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Viva La Revolución: Chipotle adds brown rice to menu

August 1, 2011 | Chad Conine | Latest News
Viva La Revolución: Chipotle adds brown rice to menu
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Some days I wonder what I will write in this space. Mondays especially.

In that regard, today began like any other day. I sipped some coffee at Starbucks and did a little morning reading and put off thinking about it. And then I drove to Chipotle and today's blog was sitting there waiting for me in a tray right at the beginning of the line.

Trumpets sounded. A nearly audible voice declared "Here, my son, is today's blog. Chipotle has added brown rice to its menu."

This might not seem revolutionary, but let me assure you that it is. For 10 years, those of us who love and frequent Chipotle have been walking through a burrito line that offered white rice, a choice of black or pinto beans, peppers and onions, chicken, beef, barbacoa, carnitas, tomato or corn salsa, green salsa, red-hot salsa, sour cream, cheese, lettuce and guacamole ("Guacamole is extra. Ok?").

By the second or third time a person eats a Chipotle burrito or tacos or a bowl, he or she has mastered the decisions involved. Black or pinto beans? What kind of salsa will mix best with chicken? Am I man or woman enough to take on the red salsa? Is it worth an extra $1.50 to have guacamole? For me the answers are black, red, yes and yes. Today, though, for the first time an additional decision needed to be made and made quickly. First thing, white or brown rice?

Gasp. Oh the uncertainty. Chipotle began serving brown rice at 11 a.m. on Monday morning. I wonder how many people broke down crying while attempting to make the life-altering choice of white or brown rice.

As for myself, I was relatively fearless. I chose brown. It was about the same.

There are a lot of things I don't understand about the universe. But the things that truly mystify me are actually pretty pedestrian. I can't fathom why there is not a Freebirds World Burrito in Waco. And when it comes to Chipotle's recent addition, I can't understand why they decided to offer a slightly different type of rice. The two things, in this blogger's opinion, that separate Chipotle from Freebirds are Mexican rice and the availability of queso.

So, Chipotle, why not queso? If you offered a blend of queso as fresh and tasty as your other ingredients, surely you could charge an extra handful of change like you do for guacamole and customers would still insist on drizzling their burritos with it.

A quick Google of the words "Chipotle brown rice" revealed that brown rice is supposed to be healthier and more environmentally friendly. Isn't that how they're trying to sell everything these days? I guess I'll take their word for it and feel even better about my choice of brown rice today.

BTW, this blog is healthier and more environmentally friendly.