Best Restaurant in Virginia: El Charrito Caminante
OK, El Charrito isn't really a restaurant. It's more of a hole in the wall with a couple counters. Sometimes these are the places that serve the best food also. I will first say that I have a strong weakness for Mexican food. It is my favorite by far, which is a clear result of me growing up in Southern California. Since I moved here, I have not been able to find anything close to acceptable Mexican food (save one exception that will discussed later). That is until I finally tried a place I've driven by a billion times on Washington Blvd., in between Pentagon City and Clarendon. El Charrito's burritos aren't huge bricks like you'd find at (ugh) Chipotle, but rather normal sized and filled with a selection of meats ranging from tongue to steak to chicken to GOAT. The goat was delicious, and the addition of radish and cilantro adds a certain zing. After this introduction to the mundo de El Charrito, I returned the next day to try a torta, a Mexican sandwich. This too was delicious. The bread was a tad bit sweet, the steak very meaty, and it all combined into a delicious meal. I won't go as far as to say that El Charrito is better than the taco shops in my home town, but it is by far the best I've had here.
The other gem I found is good, but not El Charrito good. It's called Orale and is located in a strip center on Route 1 out by Fort Belvoir. It is nearly impossible to find as it has no clear signage, but their barbacoa burrito was quite delicious. They also have tripe and cabeza as a meat choice for burritos/tacos, but I was not feeling quite up to the adventure. This place is good, it's just so far away.
I am waiting to try Taqueria Distrito Federal that I've read about on DCist. Has anyone tried that place, and if so, what should I order there when I make the trek out to Columbia Heights? Any other recommendations for quality Mexican food in the area? As an aside, Tex-Mex is not Mexican food. It is a terrible, terrible reproduction invented by retarded Texans. I can't wait til Bush is out of office, the Texans move back to their cattle farms, and these Tex-Mex places that have popped up go away.
Also, take a look here for some in depth burrito coverage.