Chino Locos

Photo:  Dean Seguin

Photo: Dean Seguin


The burritos at Chino Locos have long been a sticking point for fans of tortilla-wrapped foods. This local gem takes an unusual approach to the standard burrito. It's distinguishing list of available fillers includes the likes of edamame beans, shitake mushrooms and chow mein noodles instead of conventional rice. And there's the rub. Burrito traditionalists balk at the idea of bringing anything but classic ingredients into the fold. That's fine, you can still have your rice. But the distinct texture and taste of introducing chow mein into the burrito experience has seduced a legion of devoted customers and is part of the reason Chino Locos ends up on top of best-of lists year after year.

Marrying asian flavours with a Tex Mex staple is the creation of two childhood friends who started Chino Locos. They call them "Tasty Good Burritos", and the menu staples include "Sweeeeet" with slow roasted pork and "Pollo Loco" with shredded chicken tinga. There's also a rotating feature for the burrito afficionado — jerk chicken, general tao and bbq boneless ribs are a few of the specials.  

The OG location of Chino Locos at Queen and Greenwood is about as no-nonsense a takeout counter as you can get. Place your order, get in, get out and enjoy. Not that you'd want to spend much time in the tight spot. There's always a handful of hungry customers hanging about. The place is crammed with boxes of supplies and pop bottles, there's a fridge covered in souvenirs and global banknotes and a couple of old school black-and-white martial arts handbooks. A Where's Waldo? poster hangs below the counter. Quirky, yes, but its level of oddity also lends to its charm.

Must-have: Called "Da Finest", this burrito comes packed with sauteed white fish, guacamole, tomatoes, edamame beans, red onions, black beans, green peppers, cilantro, cheese, sour cream and chipotle sauce and costs only $6.99.