Local Vibes

Local Vibes

Local Vibes

I will never say no to a burrito. Steak, ground beef, chicken, pork, and even breakfast burritos are a real treat for me. The large tortilla is a blank canvas, and the person in the kitchen or behind the counter making my burrito is the artist.

Chain restaurants like Chipotle, have you, the customer, directing the art of making your burrito, dictating to the artist exactly which items will go into your handheld meal. Rice, beans, cheese, cilantro…etc. It’s all about the teamwork.

I’ve been to Chipotle a couple of times and it wasn’t bad. However, I do prefer the little mom & pop Mexican places when it comes to authentic Mexican food. I find these little family owned Mexican restaurants charming and very welcoming, and the food is almost always on point depending where you go.

Abuela, mama, and other family members are the powerful forces in the kitchen creating incredible dishes from recipes that go back several generations. Old school recipes are the heart & soul of any culture’s food.

You can get a burrito in just about every town, city, and state here in America. The word “Burrito” means Little Donkey in Spanish. The history of the burrito has many tales told by many people.

The story that seems to come up most, is about a man named, Juan Mendez. According to: La Vista Restaurant’s website, Juan Mendez used to sell tacos at a street stand in the Bella Vista neighborhood of Ciudad Juárez during the Mexican Revolution i.e., 1910–1921, while using a donkey as a transport for himself and his food.

To keep the food warm, he used to wrap it in a large homemade flour tortillas underneath a tiny tablecloth. As the food grew in popularity, burrito, the name was eventually adopted as the name for large tacos.

Burritos have been adopted by many cultures and have morphed into many forms, but the Mexican burrito will always be king in my world.

Let’s travel through Ocean County To find places who do burritos best.

  • El Familiar - 1246 NJ-166, Toms River, NJ 08753

    A great family owned place serving Mexican & Columbian food. I like this place a lot, very welcoming. The food is as authentic as it gets and the service is excellent. I’ve been attended to by more than just our server, they all help each other here. The Pork Tinga burrito looks very tempting. I can tell you the Chimichangas and steak are delicious.

    El Familiar Restaurant in Toms River NJ - El Familiar Restaurant

    Welcome to El Familiar Restaurant. We offer the most delicious Colombian and Mexican Food in Toms River New Jersey. Come and enjoy our amazing menu

  • La Cazuela de Doña Mary - 815 Hooper Ave, Toms River, NJ 08753

    Talk about a hidden gem. I only found this place a few years ago as I swung around the jug handle on Route 37 East to head down Hooper Avenue towards the mall. I finally stopped in to grab some Tacos Al Pastor and a few other things. Such a quaint colorful place, and the people were very friendly. The word delicious doesn’t begin to cover it. You can tell these recipes were handed down from generation to generation.

  • Taqueria La Michoacana - 26 Union Ave, Lakehurst, NJ 08733

    Another family owned business that serves incredible authentic Mexican food. The Quesabirria is hands down the most ordered dish, but please try the burritos and the chimichangas here. Huge flavorful bundles of joy.

    Taqueria La Michoacana sign


  • El Mexico Lindo - 2063 NJ-88, Brick Township, NJ 08724

    Brick, New Jersey has quite a few authentic places for tasty real Mexican food, and this place is high on the list.

    Mexico Lindo - Brick, NJ

    Delivery & Pickup Options - 106 reviews and 55 photos of MEXICO LINDO "I can't explain how excited my whole family is to have El Mexico Lindo back! The old restaurant was the Friday night staple for our family, as well as many of our friends' families.


  • Salsa Salsa - 1901 Ocean Ave N, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742

    A nice little mom & pop business frequented not only by the locals, but the seasonal visitors as well. That’s who tipped me off. Reasonably priced authentic Mexican food served with a smile. Killer burritos from vegetarian to the special burrito, you can’t go wrong when you hit up this little restaurant.

  • Spicy Cantina - 500 Boardwalk, Seaside Heights, NJ 08751

    I’ve been coming here for years! In fact, my co-workers and I have powered down a few margaritas and several burritos over the years. Haven’t been here since last Summer, but my last experience was a great one. The burritos and chimichangas are delicious and very filling. None of this would be complete without their killer guacamole.

  • Ortega's Mexican Bakery & Restaurant - 1822 Hooper Ave, Toms River, NJ 08753

    I found this place while shopping at Lenny’s Silverton Market and discovered their incredible bakery. They make fresh bread every day! A varied selection of cake flavors and true artistry are the focus of their cakes which can be preordered for special occasions. Flavor and presentation are also the focus of their savory dishes. They load up the burritos with your choice of protein (mine would be the Al Pastor or the chorizo) plenty of pepper jack cheese, onions, peppers, beans, rice…etc. and a side of the green sauce. You gotta try this place.

  • Mi Mexico Lindo - 213 NJ-37 UNIT 6, Toms River, NJ 08753

    Right next door to one of my favorite breakfast places, C&G’s Country Cafe. Although I haven’t eaten here before, I can’t give you my personal opinion. This recommendation is based on what I’ve heard in the past. The owner is also the chef and pays attention to the little details that matter while creating the dishes served at this authentic restaurant,

  • Taco-tastic III - 344 US-9, Lanoka Harbor, NJ 08734

    I was looking for a new nail place and the one in this shopping center was highly recommended, as was Taco-Tastic 3.  I was told that the food here was excellent by the woman who recommended the nail place. She recommended the shrimp burrito bowl or any of the tacos on the menu. There are 2 Taco-Tastic locations closer to where I live, but it shouldn’t make a difference as long as the food is consistent. Hey, I’d drive a good distance for a great nail place and a great burrito.

  • El Tepeyac - 511 NJ-72, Manahawkin, NJ 08050

    I have been informed they are under new ownership and that the quality of the food has not suffered one bit. If the new owners are as friendly as the original owners, then you should check out this place on your way to LBI. They often have some unusual Mexican dishes on their specialty menu, and the regular menu staples are some of the best in the area.

  • La Jarochita - : 449 E Bay Ave, Manahawkin, NJ 08050

    Another colorful festive place for good Mexican food. The minute you pull into the parking lot, you automatically get the feeling this place is going to be good. It’s so bright and cheerful, and the food is plentiful and loaded with flavor. You get a good-sized burrito with all the fixins at a very reasonable price. They also serve a nice breakfast and are active in the community doing good things.

    La Jarochita - Manahawkin, NJ

    LA JAROCHITA, 449 E Bay Ave, Manahawkin, NJ 08050, 60 Photos, Mon - 7:00 am - 10:00 pm, Tue - 7:00 am - 10:00 pm, Wed - 7:00 am - 10:00 pm, Thu - 7:00 am - 10:00 pm, Fri - 7:00 am - 10:00 pm, Sat - 7:00 am - 10:00 pm, Sun - 7:00 am - 10:00 pm




  • La Catrina - 17 Lacey Rd, Forked River, NJ 08731

    You can tell these folks work hard. They’re open from 10am to 10 pm, 7 days a week. I got sidetracked looking at the breakfast menu because I noticed Tres Leches Pancakes. I’d probably order that for dessert after eating my Asada burrito. I usually go for the either the Al Pastor or the Marisco (seafood), but I love a good steak burrito too.

    La Catrina Mexican Restaurant in Forked River NJ

    La Catrina Restaurant Forked River NJ. Serving authentic Mexican food. We use frehs ingredients to make our delicious dishes.


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