Everyone on the West Coast (if any of them are reading this) is just gonna hate, but I can’t help it. I was born in New York City and lived for 28 years within spitting distance of place which gives you an idea of what kind of Mexican food I was exposed to. Ony first visit to San Francisco I visited Pancho Villa (or as I pronounced it when recounting the story to Anna G. “P-aaaann-Cho Vill-uhhh”). I bit into the burritto and immediately got it: I realized that THIS was a burrito.
Why it is impossible for the greatest city on earth to get a good Cali-Mex style burrito going is beyond my ken, but so it is. That said, I still enjoy my fair share of both burritos from places like Taqueria in Park Slope, La Esquina on the Lower East Side and even sometimes when I’m hammered super desperate in the East Village, the Cosmic Cantina NYU place next to my best friend’s building.
A couple years ago though, I discovered Pinche Taqueria. They had a little hole-in-the-wall space on Mott Street and then upgraded to a spot in that weird little triangular sliver by Broadway/Lafayette. Since then it is a battle of wills NOT to get the Fish Tacos every single time that I’m drunk, hungry, or even just walking around in the area.
Speaking only as an ignorant East Coast gringa, I can safely say that I think these are the absolute best tacos in New York. But that’s not ALL! A couple months ago it was like 3:30 PM. I realized I hadn’t eaten anything all day and that I was absolutely starving. I wandered into Pinche Taqueria and realized that a Fish Taco or 5 just wasn’t going to cut it. I got a chicken-based burrito and OH was it delcious. The tortilla was somehow toasty and crispy as it encircled the most flavorful chicken and spiciest pico de gallo I’ve ever had. Before you ask, yes, it was in that wide-fat style that distinguishes a poorly-crafted East Coast burrito, from it’s slimmer, more cyclindrical West Coast counterparts. That said, it was everything I wanted and for only 6 bucks.
333 Lafayette Street
New York, NY 10012