So we're only a few weeks away from McBurrito (I mean Chipotle) opening it's doors on the bottom floor of my building… but to hold me over, I discovered a burrito in the most unlikely of places. Europa Cafe. And you know what? It's not that bad.
After knocking Chipotle for it's lack of authenticity, I feel bad endorsing a burrito that a) comes from a place with Europa in the title, and b) specializes in salads and sandwiches. Clearly the "burrito bar" (another embarassing detail), would be a mere afterthought. If you have never been to Europa Cafe, it is another one of those chain deli type places that litter the city where you can make your own sandwiches, wraps, and salads, or choose from a ton of pre-made options. With the exception of Variety Cafe, I tend to steer clear of these places- but I was intrigued by the Burrito Bar.
What I got after the jump…
The menu is actually a little complex, so you have to pay attention so you don't get ripped off. First you choose your main ingredient… Vegetarian is $5.95, Chicken Adobo, Pork Carnitas or Spice Crusted Chicken are $6.50, and the Cuervo Lime Steak is $6.95. Included in that price you get two hot items (Black Beans, Rice, Refried Beans or Peppers and Onions), two cold items (Lettuce, Pico de Gallo, Jack Cheese, or Sour Cream), and then a choice of salsa or dressing. Guacamole is $1.50 extra, so don't just start pointing at things or you might end up with a $10.00 burrito. I'm a big fan of carnitas (as I mentioned in my Chipotle post), so I went with carnitas, rice, black beans, sour cream and cheese. They had a salsa verde which I chose as my "dressing".
All in all, it was surprisingly good. The carnitas was nice and roasted (not smothered in some over spiced sauce) and the rice- a key part of a good burrito, was surprisingly authentic considering the source. The rice I got was not on the menu, so i'm not sure if they always have it. All in all, I would recommend it. Not the best burrito I've ever had, but it wasn't nearly as bad as it could have been. Maybe that says more about expectations then anything…
Europa Cafe, 1177 Sixth Avenue, Corner of 46th, 212-575-7272
There are multiple locations… but I don't know which ones have Burrito Bars and which ones don't. If you know of others, please post as a comment. Burrito bar only open for lunch.