with the language barrier impeding clarity, this burrito was outstanding.  Brown rice, guac, beans, tomato, lettuce and tofu sour cream combined in a perfect holder. Each bite was packed with flavor, yes the chorizo does stand firmly front and center, but there was a great combination of chew through the tortilla and the soft creaminess of the filling.

I did send Burritoville an email asking for clarification but so far haven't heard anything back.  Perhaps if anyone has more information they might be able to get it back to me for a subsequent post.  This is without a doubt the face of fast, cheap, and vegan options.

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