Dining With Denise Neil

Is the new Chipotle queso any good? Here's a review

I tried the Chipotle queso at lunch.

Meh.

I’m guessing I’m one of the first people in Wichita to try it since it was just released nationwide today, Sept. 12. Though I was definitely not the only person at Chipotle over the lunch hour who visited just to try it. The guy in front of me in line at the Maple and Ridge restaurant was so excited, he was filming his trip through the line.

I opted for a large order of queso with chips, which cost $5.25. You also can get it on your burrito for $1.25, on the side for $2.05 or with chips for $3.35.

Much has been made of the fact that Chipotle had been resistant to adding queso to its menu despite customer demand because a gooey, cheesy dip doesn’t really gel with its “food with integrity” mission. But the burrito chain finally came up with an all-natural recipe that’s gluten-free and preservative-free with no added colors or flavors.

That’s the problem. Queso is one of those things that has to be unnatural to be good, in my opinion. It needs that thick, stick-to-your-teeth cheesefood creaminess, or it’s just not worth the bother – or the calories. I applaud Chipotle for trying to make a better cheese dip, but this one has a somewhat grainy texture, and the overwhelming flavor is cumin.

My husband – whose desire to eat his steak cooked medium and his aversion to most vegetables makes him an unqualified food reviewer – is nonetheless a queso expert. It’s one of his main food groups. And he liked the Chipotle queso. He thought the flavor and seasonings were good, and he didn’t mind the texture.

Looks like you’ll have to judge for yourself.

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