Downtown Bakery's Breakfast Burritos. [Photographs: Scarlett Lindeman]

Back in 1983, a DJ at an independently run Los Angeles radio station, KXLU 88.9FM, declared December 19th as "Burrito Day in LA," a day to celebrate the spicy, meat-filled, foil-wrapped tubes that the citizens were so fond of. Two years later, the then-mayor Tom Bradley officially proclaimed December 19th as a city-wide holiday, so inhaling bean and cheese burritos became not just lunchtime, but civic duty.

New York does not have an official burrito day, nor the widespread and century-long relationship with burritos like the West coast, but we're slowly gaining traction. Do not let our burrito demographics, or lack thereof, hang your head in shame! Let's start our own Burrito Day! Today! December 18th! One day ahead of LA because the sun rises in the East, doesn't it? Find the good ones, buy one for a friend, and let's start our own tradition. Here are three that make for good celebrating.

Downtown Bakery's Breakfast Burritos

This kind of early morning burrito ($5 to $7) is a rare breed in this city: a breakfast of softly scrambled eggs, refried black beans, and cheese folded into a stretchy flour tortilla, so you can ditch the fork. Read more »

Downtown Bakery

69 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10003 (map)

Fast and Fresh Burrito Deli's Chorizo Burrito


The neon oil that leaks from the foil-wrapped package is a good sign: the chorizo burritos ($6.50), bulging with fine crumbles of heavily spiced sausage and drifts of rice are barely encased by the springy edible wrapping. Every component is just moist enough. Read more »

Fast and Fresh Burrito Deli

84 Hoyt Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (map)

La Espiguita's Cecina Burrito


There are good impulses at this tiny Astoria taqueria. The burritos are so huge they make Mission-style look anemic. $6 gets you a gigantic specimen, wrapped in foil, stuffed with fluffy orange rice, a shmear of beans, the perfect swatch of sour cream, and seared chippings of salted beef, cecina. Hold the lettuce!

La Espiguita

32-44 31st Street, Astoria, NY 11106 (map)

About the author: Scarlett Lindeman wears many hats: a food-writer, recipe editor of Diner Journal, a food/arts quarterly, and a doctoral student of sociology. E-mail her at scarlett.lindeman@gmail.com.


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