We generally try to avoid large chains. Very broadly speaking, the food isn’t usually that awesome and the experience results in us giving our money to some sort of mega-corporation that has a ton of policies we find objectionable. The exceptions to the rule? New England based pizzeria Bertucci’s, which makes truly solid margherita pizzas, and nationwide burrito chain Chipotle. Chipotle’s burritos have often satiated our craving when we find ourself in a Mexican-food wasteland (read: much of New York City) and if you have any self-control (we don’t), they can easily comprise two meals. We also love the company’s focus on sustainable foods (the company uses rBGH-free sour cream, an ever-increasing amount of organic produce, and meat from green companies like Niman Ranch).
Recently, we learned of a reason to like Chipotle even more when the Washington Post reported that the chain has started using pork from Shenandoah Valley based Polyface Farms in its Charlottesville, VA location. Polyface is, of course, run by Joel Salatin, the man immortalized in Michael Pollan’s book The Omnivore’s Dilemma. Although Chipotle has faced numerous challenges, including the need to install a new kitchen in Charlottesville, over the seventeen months its taken to bring Polyface products to the restaurant, it hasn’t given up. Here’s hoping that Chipotle takes this focus on local farms nationwide!
Bertucci’s Brick Oven Pizzeria [Official Site]
Chipotle [Official Site]
In Trial Run, Chipotle Heads to the Farm [Washington Post]
Polyface Farms [Official Site]
The Omnivore’s Dilemma [Michael Pollan]
[Photo: Carnitas burrito, Flickr: skeptict]