Salsa Fresca, the new build-your-own Mexican grill on Broadway St., has not been around for long, but it has already won a place in our hearts.

Yes, this is partially due to the fact that it is open late and within drunk-walking distance from Toad’s, but there are also many more reasons why Salsa Fresca might be kicking Chipotle and Tomatillo to the curb.

1. It is Open Till 3 am on Thursday to Saturday

salsa fresca

Photo by Wendy Sun

Starving after trekking around New Haven all night from frat to frat? Don’t feel like the commonplace Bacon-Egg-and-Cheese at G-Heav? Fulfill your 2 am burrito fantasies by heading over to Salsa Fresca.

Though they still have not learned they should extend their late night hours to Wednesday night, too (sigh), they’re getting there.

2. Their Meat is All “Humanely Raised”

salsa fresca

Photo by Wendy Sun

Sure, no one really knows what that means. All we know is that it sounds good, and makes us feel a little better about chowing down on their Ancho Ground Beef, Chipotle BBQ Beef and all-natural Achiote Pulled Pork and Grilled Chicken. Speaking of which…HELLO! TWO BEEF OPTIONS!

3. Vegetables Galore

Salsa Fresca also offers two vegetable main dish options to top your burrito bowl in lieu of (or in addition to) their meats: a roasted vegetable medley and their “poblano rajas.”

The poblano rajas are arguably the most delicious mix of grilled peppers and onions available at any fast Mexican restaurant around (take this as a call to action, Chipotle Fajitas Vegetables).

You can also add onions, tomatoes, cilantro, jalapeño or avocado to any meal (though the avocado will cost you a little extra). These delicious veggie options make Salsa Fresca a great place for vegetarians, even if they don’t have Sofritas.

4. The Salsa Selection is on Fire

salsa fresca

Photo by Wendy Sun

Salsa Fresca definitely boasts a wider array of salsas than Chipotle and Tomatillo. I topped my bowl with their delicious Corn and Black Bean salsa and the “Salsa Fresca” (a classic pico de gallo), but they also have plenty of other options, ranging from mild to very, VERY hot.

Warning: the “Salsa Fresca” salsa was a little sweet, so if you’re looking for a spicier sauce, steer clear. If none of their homemade salsas pique your interest, or you regret getting a mild salsa (rightfully so), their extensive bottled hot sauce selection by the soda machine is equally satisfying.

5. They Have Healthier Carb Options

salsa fresca

Photo by Wendy Sun

If you’re going for a more wholesome burrito, opt for the whole wheat tortilla instead of the white flour tortilla, or the brown rice instead of the Mexican rice to add some more whole grains to your lunch or dinner.

6. …And Also Really Fun, Unhealthy Salad Options


Dress your salad with Citrus Chipotle BBQ Sauce, Buffalo Sauce, Chipotle Aioli, or Citrus Lime Vinaigrette – all made in house. Dressing not enough? Pour on sour cream, queso, or guacamole, too. You can even get your salad IN A CRISPY TACO BOWL. ‘Nuff said.

7. The Staff is the Best

salsa fresca

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The workers at Salsa Fresca are always happy to help, even when you ask them for an extra scoop of chips or a cup for “water” (read: lemonade stealthily taken from their extensive drink machine). And what’s better than a bomb burrito and a sweet smile? Absolutely nothing.