Down an alleyway connecting Main Street and a parking lot lies Bueno y Sano, home of the over-stuffed burrito. No doubt Bueno's immense popularity among students arises from the quick menu of Cal-Mex staples with a high calories-to-cents ratio. But if you're looking for a little "good and healthy," we think you're on the wrong track. It's more like "huge, filling, and underseasoned." Across the board, the tastes just fall flat. And if it's a healthful diet you're after, you probably know that a massive carbohydrate binge isn't exactly all the rage in the nutrition literature these days.
The burritos are the main event here: rice, beans, cheese, lettuce, tomato, a bit of pico de gallo, more rice, and more beans are all rolled along with a feature ingredient into one daunting flour tortilla, necessitating an attack with fork and knife. Unfortunately, despite the nicely textured tortilla and abundance of ingredients, none of them stand out. The chick pea and red curry burrito, for example, is disappointingly blah; any prospective zing is extinguished by the vast quantity of beans and absolutely tasteless rice. The Salvadoran burrito, with favor-free grilled zucchini and red pepper, meets the same boring fate. A barbecued chicken burrito is one of the only things with any taste, but its chicken chunks are nonetheless unimpressive. "Vegetable" burritos have nothing but the rice, beans, lettuce, and other fixins, with no main filling. Tacos, meanwhile, are nothing but miniature burritos. Simpler, crispily-pressed quesadillas are the best choice. Good hot sauce and handy packets of salt are both essential additions to anything. Bueno y Sano could benefit from a good salsa bar, but in the meantime you'll have to fork up 50 cents for chips and 25 cents more for salsa; we doubt that a few extra quarters in Bueno's coffers could possibly justify the insulting impact of that policy on its customers.
Bueno's interior is very Pioneer-Valley casual, with warm orange walls decked out with pastoral scenes (picture the Little Prince in rural
Mexico) and vegetable portraits (genetically modified, judging from the size). The tables are close together, but the place feels earthy and comfortable, like a familiar kitchen. No complaints there. Perhaps, in addition to cheap, filling eats, the resulting vi be has earned Bueno its reliable popularity and long waits. We doubt it's the taste of the food.