Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Three Amigos vs Taco Bell

Taco Bell has recently been the center of controversy over what type of meat is in their tacos.  They are being sued, and the class action alleges that their taco filling contains only 36% beef.  But Taco Bell has fired back, stating their taco filling actually contains 88% beef. Despite this controversy, there is no question that the taco filling is a processed food and probably contains some ingredients you would not use at home if you made your own tacos. 

But, their tacos are cheap, costing only 99 cents for either the hard or soft taco.  The tacos include seasoned beef filling, shredded lettuce and cheddar cheese. Now, I have recently eaten a few times at Three Amigos, a Mexican restaurant in Stoneham.  Their tacos, which also include chopped tomatoes cost $2.89, nearly three times as much as Taco Bell.  Are they worth that much? 

Three Amigos is located in a small strip of stores off Main Street, and it is a small restaurant with maybe a dozen tables or so.  They are open for both lunch and dinner, and have an extensive menu of Mexican food including Tacos, Tostados, Quesadillas, Enchiladas, Burritos, Fajitas, Taco Salads and more.  Plus, they have a Gringo menu, with burgers, hot dogs, salads and wraps. It is a popular restaurant, and also does a good takeout business.

When you sit down, they give you a complimentary basket of tortilla chips with a choice of mild or hot salsa. you won't find that at Taco Bell.  I tried both the ground beef and chicken tacos, and feel that they contain roughly twice the amount of fillings as you get at Taco Bell. These are good-sized tacos, and the ingredients seem fresh.  The beef filling more closely resembles what you would make at home rather than what you find at Taco Bell. It seems like ground beef, not some type of beef paste, that they have mixed with seasoning. It is flavorful, and overall they make a very good taco. 

Thus, based on a better quantity and quality, I feel the tacos at Three Amigos are reasonably priced.  I would rather pay more there, than buy the cheaper tacos at Taco Bell. 

I have also tried the Ground Beef Burrito ($5.49) at Three Amigos, which consisted of an overly plump tortilla packed with fillings.  Again, the restaurant did not skimp and the burrito seemed very fresh and was quite tasty.  It too puts to shame the burritos from Taco Bell. 

For consumers, you need to determine for yourself whether you will choose food based on cost or quality.  Taco Bell may be cheaper, but the quality is commensurate with the price.  Pay a little more, and you can get better quality food. I'll opt for better quality.

Three Amigos on Urbanspoon


Rebel With a Fork said...

Any true foodie would go for the best! And while you might think you're saving some money - consider the medical costs down the road from eating the cheap garbage foods.

I love the best of both worlds, good food and good health.

You made me hungry.

Anonymous said...

Dude. DEAD ON. Good choice.