1905 Glenn Park Drive, Champaign
Ahh, La Bamba. Hands down my favorite burritos anywhere in the world. Well, I haven’t been to too many places in “the world,” but this place is still my favorite.
La Bamba was opened in Campustown, in the main level of Skylight apartments on 5th and Green Street in the late 1980s. The space was small, and was mostly carry-out, and after a few years they expanded their space and added a bunch more seating. They were a staple of light-night “after the bars close” food, and for good reason; there’s not much better than a great big burrito to fill your stomach after a night of drinking.
During this time they expanded to other college campuses in the Midwest, including Wisconsin, Kentucky, Indiana, and a few other state schools in Illinois. Later they moved their campus location to a building on Sixth Street a block north of Green, and also opened a new location off Mattis Avenue in west Champaign.
They closed their location on campus several years back, and now their only location in town is the place on Glenn Park Drive.
So the food… They are mostly known for their “burritos as big as your head,” which come in mini, regular, and super sizes. In addition to burritos they have loaded nachos, tortas, and soft tacos. In addition to steak and chicken, they also offer chorizo, barbecued pork, and ground beef as options.
My favorite is a super burrito with steak and chorizo, without beans. They have several flavors of salsa, and I like to mix the “regular” salsa (their most popular by far) with the much spicier chipotle-style salsa. Betsy loves their Mexican rice, which can be ordered as a side item, or added to a burrito.
They are open for lunch and still stay open until “after the bars close.” If you’re a fan of good burritos, and haven’t tried La Bamba, you’re missing out. Tell Antonio I said hello.