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CACTUS MEXICAN FOOD #2 (6.25)

Posted in Hollywood, Koreatown by burritowizard on June 6, 2011

Cactus Mexican Food #2 Exterior

4370 Beverly Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90004

(323) 662-0759

MEASUREMENTS: 9″ circumference – 7″ length (standard size)

Veggie Burrito = $4.94 w/o cheese; or $6.04 w/ cheese

Their rice is made with chicken broth.  Half mashed stewed vegetarian pinto beans.

Cactus Mexican Food #2 (#1 is on Vine in Hollywood) has been on the decline for some time now.  Their once legendary salsa bar has continually disappointed over the last year or so.  But this once great pride of L.A. establishment has truly hit a new low with their recent tacky cosmetic remodel (photos will be posted soon; current photos are of old decor), resulting in their tauntingly new high prices.  I think if Marie Antoinette was alive, she would let us eat the cheese for free, but they started charging $1.00 extra for generic shredded cheese.  Salsas fluctuate from day-to-day in color, body, spice and taste.  The chipotle is their best (dark brown) Andy Cone guitarist from Monorchid seriously almost lost his life trying to get more of this salsa on one fabled day back in their glory days; the spicy verde (green) reminds me of the great serrano pepper salsa from Burrito Brothers in Washington, D.C.; the red seems to fluctuate between a mild arbol, a very spicy habanero, and sometimes just a strait sriracha.  They don’t put out the salsa bar until after lunch (time seems to vary day-to-day), but you can ask for all salsas on the side. Three parking spots on-site.  I really want to love this place, but management seems to constantly find a way to mess it up.


 

cactus-salsa

Sauces pictured above (from left to right) chipotle, Thai hot sauce (red), spicey verde, arbol (red)


 

 

VALUE: Used to be one of the best values in town.


WIZARD’S SCORE: 6.25


4370 Beverly Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90004

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TOMATILLO 6.75

Posted in Gringo, Koreatown by burritowizard on October 19, 2010

3435 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90010

(213) 388-9636

Vegetarian Burrito: $6.24

Measurements: 9″ circumference; 7″ length (but they’ll hook you up with a monster if you ask nicely)

Today is a special day in American History: I walk into Tomatillo in Koreatown.  The very first Tomatillo.  I feel the energy, this is going to be big…  Like the hot band with a record contract before their first practice, Tomatillo is destined for greatness.  The underpaid staff greets me with big smiles, and jovial attitudes, knowing that they are a part of the very first one…

You have to compare Tomatillo to Chipotle, I’ll use this analogy: Chipotle is Mario from Super Mario Brothers, and Tomatillo is Luigi; but with fresh quality ingredients not seen at Chipotle since the pre-1998-corporate-expansion of the franchise.

Decent traditional red and green salsas with fresh chunks of tomato, cilantro and of course tomatillo.

Value: Standard Issue

WIZARD’S SCORE: 6.75

MARIELA’S TACO (5)

Posted in Koreatown by burritowizard on February 17, 2009

Marielas Exterior

3662 W 3rd Street Los Angeles, CA 90020

Measurements: 9” circumference, 7” length (standard size)

Vegetarian Burrito: $5.41 after tax

This is one of my best friend’s favorite spot, so I frequent this spot far more often than I would choose to myself.  You’ll pay a vegetarian tax, the meat burritos are almost a dollar cheaper.  But, the vegetarian burrito is decent: rice (chicken stock), re-fried beans (lard), lettuce, onions, cheese, avocado, and sour cream.  Red and green hot sauce (with no heat): salsas are below average.  No salsa bar, you have to ask for them.  Also, they have a cheaper bean, rice and cheese option.  There is something redeeming in the experience here ,Je ne sais quoi.

marielas-burrito

Value: Pricey for what it is

WIZARD’S SCORE: 5

Koreatown Vegetarian Burrito