cross street: Sansome
Map Visits: 2
Shrug: tortilla (7); meat (7); cheese (7); ingredient mix (7); size (6); beans (6)
Clang: vegetables (4)
Intangibility bonus: 1 (of 2)
For this business casual affair, we opted for Tacos San Buena's invitingly juicy, yet sometimes-gristly carne asada, a decision that set the tone for the rest of our lunch. Because for every laudable aspect of this embarrassingly slender burrito, there seemed to be an equally maddening one. All hot bites? OK. A disturbing dearth of vegetable content? Yup. Airtight construction and brilliant spice? Sure and sure. Austere whole pinto beans and an ordinary tortilla with an earthquake fault-sized ingrown chasm? Uh huh. Even the cheese was the portrait of seven-mustache shruggery: Kinda-sorta melted, but not all the way, while covering many areas of the burrito, but certainly not the whole thing. This burrito-shaped exercise in bafflement had single-mustache intangibility written all over it.
Shrug: meat (7); vegetables (7); sauciness (7); ingredient mix (7); beans (6); cheese (6)
Clang: no elements clanged
Intangibility bonus: 2 (of 2)
There were a few things to vigorously applaud, a few more to simply shrug at, and fortunately, nothing to start a major food fight over on our first visit to Tacos San Buena’s Market St.-adjacent truck. Our super burrito looked like a super burrito ought to look, and we’ll admit we had visions of nine-mustache alchemy when early foil-tearing revealed one of the more gorgeously grilled tortillas we’d seen downtown in some time — none more perfect, all the way down to its gentle flakiness. All kinds of onion — two kinds, anyway — anchored a capable veggie congregation sadly short on green roughage, save one stray stalk of cilantro; other areas of adequacy barreled in via well-slathered but internally parched pork, whole pinto beans that added little to the slabular experience, and a few pods of Jack cheese that weren’t as fully melted as they should have been. Nonetheless, both intangible goodness and spice ebbed less than they flowed, while some relatively harmless burstage on the penultimate bite spoiled a perfect rating there. But even with the alfresco dining, this burrito could have remained hotter.