Refried Beans A Winner at Mexitaco
This is part 1 in a series where I attempt to discover Toronto's best burritos.
Mexitaco occupies an awkward spot in Toronto's burrito landscape. The taqueria, located on a corner lot at Shaw and Bloor, is oozing Mexicana. It's one of the few joints in the city that reminds me of my visits to dusty Mexican towns. There is a TV in one corner playing a Mexican version of the country music channel, basic wooden tables, sombreros on the walls and red, white and green sprinkled throughout. Warm days offer a pleasant patio.
But for all of its authentic, no-frills taqueria vibe, filling your stomach with one of their three varieties of burritos (chicken, beef and veggie) costs upwards of $8.99 plus tax which is definitely at the more expensive end of Toronto's options.
The problem is that Mexitaco only offers a burrito plate (see top photo) which means a small-ish burrito is teamed with a side salad, refried beans and a helping of yellow rice. For a little extra punch, there are a couple of salsa options, some marinated onion and freshly cut lime wedges. The restaurant definitely needs to offer a cheaper version (without the sides) to go.
On my most recent visit I order the veggie burrito. A moist lime-scented flour tortilla is filled with rice, beans, mushrooms, peas, corn and probably a few other vegetables that escaped my attention. Plated, this is definitely a knife and fork situation which works just fine but takes a bit of the romance out of the experience.
Overall, the taste was pretty good with the refried beans definitely among the best I've ever had. The burrito should have come with guacamole. I had to put in a special request to layer some in, and it would be nice if there were soy or dairy-free substitutes for the cheese and sour creme.
Also on the menu are a huge range of other Mexican dishes, all of which have photos plastered on Mexitaco's front window (and on their web site).