I swore I wouldn't taint the hallowed pages of Burritophile with subpar burritos, even if they are the only burritos within a 5000 mile radius on the wrong side of the Pacific Ocean. I never thought to write about Desperado's in Surabaya, or Cafe Iguana in Singapore, or the Saddle Cantina in Beijing. I don't care how desperate you are for Mexican food -- the only barely passable Tex-Mex I've found in Asia does NOT satisfy a deep al-pastor-with-five-alarm-salsa-at-three-a.m.-in-the-Mission craving.
But, after hearing a college friend (who came of age with eating Chano's on Figuroa at 3 a.m.) who now lives in Shanghai rave about Agave Cantina, I was willing to be open-minded and give it a try.
I tested out the chicken mole, while my dining companion went with an al pastor. I think the fact that I was amazed the menu differentiated beyond "beef, chicken, or pork" is testament to how starved we are for any kind of sophistication with respect to our slabs.
The meat was juicy and tender, the rice was flavorful, the beans moist and didn't overwhelm. I skipped the guac and sour cream, but layered on the "medium" and "hot" salsas, which did not disappoint. Integration was a little bit of a problem, and my burrito didn't come snugly wrapped in foil, but at least the tortilla was soft, fluffy, and grilled warm. Burrito itch, scratched.
On the pricey side, at RMB 60 (about USD 9) each, but well worth it for the rare treat of a decent burrito in the Far East.