Steve Ells is a personal hero of mine. Since reading Fast Food Nation a few years ago I've nearly quit fast food, except for in a few rare moments of weakness when McDonalds fries are irresistible. And then I found Chipolte.
Chipolte operates under the slogan "Food With Integrity". They primarily use locally and organically grown produce as well as meat from naturally fed-livestock. This allows for the convenience of fast food without the guilt and concern that what you're eating might not actually be food. Plus you can get guacamole and a fountain coke with every meal. Sold!
Ironically, Chipolte is owned now, in part, by the McDonalds corporation. While I struggle sometimes that a chain that is somehow "anti-fast food" in nature is merely a cog in the industry kingpin, I have hopes that Chipolte is the new generation of fast food, and that other chains will follow in foot.
With that optimism in mind, I am thankful for Chipolte, the countless barbacoa tacos I have consumed, and days like today, when I can get lunch there without waiting in a 20 minute long line to do so. It's the little wins, sometimes...