The Flying Burrito

The day I headed for The Flying Burrito, less than 24 hours after my previous burrito ‘experience’, I had the day off with a strapping young man. I mention this because I was already in a pretty good mood before I even got there. I hadn’t just given £2 to a Big Issue seller then gone to buy my delicious burrito only to find that the card machines weren’t working and that I was £2 short in cash.

No, I approached The Flying Burrito like Maria Von Trapp, except I wasn’t wearing curtains and hanging out of a tree. The restaurant is located in East London near Petticoat Lane, on Middlesex Street, here:

A map to the golden treasure! (A burrito)

The outside of the shop is quite cute, especially in the context of the drab surroundings of the East End – nice colours, a touch of blue, a hint of holidays about it, all that stuff. Inside, the staff were being slowly tortured by Buena Vista Social Club on a loop, which was probably a bit awful for them, but was nice for me and Mr Strapping.

We were the only people there, apart from a woman from some nearby offices (presumably) with a long order scribbled on a scrap of paper. But we’d arrived at 11am, because that’s the kind of thing you do when you have a day off, so fair enough.

I ordered the Chicken Pibil burrito, which the website describes thus:

“Think sub tropical paradise chicken. Marinated overnight in citrus juices and achiote paste, grilled to add a fiery authenticity then baked in banana leaves because we’re mad.”

In retrospect, I’m really not sure about the, ‘I’m mad, me!’ tone of this description, and the lack of hyphen between ‘sub’ and ‘tropical’ is annoying to a grammar pedant like me*, but hindsight is a wonderful thing. Anyway.

To my standard burrito, I decided to add the pineapple and sweetcorn salsa. It sounded weird, but other people have said nice things about it on other blogs, and try as I might I simply am not a renegade. I passed on the cactus leaf salsa because I hadn’t heard anything nice about it – and as I said, I have renegade issues. All this came to just £5.70, which seemed reasonable. Even better, the burrito was delicious.

It was fat and juicy. The table had Cholula original chilli sauce on it (the one you see lots of places, with the round wooden top), which I drizzled on each layer as I bit into it. The pineapple and sweetcorn salsa was, as promised by many reviewers before me, genius – it added a surprising sweet juiciness to alternate bites which made it stand out from the crowd.

A bloody nice burrito, yesterday

As a whole, the burrito had a good balance of ingredients, and was far from stingy. Captain StrappingFace had the same as me, but with a bit of everything, which made his burrito almost as big as him, caused the ingredients to squirt out a bit (not in a bad way), and forced the friendly man wrapping it up to use TWO pieces of tin foil. That’s generosity right there.

It was definitely the best burrito so far, and worth a trip if you’re in the area.


*Now I look at this again, I’m starting to wonder if there should be a hyphen between ‘tropical’ and ‘paradise’ as well. Or instead. My head hurts, and I might go for a little lie down now.

Mood before: Top of the world, looking down on creation

Mood after: If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands

Food: 8/10
Ambience: 8/10
Staff: 7/10
Value: 8/10

Where: 18 Blomfield Street, EC2M 7AJ and 62 Middlesex Street, E1 7EZ, weekdays only

Closest tube: Liverpool Street, Aldgate

Web: Find them here  / @flyingburritos

Recommended: Hell, yeah.


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