Good but Expensive
I’m not the biggest fan of Chipotle – mostly because it’s boring and expensive. I understand why people might seek it in places that don’t have a great taqueria (or taco truck) in every corner, but I fail to understand its appeal in California. Still, my daughter likes it, so we ordered it for lunch a few days ago.
This time I decided to try the quesadilla, which is basically a deconstructed burrito grilled long enough to melt the cheese. It’s served with 3 “sides” which really mean the ingredients you’d otherwise have inside the burrito, things like rice, beans, salsas and sour cream Burrito extras, like guacamole, are still extra for quesadillas.
The steak quesadilla was tasty, but it felt smaller than a burrito (probably just my imagination), and having the salsa/sour cream/guacamole (the latter came in a different container) outside the burrito only made it more difficult to eat. The shape of the quesadilla, and the fact that it’s cut in two diagonally made it even more impractical, the filling kept falling out as I tried to dip it.
At $11.40 (prices vary by location*), it was a pretty poor value – though I’m sure no worse than anything else at Chipotle.
On the plus side, the ingredients were fresh and the beef has less gristle/fat than that at some local taquerias. Also on the plus side, Chipotle is very vegan friendly. Not only do they offer sofritas, a plant based protein, as a vegan alternative to meats, but their rice, beans, tortillas and chips are all vegan. Often times, Mexican restaurants use chicken broth for their rice, or lard for their beans and/or tortillas.
Chipotle – San Leandro
1505 E 14th St.(510) 667-100310:45 AM – 10 PM
* For the sake of looking at how minimum wages impacted on Chipotle’s prices, I used their very helpful website to price a steak quesadilla at different Chipotles. This is what I found:
In Seattle, WA, with the highest minimum wage in the country at $16.69/hr, a Chipotle steak quesadilla is $9.85
In San Francisco, CA with a $16.32/hr minimum wage, it’s $11
In Berkeley, CA with a $16.32/hr minimum wage, it is $10.25.
In Manhattan, NY with a $15/hr minimum wage, it’s $11.15
In my city, San Leandro, CA, with a $15/hr MW, it’s $11.40
In Fresno, CA, with a $14/hr MW, it’s $9.65
In Peoria, IL with an $11/hr MW, it’s $9.65
In Tulsa, OK, with a $7.25/hr MW, it’s $9.55
In Hinesville, GA, with a $7.25/hr MW, it’s $9.65