Wednesday, May 2, 2012

La Bonita vs La Sirenita

Like the cliche goes: there are 2 kinds of people in the world- those who like La Bonita and those who like La Sirenita. These two restaurants, located between 28th and 29th ave on Alberta Street, have brought about much debate over the years. One is a seedy greasy spoon, the other is a hip hangout. Let's see how they compare in my book!

La Sirenita
La Bonita from La Sirenita (although all I can see is the man in the pink shirt)

 The Battle of the Chile Relleno Burritos

La Sirenita vs La Bonita
Upon first glance, La Bonita's burrito (on the right) appears more appetizing. The tortilla is flakier, and those little toasted circles are aesthetically appealing. However, it is loosely wrapped, which could lead to a potential burrito explosion! La Sirenita's, though not as visually pleasing, feels solid and well wrapped.

La Sirenita                                                                  
Contents: chile relleno, refried beans, rice, tomatoes, onion, cilantro

Price: $4.00                            

Sides: red and green sauce

A typical relleno burrito, not too eggy, lots of cheese, a little greasy. The pico was tasty, but not very prevalent. Very dense. The chile ran the length of the burrito, which is much appreciated. What could be worse than not getting to the chile until you're halfway through, or running out of it at the end? The tortilla was lacking, and a little on the sticky side. It wasn't super flavorful, and needed salsa to keep it interesting. Good price for what you receive though. 

 La Bonita

Contents: chile relleno, refried beans, rice, lettuce, cilantro, onion

Price: $5.95

Sides: red and green sauce

It started off well. The chile was stuffed with white cheese, perhaps cojita, which was creamy and delicate. The beans were also pretty tasty. As I kept on chomping, however, lettuce began taking over, until nearly every bite was a mouthful of iceberg. This isn't acceptable for a burrito pushing the $6 mark, or any burrito for that matter. In the end, it wasn't very gratifying and needed lots of hot sauce to keep it alive as well.

Ratings (outta 5):

La Sirenita's Burrito: 2.5 stars

La Bonita's Burrito: 2 stars

La Sirenita pulled out ahead! The cheaper price and lack of lettuce is what gave their burrito an extra half star. Ho hum, but neither of these burritos rocked my world. Both were totally uninspiring. I know there will always be die-hard fans of both places, and perhaps I just ordered the wrong burritos. As for now, I'm left feeling empty and destitute. I suppose I'll just settle down in my little hole in the world and wait for the next burrito craving to hit.

Perhaps I should open my own taqueria, and call it: "The Beautiful Little Mermaid" (La Sirenita Bonita). It will be a magical place where everyone just gets along.


  1. Just goes to show ya, don't go up north for burritos. I'm sure there are good ones, but all the real tasty ones are down south. There could be a euphemism there that I am not seeing...

  2. Sirenita above Bonita? You may be a burrito junkie but you're no burrito critic.

    1. I agree... you must have hit a bad day or are comparing the wrong burritos

  3. My first line was that there are two kinds of people in this world... The burrito eating experience is rather subjective, and it's OK if you enjoy iceberg lettuce wrapped in a tortilla, but I do not.

  4. not sure this blog is still up but....
    unfortunately for you the BEST burrito place is gone now!
    La Cruda
    The burritos were about 10 inches long and almost 4 inches in diameter.
    The tofu burritos were made with marinaded (in orange/mango juice, chipotle, and cilantro) and grilled.
    Their meat burritos were the best in portland.
    Chili Relleno? an 11 on the scale of one to ten.