Yelp ratings: Mal Pan in Charlotte has best burritos in NC

Yelp named the burritos at Mal Pan the best in the state.

Yelp named the burritos at Mal Pan the best in the state.


A North Carolina restaurant is known for serving massive burritos — and they were just named the best in the state.

Taqueria Mal Pan in Charlotte was recognized as the state’s No. 1 place to get a burrito after the restaurant review website Yelp said it studied the places that customers craved the most from January 2019 to February 2022.

“We identified businesses in every state that served burritos, then ranked those spots using a number of factors including the total volume and ratings of reviews,” Yelp said in a March blog post.

The rankings were released ahead of April 7, which is National Burrito Day. But all year long, Yelp reviews show some Mal Pan customers can’t get enough of the restaurant’s offerings, including Mexican street corn, tacos and California-style burritos.

The burritos — which typically include french fries — also are served with steak and other toppings at Mal Pan. Yelp users said they were fans of the dish’s fresh-made tortilla and that the burritos were big enough to share, helping the restaurant earn more than four out of five stars.

The name Mal Pan — which means bad bread in Spanish — has a personal connection to one of the restaurant partners. It’s tied to a phrase from Andre Lomeli’s grandmother and “loosely translates to ‘when you’re hungry, there is no bad bread,’” he wrote on the business’ website.

The restaurant in the SouthPark area of Charlotte said it serves a “combination of both the modern and classic Mexican kitchen,” with influences “from Baja to Yucatan and everywhere in between.” Lomeli had a restaurant in California before he set his sights on starting one in the Carolinas.

“After doing some research, we really liked the city of Charlotte,” he told CharlotteFive in 2019. “We thought it was a great area to test this new concept.”

It’s not the first time a Charlotte eatery has received wide recognition.

Recently, restaurants in the city have been named among the nation’s top places to eat vegan food and enjoy a romantic meal, McClatchy News and CharlotteFive reported.

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Simone Jasper is a reporter covering breaking stories for The News & Observer and real-time news in the Carolinas.