Downtown Bakery

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75 Solid

You don’t need much more than a ten-spot in your pocket for a satisfying bite at this no-frills cantina.

69 First Ave., New York, NY, 10003


Known For

The lowdown

One of the East Village’s longest-running burrito havens specializes in fantastically lumpy and misshapen beauties that are slicked with tomatillo purée, lacquered with faintly smoky guajillo salsa, or doused with sour cream. It’s a special place that doesn’t try to tip the scales of record-setting enormity, but it’s still possible to take a messy burrito filled with inky refried black beans and a hefty spoonful of crisp shredded steak, and make it into two meals. (Downtown Bakery’s breakfast-burrito lineup, it should be noted, does wonders with a humble mix of fried potatoes, eggs, and Jack cheese.) The poblano here, on the thin side, is likely the smokiest in the city, with just a hint of sweetness, a nice hit of spice, and the clobbering bitterness you’d expect from being smacked by a 4x4 of very dark chocolate. You can get it lots of ways: in a tamale, with carnitas; over enchiladas (filled with chicken, beef, pernil, veggies, or cheese); in a chicken taco or burrito; as a plato, over chicken with yellow rice, refried black beans, and corn tortillas; or even just as a side of straight sauce. The kitchen also puts its homemade flour tortilla to good use during brunch, offering it with chorizo and eggs, or — for some corn-on-corn action — chilaquiles.

What you need to know

Recommended DishesAnything with mole poblano.

DrinksNo Alcohol

Noise LevelCivilized