the Intestinal Apocalypse Monthly Apparel Bazaar

Intestinal Apocalypse Monthly, December 2007back to archive

November 2007 was one for the mustache-rated ages. Bite. Chew. Mull. offers a teary-eyed retrospective.

One especially out-of-touch member of's Board of Directors recently suggested changing the name of Dear Beano to simply Reader Mailbag. As a result, he was promptly stuffed into an actual mailbag and left in a corner of the boardroom to "find his own way out."

Fortunately, nobody ever lamely suggested we replace the name Obstinate Reader Commentary with Forum. Come on, no Laker Girls ever worked at Burritoeater Towers. A Primer reveals how you can get the most out of your visits to our Web contraption.

And this month's (epilogue) isn't the total disappointment it's been accused of on past occasions.

Club Slab is open. Pull up a food.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Fomenting Revolution, One Burrito At A Time

Some readers have wondered if our panel's collective palate has become the critical equivalent of an old softie after all the years of habañero punishment. No! Last month's burritos were just that good.

The OMRs (Overall Mustache Ratings) on November's taqueria slate read like a regular murderer's row: 8.33, 8.42, 8.83!, 8.92!, 9.17!! It was such a memorable month on the taqueria tiles, even La Placita -- the local shop responsible for the only two-mustache slab on Burritoeater record -- pleased our panel over Thanksgiving weekend with an admirable 7.67-mustache effort.

November's only big letdown, Taq. Zapata's 6.85 clunker, was mericifully sandwiched between a pair of hell-bringing burritos from Western Addition hotspots Green Chile Kitchen and current No. 1-ranked El Burrito Express. Meanwhile, San Francisco's other El Burrito Express, in the Outer Sunset, kicked down what was surely the most ridiculously huge slab we've ever had the intestinal fortitude to take down.

But the month's most astonishing performance was undoubtedly that of longtime also-ran Dos Piñas, which sucker-punched its way to our second-highest OMR ever: 9.17 mustaches. Apparently, the Potrero Hill staple is more than just great tortilla soup and Chevy's-esque aural wallpaper.

This was probably our finest burrito month yet. Real good times at the taqueria.

DOS PIÑAS TAQ. (Potrero Hill), 11/1/2007, Super Fajita al Pastor: 9.17 mustaches
Our po-faced panel sauntered into this old haunt at the dinner hour expecting more seven-something-mustache adequacy, only to emerge more stunned than the bonehead who accidentally wears a target shirt to a Taser convention. Slab of the month, and perhaps the year as well.

LA LAGUNA TAQ. (Bayview), 11/3/2007, Super Carnitas: 8.08 mustaches
Between the sharply grilled tortilla and enough melted cheese to make the whole of Wisconsin sport a state-wide grin, this burrito's swishes far outlasted its shrugs.

TAQ. LA ALTEÑA (Mission/22nd St.) (Mission), 11/5/2007, Super Pollo Asado: 8.00 mustaches
Airtight, sharply salsa’d, and longer than the director’s cut of Dances with Wolves, La Alteña’s first voyage into the balmy waters of Eight-Mustache Sound was a long time coming.

CARMELINA'S TAQ. (Inner Sunset), 11/7/2007, La Paz (Pollo en Salsa Roja): 7.83 mustaches
Mildly irritating burstage issues such as beany seep and saucy soak-through notwithstanding, we liked certain things about this burrito’s look and, more importantly, its taste.

EL BURRITO EXPRESS (Outer Sunset), 11/10/2007, Macho Grilled Steak / Carnitas Pork: 8.33 mustaches
Just as some trains go on and on and on, the Burrito Train’s macho burrito had staying power like we’d never seen. 15 inches. Two tortillas. 31 bites. 31 bites!

GREEN CHILE KITCHEN (Western Addition), 11/14/2007, Super Pork: 8.83 mustaches
The crosswise bites kept on coming, even if the vertical ones didn’t accumulate in any great number. But who cares which direction your burrito’s heading when the whole thing’s been lovingly tossed upon the grill post-construction? In any other month, this garners Slab of the Month honors; in November 2007, it wears the bronze medal.

TAQ. ZAPATA (Castro), 11/17/2007, Special Breakfast (Chorizo): 6.85 mustaches
If we'd wanted a cubic ton of rice, we would have at least preferred it to be smartly mixed with all the other ingredients. November's only truly lousy burrito.

EL BURRITO EXPRESS (Western Addition), 11/20/2007, Super Bronco Chile Verde Pork: 8.92 mustaches
Massive slices of avocado and some champion-caliber salsa verde laid our taste buds to waste, and let’s not overlook the robust cuts of sauced-up pork that seemed to pop up at all the right moments. This one fell just a few whiskers short of our fabled nine-mustache patheon.

LA PLACITA (Portola), 11/24/2007, Super Chicken: 7.67 mustaches
At this rate of improvement, the sky’s the limit: La Placita could someday win a Burritoeater Slab Scrum. You never know.

LUNA AZUL (South of Market), 11/27/2007, Super BBQ Chicken: 8.42 mustaches
A fireplug-shaped return to glory. Despite its awkward FutureMall food court setting, goofy logo featuring a blue moon with an absurdly curly schnozz, and all the adjacent Sony Style malarkey, Luna Azul at the Metreon is back on our good side.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>


The final Dear Beano of 2007 is a mighty testy affair. But -- spoiler forthcoming -- its ending is a happy one, and completely realistic, too.

Best of all, unlike last month, nobody has to endure any questions about San Diego burritos or Bros Tacos in Albany, NY.

Season's greetings to you, and us:

Dear Beano: Two worlds have collided. I love burritos with spicy salsa, and I love sales and working closely with people. But my success at face-to-face meetings has declined this past quarter due to my taqueria outings at lunch. Any recommendations on a good neutralizer or elixir to tame this al pastor dragon breath?
Dear Apocalypse reader: Try a little Old Spice. That always worked for me, and hey, it didn't exactly make the ladies run the other way, if you know what I mean, and I think you do. In the event you can't unearth a bottle of aftershave in your office desk, I suppose a few alternative remedies to your death breath would be Fresca, or perhaps just a shot or three of Yukon Jack (surprisingly smooth for 100 proof). If none of those do the trick, there's always vanilla formaldehyde.

Dear Beano: I resent these chorizo/rockabilly associations you periodically make. Just because I enjoy ground Mexican sausage doesn't mean I rub a pile of pomade into my hair every morning.
Dear Apocalypse reader: Does it mean you rub a pile of chorizo grease into your hair every morning? So I've compared certain chorizo burritos to Brian Setzer's hairdo over the years. What's the problem with that, fella? It could be worse: I could embed Brian Setzer Orchestra MP3s into the Intestinal Apocalypse each month, and we'd see more readers unsubscribe since that time in 2003 when I compared a La Placita burrito to Jack In The Box dumpster debris.

Dear Beano: I'm sure you've been following the guy who's only been eating "burrito bols" from Chipotle and chronicling his weight loss in a blog.
Dear Apocalypse reader: You bet. I roll out of bed late, spend the rest of the morning tweaking the lineup of my fantasy hockey team, then compete with several other friends in an online competitive bass fishing league before religiously checking in with Chipotless. It's inspiring! I do have a bit of a problem, however, with the protagonist of the piece constantly referring to his twice-daily, utensil-dependent food as a "burrito." Looks to me like a salad I had a few years ago, and you know I'm too much of a gentleman to have eaten that salad with my hands. On a related topic, has Manute Bol filed suit against Chipotle yet?

Dear Beano: Hello! My name is Vlad and I'm currently looking to purchase an aged Web site with active users/visitors. I came across via a Google search and I'm interested to know if it is for sale? If so, could you kindly reply back with a price you would be happy to sell for?
Dear Apocalypse reader: Hello Vlad! I'd be happy to sell to you. $100,000 US and it's yours! What a bargain, no? As a bonus, I'll throw in a complimentary license plate frame featuring the site's Great Mustache logo, which you can proudly display on your '86 Yugo as the site's new owner.

Dear Beano: Beano, when are you going to amount to something? It's time to give up the ghost on this whole burrito Web site stunt. You'll never make a dime off it.
Dear Apocalypse reader: But I just sold for a hundred grand. Everything's coming up Milhaus!

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Vegan Pickles Go Unmentioned For The 31st Consecutive Month

One obstinate reader strongly implies that we led him on about our current favorite burrito shop in the Financial District.

Another obstinate reader seems to have taken things into her own hands by threatening to bring her own appetizers to another taqueria we've championed for several seasons.

Still another obstinate reader grouses about our Mustache Chart's new top dog.

Good grief. You can't make anyone happy in this taqueria review Web site game. Once that $100K check from Vlad shows up, we're picking up and heading off to Montreal to start

But until then, feel free to submit your thoughts on San Francisco taquerias to us at

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

----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----

"I went to La Salsa the first week I started working in the Financial District and had the worst burrito I've ever eaten."

----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----

"I've reached the point of no return with El Castillito's chips. Few things in life are as lifeless, I'm telling you. Of course, I can't stay away from those burritos. But, I swear, next time I decide to eat there, I'm bringing my own bag of chips."

----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----

"El Burrito Express on Divisadero is now your No. 1 taqueria?! Dude. I quit eating there when we got Papalote and Green Chile Kitchen in the neighborhood. Don't get me wrong, it's a good spot, especially for the price. But the flavor is just kinda salty."
(Lucky you. Your part of town is lousy with champ taquerias these days -- so much so, we just published an effusive piece on Western Addition burrito shops in the December Blargh. -Ed.)

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

This Ain't Rocket Surgery, People

Two-and-a-half years after the launch of, our Informatics Division figured it was high time we offered site visitors a guided tour of the wealth of information it offers.

Did you know the photos on Burritoeater's splash page shuffle randomly? Well, they do. Simply fire up your browser's reload/refresh function, then relax/recline and enjoy the slideshow of slabular silliness.

The Blargh is home to a revolving set of content on the site's main page: a list of annotations referencing all recent taqueria visits (usually updated at least twice weekly); a short essay on something or other having to do with San Francisco's nonpareil taqueria scene; and, random plugs and/or bits of information like, Hey, listen to this rad Peanut Gallery podcast about burritos, starring Dan Johnson and Charles Gould.

If you are reading this right now, do not be fooled -- you are not reading the Blargh! You are reading the Intestinal Apocalypse,'s monthly missive available via gratis subscription and an online archive. Know your Blargh! Know your Apocalypse! Know how to differentiate between these two award-losing features.

The meat and potatoes (so to speak) of -- our extensive San Francisco taqueria listings -- can be sorted in four ways on the left navigation bar that appears on every page: by name, neighborhood, OMR (Overall Mustache Rating), or number of official visits. This method of data delivery is known in the business as "technological innovation." It is effective.

Important!: See where it says "Ads by Google" directly below the left navigation bar? Click these advertisements every time you visit If each visitor clicks, we'll never have to pay for another burrito in our lives. And neither will our grandchildren. Support Internet advertising today!

And of course, while we're prattling on about revenue, we sell T-shirts and a wide array of other merchandise. But, surely you already know this.

And here are some useful San Francisco taqueria maps. And here's a photo of an ojo taco. And here's a tossed-off note about Steve Garvey.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>


Please forward freely, yet responsibly.

Newsletter subscription addition/removal requests, questions, comments, and/or anecdotes always welcome:

Kindly direct news of taqueria openings, closures, or name-changes here:

Now for this month's hidden bonus track.

The Intestinal Apocalypse Monthly,, and The Great Mustache logo are brought to you by The Exploding Head Trick Publishing Co.

There you have it. We'll see you again at Slabby time in early January.

Yours, in delicious horchata,