Chipotle Putting Mi Nidito Out of Business (And Their $5 Burrito Isn’t Helping)

Mi Nidito
For years a number of Midtown Lunchers have talked about how much they like Mi Nidito, the sit down Mexican restaurant on 8th Ave. btw 51+52nd. And for years I’ve been avoiding it. Partly because their lunch specials were over $10, but mostly because I couldn’t imagine the place was that good. I’d rather get $2.50 tongue tacos at the El Rey del Sabor cart, than a plate of chicken or beef tacos with refried beans and rice for $11. That’s the kind of Mexican food I’m into.

Mi Nidito

Well, last month I discovered that Mi Nidito is actually owned by the same guy who owns Bombay Grill, home of the infamous Indian pizza. Points for or against? I can’t decide. Not surprisingly the place is getting killed since Chipotle moved in next door, so to respond they recently lowered some of lunch specials to $9.95, and even introduced a take out burrito option for $5. Five bucks!? Well, that I’ve got to try.

Mi Nidito

I had pretty low expectations for the “burrito”, and it certainly lived down to them. I knew for $5 it was going to be small, and probably not have sour cream (and certainly not guacamole)- but I at least expected the rice and beans to be *in* the burrito. For $5 it’s a good amount of food, and the shredded chicken was flavorful, but it’s not anything I would refer to as a “burrito” (and certainly not a good burrito.)

Mi Nidito

It’s not really fair to judge a place on a $5 take out lunch special, and now that some of the real lunch specials are $10 maybe I’ll go again. But on first impression I could see it being a better happy hour spot, than a Midtown Lunch. And based on the $5 burrito, I’d probably chose Chipotle (and that’s saying a lot for me.)

Fans of Mi Nidito should know that the owner is trying to get rid of the lease (which he can’t afford), in which case he would move the Mexican food from Mi Nidito into Bombay Eats around the corner… making it an Indian Buffet/Pizza/Mexican restaurant. Hilariously disgusting hybrid, or just another great Midtown Lunch option? Only time will tell… (but I’m leaning towards the former.) Anybody had anything really good at Mi Nidito? Let us know in the comments.

Mi Nidito, 852 8th Ave (btw. 51+52nd), 212-265-0022


  • I like the sound of an Indian Buffet/Pizza/Mexican mashup.

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    We already like Indian burritos (kati rolls), perhaps they can make some chicken tikka masala tacos? or maybe some kati roll enchiladas?

  • when i used to work around there, i thought it was funny that there was a mexican take out place right next to chipotle. doesn’t look like that place will be missed.

  • @steve – well, Mi Nidito was there long before Chipotle.

  • Man, any post that praises chipotle saddens me and my digestive tract. That stuff just isn’t food. It’s the one place I’ve consistently had trouble digesting my meal. I’ve never been sick from a streetcart, but chipotle on the other hand wasn’t fun…

  • Oh my, Zach even suggesting Chipotle over anything – this is not a good sign.

  • So neither place serves Mexican food, but perhaps Mi Nidito actually employs Mexicans.. It’s a mediocrity Sophie’s choice.

  • mmm. cilantro rice

  • i want taco pizza please

  • So, I ordered delivery from Mi Nidito and the woman taking my order clearly had an Indian accent. The politically correct voice in me says that a chef/restaurant owner need not be a member of the culture represented on the menu for that menu to offer authentic food. But, in reality, I really do feel more confident about “ethnic” food if it is prepared by members of that culture. There’s a perfectly acceptable French bistro in my neighborhood where the kitchen is filled with staff who have never spoken a word of French. Similarly, there’s a pasta joint nearby, again, perfectly acceptable, where the food is clearly prepared by fine young Spanish-speaking chefs.
    Yet, I find myself preferring French food in a restaurant where the chef is named Jacques or Pierre or whatever and pasta joints where the chef is named Marco or Silvio. Am I reasonable or racist?

  • The food delivered by Mi Nidito bore no resemblance to any Mexican food I have ever eaten.

  • Unless you’ve never eaten mexican food outside of the south/southwest, then that’s hard to believe. Mi Nidito is no better/worse than every other generic NYC mexican restaurant. The first time I had guac was at Mi Nidito (and I liked it), though it took the pitcher of margaritas my friend and I shared for me to get over the guacaphobia.

  • welcome to the guac side, Adam… aka HEAVEN!

  • In fact, here in Philly, we just got a food truck that serves Chicken Tikka Masala Tacos… and they are delicious (though my favorite are the Southern BBQ Pork):

    Better hope that becomes a reality there!

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    Thanks MWinston, I hope so too. At least I have something to share with my friend in Philly now.

  • Chicken Tikka Masala is about as Indian as it is Mexican.

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    The best Mexican food I ever had. Very delicious fresh Guacamole and salsa. Very nice enchilada and much more.

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