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Without Dos Toros, I wouldn’t be able to survive in New York City, so it’s with deep regret that I confess I will no longer be frequenting one of its downtown locations.

Dos Toros Union Square

As a California native, I struggled to come to terms with the east coast’s unimpressive Mexican cuisine when I moved to D.C. two years ago. Chipotle is a decent alternative, but unhealthy when consumed too often and on a much lower playing field. My relocation to New York proved worthwhile in part thanks to Dos Toros, which was founded by fellow bay area folks who wanted quality Mexican food in the city. There are several Dos Toros locations in Manhattan, one of which is by my new apartment uptown, and I’m going there from now often and ditching the Union Square spot.

Here it is from the inside:

As much as I love the servers there, the seating area is inadequate — and the business side is all too aware of this. Not like they care, though. I actually tweeted a complaint about it a while ago and the company replied that they have no intention of expanding their Union Square space, which is constantly overflowing with people: “unfortunately not in the cards, on the bright side, warm weather = sitting in the park!”

Well yeah, when there’s not that whole Occupy Union Square thing going on. Sure the park works for spring and summer, but what about in frigid weather? New York is freezing at least six months a year, and during that time, everyone is left out cold, literally. It’s true that Dos Toros is an in demand, highly regarded restaurant, and I suppose they have a right to make customers fight over seats as such, but that’s not what Californians are all about. We’re nice, friendly, happy people who don’t believe in making the eating experience stressful, even in New York City.

So from now on, I’m sticking to the Upper East Side Dos Toros, which is never crowded and right around the corner from my apartment. I’ll miss the hustle and bustle of downtown, but at least I still  get to have good burritos away from the west coast.