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What’s Spanish for “hubris”?

Posted by DNR 20 Jun 2008 20 Comments

There’s a new taqueria on Hillsborough in the Kroger shopping center that’s called (really) “The Best Burrito”. They’re not claiming to have the best split pea soup in town. They’re saying that they make and sell the best burritos in Durham. I was expecting a stomachful of schadenfreude after my lunch of justice, but although they’re guilty of shameless false advertising, they do have some pretty good food.

The interior actually reminds me a lot of Guajillos, if they tried to make it look appetizing, and the guy running the place could not have been nicer. The menu is varied without being gimmicky, and the prices are expected, if a little inflated – $7.50 for a big burrito, $2 for a taco. We went with the “super special” burrito – rice, beans, beef, chorizo, sour cream, guacamole, and salsa – and a couple of tacos (al pastor and barbacoa). I was happy to see some flour tortilla chips (at least as good as the ones at Carburrito’s), and the house salsa was better than most.

The burrito itself was good, but a bit overwhelmed by the condiments and chorizo, which is so intensely flavored that it’s almost unidentifiable as pork (unlike the subtle chorizo at Chubby’s). The tacos were huge and tasty, especially the barbacoa, which tasted a lot like the carne guisada I’ve had at other taquerias. The owner was also talking up his mushroom quesadilla, and it looks like almost everything on the menu has a vegetarian counterpart.

Like Chubby’s, The Best Burrito is more “accessible” than some of the other taquerias in the area, but it’s certainly authentic, save some strange menu options (chicken fingers?). If anybody tries their mushroom dishes be sure to let us know!

The Best Burrito (map)
Sunday – Saturday: 9.30 am – 9 pm

20 Comments »

  • Gary said:

    So who *does* have the best burrito in Durham?

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  • Alex said:

    I just ate there and was pleasantly surprised by the fact that the owner is the ex-owner (the original one) of Taqueria Lopez. If anyone went there a year ago and went back now, they’d notice a difference. The menu has changed (it’s become remarkably similar to places like El Rodeo), along with most of the staff, and they’ve gotten rid of their beloved Salsa Bar (dumbed it down to be fair)!

    The Best Burrito was indeed delicious and the proprietor is a wonderfully nice guy who’s hospitality, along with the great food, will keep me coming back time after time.

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  • David said:

    Their Mexicana Burrito was fantastic. The ingredients were fresh, the chicken was delicious. I enjoyed Lopez, when the salsa-bar was in effect, but it has definitely lost it’s luster.

    The Best Burrito will be replacing Lopez in my weekly-lunch rotation.

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  • Carpe Durham/Reasonably Prudent Person said:

    So that is what happened to Lopez! Good info, thanks.

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  • foodiecopnc said:

    So does Best Burrito have a salsa bar?

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  • DNR said:

    Unfortunately no, but they haven’t been open too long so they may in the future. Given that it’s the Lopez guy, it’s probable.

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  • chonblanco said:

    Hold up. Taqueria Lopez is no more? or changed hands?

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  • Alex said:

    I’ve been in a dispute with some friends of mine about this. After talking to the owner of The Best Burrito yesterday, he confirmed that Taqueria Lopez has in fact changed hands and that this occurred about 2 months ago. Prior to that, the guy who took over Lopez was hanging around for a good amount of time to learn the ropes and look at the cost of keeping that place open. Some say that the current owner of Lopez may have been a partner with the original owner. That makes a lot of sense, and gives credence to the claim that he’s been there the whole time. The current owner of Lopez is making attempts to turn the space into a nightclub after hours, which is to say the least, weird.

    Regardless, the super nice guy has moved across the street and his tacos and burritos are great!

    Go to both places, I say!

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  • chonblanco said:

    So maybe that explains my rather unsavory experience there last time I went not too long ago. They were probably working out some kinks.

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  • Beth said:

    Made our first visit today based on the recommendation here. I had the beef taco – meat was delicious but I was disappointed that the tortillas are store-bought and not homemade. I asked for cheese, and was asked if I wanted mozzarella. That was very interesting. My husband had the chorizo taco and said it was good but he couldn’t tell it was pork.

    The restaurant is very clean and the people working there are very nice. Next time I’ll try a burrito.

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  • Fuzzy said:

    3 of us went this weekend. We found it average and unremarkable with regards to the food, though the people there were *very* pleasant.

    We had a supreme burrito, a hawaiian burrito, chorizo quesadillas, queso dip, guacamole dip, and chips.

    The only item which we universally thought was above average was the chorizo, which was nicely spiced for a change — a lot of local chorizo tends to be pretty bland.

    The rice had a terrible texture and consistency, overly mushy and just. . .ugh. This was the only actual negative thing.

    As it is, we thought that Carburritos, the Chipotles chain, and Fiesta Grill are all significantly better.

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  • Phil said:

    So for “hubris”: I did some digging through my monster Oxford Spanish/English dictionary, and also through a Spanish Dictionary of Synonyms. No entries for “hubris” in either one, though here are some options:

    orgullo (pride – either the good kind or the bad kind)
    orgullo desmedido (excessive pride)
    arrogancia
    soberbia.
    :-)

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  • DNR said:

    Carpe Durham officially has the best readership/commenters on the internet.

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  • Mohamed said:

    I’m not sure I fully believe the owner of Best Burrito. I first went to Taqueria Lopez just a few days after they opened, and it was run by the (no surprise) Lopez family, with owner Alberto Lopez there on day 1. I also just had lunch today (August 2) at Taqueria Lopez, and Alberto was there working.

    I LOVE Taqueria Lopez, and the recent expansion of their lunch menu (http://tacolopez.bravehost.com/) with 20 specials under $6, all with all-you-can-eat chips & salsa, keeps me coming back relative to on- or near-campus Mexican price rip-offs like Armadillo Grill and Chipotle. Today, I had lunch special #6, and it was absolutely delicious.

    Though I do wish they’d stock the salsa bar better…

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  • Beth said:

    I went back and this time had a burrito and chips and queso. There are coupon mailings that went out last week so I got $2 off my meal. I must say the food was excellent, and the owner, Mr. Dennis, is a great guy. He is partners with the guy who owns the big Mexican grocery store on Roxboro – all his food is made fresh from scratch, and he uses only Angus beef, which they trim before cooking.

    I think they’re going to need a bigger restaurant once the Duke students come back and find this place.

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  • durhamfood said:

    Beth: I doubt it. Cosmic is a. near Duke, b. delivers to Duke on points, no cash required, c. has a hell of reputation with Duke students (undeservedly so, imo).

    Anyway, we ate at Best Burrito the other day. The chorizo is indeed good. Other than that, it’s nothing special. I would like to try their mushroom stuff at some point. I’ll be back, but mostly due to being really really disappointed last time I went to Lopez.

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  • Tooth said:

    I went to Best Burrito this past weekend and it seems that they have a completely new (and very extensive) menu. For what it’s worth, I had tacos pastor and thought they were kind of bland.

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  • Jane said:

    My son and I ate there this afternoon. The air was humid and unpleasant on a lovely day, and it’s dark and cramped. I used to love, love, love Taqueria Lopez, the guy was smiley and funny, his sweet pregnant wife and those kids that bounced up and down and tattled on each other. At Best Burrito, the waitress was sweet but the cook/proprietor did nothing but scowl. The tacos asada were my favorite, with the sauteed onions. The asada today at “Best Burrito” was full of gristle! They did not bring my son what he ordered. What he got was big and mushy and not very tasty. There are no fountain drinks, there is no taco salad. We won’t go back. Where did the Taqueria Lopez family go???

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  • Best Burrito to become La Vaquita II « Carpe Durham said:

    [...] Burrito to become La Vaquita II We have received multiple tips via comment and email that Best Burrito will become La Vaquita II on April [...]

  • Tooth said:

    Even though La Vaquita has already been written about on this blog I’d like to see a few words written about “La Vaquita #2″ which has moved into the old Best Burrito location.

    [Reply]

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