Ask Mr. Gold 

Wednesday, Oct 30 2002

Question:It’s Halloween today — got any Faustian bargains?


Chipotle Mexican Grill is a newish mega-chain of burrito outlets popping up in malls and ’plexes all over the country. The faux-industrial architecture comes from what looks like a shotgun marriage between the aesthetics of Soho and Bessemer, Alabama; a heaping helping of the capital comes from McDonald’s. The rad-dude marketing ("20 ounces isn’t the drink. It’s the burrito.") outdoes even the basest impulses of Taco Bell. But the burritos, enormous, squishy pillowcases of barbacoa, carne asada, carnitas and/or various vegetarian implements, aren’t bad, even stretched out with oceans of rice, beans and sour cream. And the carnitas are made with organic, sustainable, humanely raised Niman Ranch pork — each restaurant reportedly goes through enough organic pork in a year to support an entire Iowa family farm. You decide. 244 S. Beverly Drive, Beverly Hills; 4718 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey; 3409 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena; and many other locations.

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