the Intestinal Apocalypse Monthly Apparel Bazaar

Intestinal Apocalypse Monthly, June 2006back to archive

Bite. Chew. Mull. skims the surface of a memorably mustachioed month in our local taqueria trenches.

The old man takes a lickin' in this month's Dear Beano, but manages to emerge from the bust-up with merely a torn labrum, a strained oblique muscle, and several minor quadriceps contusions.

And it's a particularly hard-chargin' Obstinate User Commentary, all the way down to a pair of submissions that play the single-word ALL-CAPS card - a sure sign of militant obstinance every time.

Get lean and fit with This Month in Extreme Taco Close-Ups.

Embedded within our (epilogue) is this issue's second reference to JMJ Bullock. Too close for comfort, indeed.

Pull up a food.

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Hi Mom

With only four burritos weighing in on the south side of our crucial eight-mustache threshold, May could go down as one of the most beloved months in Burritoeater annals. 13 slabs at an average OMR of 8.19? A tofu-spackled, nine-mustache colossus at Papalote? A near-miss niner at El Burrito Express? Them's some credentials.

In an unlikely twist, it was also the month that San Francisco's fashion runway of a burrito shop, Andalé on Chestnut St., outmustached gritty favorite Taq. San Francisco. What's next, the Inner Sunset Strikers taking out Brazil in the World Cup?

TAQ. EL BALAZO (Upper Haight), 5/2/06, Super Carne Desebrada: 8.33 Mustaches
Nearly as squishy as a new roll of Charmin – albeit much, much more delicious, and without all that dry, troublesome fiber.

CINCO DE MAYO TAQ. (Portola), 5/4/06, Super Pollo Adovado: 8.17 Mustaches
Spice was fearsome. Intangibility was on-point. Burrito was sharp. Action was go.

SALSA TAQ. (Mission), 5/7/06, Pollo: 7.83 Mustaches
The internal cohesion of a Salsa slab generally boasts a density level comparable to Topeka, rather than the Tokyo-like crush of most contemporary burritos.

EL BURRITO EXPRESS (Western Addition), 5/9/06, Super Bronco Chicken: 8.83 Mustaches
What a food - nearly one for the ages. Anti-environmentalists will appreciate El Burrito Express' habit of presenting a free Styrofoam plate directly under every burrito eaten on-premise.

TAQ. EL TACO LOCO (24th St.) (Mission), 5/12/06, Super Pollo Asado: 8.25 Mustaches
From bite one, this lengthy burrito had the knack - though it still underachieved, in our book.

TAQ. EL TORO (Mission), 5/15/06, Super Carnitas: 7.58 Mustaches
A structural battle we won't soon forget. Several bites of El Toro’s fearlessly grilled beef and long-cut onion brought back memories of endless strings of spaghetti we sucked up back in the days of

LA MEXICANA (Civic Center / Tenderloin), 5/17/06, Super Carnitas: 7.83 Mustaches
Someone, anyone - get this place some character, on the double.

TAQ. SAN FRANCISCO (Mission), 5/19/06, Super Pollo Asado: 7.83 Mustaches
A lamentable lack of salsa let us down. Let’s hope it was just an off-night.

ANDALÉ (Marina), 5/22/06, Supremo Mesquite Chicken: 8.17 Mustaches
With a pair of momentum-swinging slabs over the last eight months, Andalé's burritowork has earned our respect.

CHAVO'S (South of Market), 5/24/06, Super Carnitas: 8.25 Mustaches
Words and phrases included in our latest Chavo's review: "outsized," "towering inferno," "hellacious battalion," "pasty and tasty," "all-business," and of course, "rad." You get the picture.

FOUNTAIN CAFÉ (Financial District), 5/26/06, Breakfast (Ham): 8.09 Mustaches
Fountain Café outdid even its previous entries in our unofficial Squattiest Slab competition.

TACOS EL TONAYENSE (Harrison/14th St.) (Mission), 5/28/06, Super al Pastor: 8.25 Mustaches
This streaky effort pulled off that all-hot bite trick. That’s one of our favorite tricks.

PAPALOTE (Mission), 5/30/06, Super Marinated Tofu: 9.00 Mustaches
Time seemed to stop for the 15-bite duration of this gold-plated masterfoodpiece.

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Gratitude, Disgruntlement, and the Persistent Use of "Zero"

Care to jump into the hurly-burly with our crotchety old taqueria sage? Send your questions, comments, anecdotes, or invective-laden rants to Mr. Cook at He's usually fairly mild-mannered around early summer, so now's a good time to give him the ol' fist-shaking what-for and not receive too harsh a verbal pummeling in reply. No guarantees, though.

Dear Beano: You guys provide a vital resource for SF residents. If it weren’t for craigslist and Burritoeater, I’d probably live somewhere else. Like, someplace where I can actually afford rent.
Dear Apocalypse reader: Well, thanks. Keep in mind that craigslist now maintains an online presence in Halifax. Nice town, very affordable. No word on the Nova Scotia taqueria scene, though.

Dear Beano: I was on a date with a guy at a taqueria, and I didn’t get a burrito. Instead, I had a quesadilla. I was trying to be cute. Good move?
Dear Apocalypse reader: Finally, this column’s first romance advice question - and Valentine’s Day was four months ago. Listen, if you’re really trying to win him over, order yourself a sesos torta. Nothing used to set my young dating heart on fire quite like a brains sandwich across the table. Going the hard-to-get route? Tell him you already had dinner and just order a side of guac. Don’t skip the dessert flan!

Dear Beano: You might as well throw darts at a list of taquerias to come up with your rankings. I've got zero respect for your palate.
Dear Apocalypse reader: We actually tried using a dartboard to rank places on Burritoeater for a short while, but we kept on "missing" the board and impaling our VP of Sales in the neck. One day he brought in one of those Velcro ball “dartboards” made for kids, but it was the gaming equivalent of eating a soggy wrap. Those days are over.

Dear Beano: Great concept, but your rating/taste is pretty off. Because La Salsa and Andalé are rated above El Farolito, you have absolutely zero credibility. At least you are aware that 360 Degree Burritos is the worst place ever. I will not be using your suggestions until you clean up your act!
Dear Apocalypse reader: I’d suggest you invert our top-to-bottom rankings and visit all our least favorite places, but then you’d end up at Zero – er, 360 Degree pretty quickly on that tour.

Dear Beano: Generally, no beans for me. Sour cream and lettuce are a must.
Dear Apocalypse reader: Let us know how that taco salad turns out.

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Iowa Seems to Be a Happy Place

Burritoeater users, Intestinal Apocalypse readers: the floor is yours. Although hopefully you all brought your own pillows and sleeping bags.

Send your taqueria-related commentary to We've got a few old, dusty Betamax videos of How to Be an Effective Online Forum Participant this month for anyone who drops us a line. Don't delay.

(Comments may be edited for spelling, clarity, and/or brevity at our editorial board's discretion.)

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“I can't believe you gave such high scores to a few of the burrito trucks. A truck burrito will NEVER be as good as a place like La Taqueria. Truck burritos are never fully hot, and many times the condiments they toss in are lukewarm due to lack of proper refrigeration aboard the trucks. Many times, I've noticed the cheese on those trucks has gone off.”

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La Salsa is TERRIBLE, done.”

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“I tried the super carne asada from Taq. San Francisco. It was fabulous. I would give them extra credit, in fact, for the mustaches drawn on the sexy chicas on a beer poster. I am now exiled in Dubuque, Iowa, and need all the reminders of SF I can get, so I look forward to the Apocalypse each month.”

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"You may want to check in on Sonia's on 16th St. It may have shut down. If so, it wouldn't really qualify as the lowest-rated taqueria on Burritoeater any longer, would it? Did you really go there?"

(Yes. Yes, we did. Once. -Ed.)

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Saucy Retina, Spicy Cornea

Cutting-edge, zoom-in technology has, at long last, enabled us to uncover the secret ingredient that makes an ojo taco such a contemporary delicacy.

(Many thanks to Howard Myint and Gregory Dicum.)

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The Apocalypse is proud to be a Quinn Martin production. Although rumors abound that it could soon turn into a Monroe Ficus production.

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Yours, in delicious horchata,