Mas Burritos

The morning I went to Mas Burritos, I absolutely, definitely was NOT going to have a burrito. I’d been to Tortilla just the day before, where I’d gorged on my fifth burrito in eight days. Six in nine days would be ridiculously greedy.

A few hours of writing about ladies’ things for Cosmo later, I decided I deserved a treat. You know, because I’m worth it. But what could I treat myself to? I didn’t have the money for shoes. I am morally opposed to cupcakes. And I don’t like massages. What I needed was something that cost around £6-£7, wasn’t seven different pastel shades, and definitely didn’t involve me taking all my clothes off and being rubbed by a stranger. What on earth could I do?

Mas Burritos is easy to find, boasting a bright-yellow sign that told me this was definitely the kind of place that would shout ‘ARRRRRIBA!’ at me when I walked through the door, without a hipster lamp fashioned from beer bottles in sight. I went to the Covent Garden branch, not yet realising there was a Soho branch closer to my offices. That disappointment, like so many others, was yet to come.

ARRRRIBA!

Sure enough, it had tablecloths decorated with oranges, and a little tin foil model of a Mexican man playing a Mexican guitar in a Mexican hat. So far, so good.

Do Not Chew

I ordered the usual chicken – tinga this time, cooked in chipotle adobe marinade – noting that the black beans were almost sinister in their blackness, like a bucket of beetles with the legs pulled off. I also noticed, with some unease, that the cheese they used wasn’t cheddar, as usual, but a combination of cheddar and Red Leicester.

As any of you who have ever eaten a packed lunch at a British comprehensive will know,* there are two types of kids: those who eat orange cheese and those who eat normal cheese. It’s a fierce divide, each side viewing the other with mortal mistrust, like the Sharks and the Jets, but less stabby and more cheesy.

I always viewed Orange Cheese Kids with suspicion, especially as their sandwiches were usually made with brown bread. Madness. Despite the realisation that Mas Burritos is ruled by a not-to-be-trusted Orange Cheese Kid, I persevered, adding some pineapple and sweetcorn salsa. After trying it with great success at The Flying Burrito, I was filled with hope.

Unfortunately, said hope was wildly misplaced, as instead of small hits of sweetness lifting my burrito into the sublime every other bite, I was faced with hulking great chunks of pineapple which tasted like they’d been fished out of a can last week and stopped pretty much any other flavour coming through.

The bit of the burrito that had escaped Captain Pineapple’s evil clutches was weirdly tasteless. It just kind of sat there in my mouth, going ‘meh,’ like a sulky teenager. After I’d gone, it probably moped in a darkened room, listening to Mumford and Sons and refusing to tidy its room. It wasn’t awful, and would have been fairly inoffensive without the pineapple. But for £5.85, I’d expect something a bit more exciting.

"Why did you even HAVE me? I HATE you!"

I hadn’t bothered ordering a drink (a really bad idea: if any meal needs a drink to go with it, it’s one primarily comprising bread, dry meat and hot sauce), and as if in divine retribution, the door of the drinks cabinet hit the back of my chair every time someone opened it. I could have moved, but I seemed to have caught a debilitating dose of ennui from my burrito, and couldn’t be bothered.

On the plus side, you can get another moribund burrito for half price if you return to Mas Burritos the next day clutching your receipt. It also boasts three different types of Cholula sauce: Chili Garlic and Chipotle, on top of the usual Original. I tried them all in rotation throughout my meal in order to give you the DEFINITIVE review. In the spirit of the 2012 Olympics, I have awarded them medals:

GOLD: Original

SILVER: Chipotle

BRONZE: Chili Garlic

There. Now you don’t have to fret about missing out on tickets to the ping-pong.

*Private school kids eat quinoa wrapped in lettuce leaves and spinach jus tartlets and stuff rather than cheese sandwiches.

Mood before: Burrito number six? I’M COMING TO GET YOU!

Mood after: *Shrugs. Wears fringe too long* 

Rating: Food 5/10, Ambience 6/10, Staff 7/10, Value 6/10

Where: Chancery Lane, Covent Garden, Tower Hill, Monday-Friday

Closest tube: Ummm…Chancery Lane, Covent Garden and Tower Hill?

Web: Find them here / @MasBurritos (They’ve only tweeted twice, don’t get excited)

Recommended?: Not bovvered

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