Philadelphia has its cheesesteaks, New York its pastrami sandwiches and Texas its barbecue. In San Francisco, the super burrito is not only the premier bargain food, but truly a local phenomenon. The city is home to well over 150 taquerias – informal Mexican restaurants specializing in tacos, quesadillas, tortas and, of course, burritos – and locals are often heard debating their favourites effusively. A San Francisco super burrito stuffs a jumbo tortilla with any number of grilled or barbecued meats, Spanish rice, beans (choices include whole pinto, black or refried), melted cheese, pico de gallo (a splashy mix of diced tomato, onion, jalapeño and coriander), guacamole or slices of avocado, a splatter of salsa and even sour cream. And with its emphasis on vegetables, grains and legumes, the burrito also easily lends itself to vegetarian and vegan variants. Most San Francisco taquerias wrap their goods in aluminum foil for easy handling, as most locals eat burritos by hand. Expect to pay $6–10 for a super burrito and to not have much of an appetite for hours afterward. Forego the utensils, order a Mexican beer or non-alcoholic agua fresca (fruit drink) with your foiled meal, and you’ll fit right in.

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