First Burrito Served in San Francisco?


Plug1 was over on Belden Place and saw this sign on some establishment. He sent it over on the spot with the following accompanying text: “This can’t be right.”

Well, experts, what’s right?

Previously on Mission Mission:

Obama’s Election Means Carnitas Burrito For Breakfast

Burrito Justice For High Schoolers

Haiku Reviews of Mission District Taquerias

8 thoughts on “First Burrito Served in San Francisco?”

  1. Wikipedia, the best source of things “everybody knows” (be they correct or not), agrees with Josh.

    If the claims of the owner of “El Faro” are to believed, the first San Francisco burrito was sold September 26, 1961 to a group of San Francisco firefighters, using two 6-inch tortillas to play the role of what would later become the large single tortilla. The fact that he did not have — and had not previously considered the need for — larger tortillas suggests that the birth of the San Francisco burrito as we now know it probably did not come earlier than that time.

  2. My in-laws, who lived in the Mission in the 60s and 70s remember the first time they ever saw a burrito. It was at a market around 16th street near Guerrero & Valencia. The Market doesn’t exist anymore. The burritos were $1.25.

  3. Everyone here’s right. El Faro is kind of taking a liberty by posting that sign at its Kearny/Belden location, which makes it look as if the fateful event occurred on the edge of the Financial District rather than at 20th and Folsom. El Farito Market (kitty corner from El Faro Taqueria) just closed last year, or maybe earlier this year; reported several months ago that it’s supposed to become a sausage place in the near future.

  4. I doubt people would remember the exact date they served a “Mexican Food” that’s not really eaten in Mexico. It’s a good ploy to get a buzz around your restaurant though.

    I love Wikipedia and trust it for most subjects. Burritos are not one of them. The fact that nearly all important events on the Burrito Timeline entry take place in SF and not anywhere near the border hints towards the inaccuracy.

    It’s unlikely that folks who were chomping down on burritos before 9/26/61 would write a Wikipedia entry about it. Wikipedia’s source for El Faro being the first SF Super/burrito is a 1993 SF Weekly article. Not exactly an infoulable bible. The author probably just read the sign posted outside the restaurant.

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