News

People Are Railing Against This Guy for His Weird Chipotle Order

The latest controversy to divide loyal Chipotle fans is neither a credit card breach, nor anything to do with its secret menu. No, this is a case of etiquette and food-service ethics, and it's being prosecuted right now across a divided Internet. The defendant: Josh Williams, a Napa Valley tech guy, and his loving family that just wanted Chipotle for dinner. The opposition: a rampaging Food Twitter horde calling Williams out for taking a photo and describing the action he took to feed his family. The charge: ordering a full order of Chipotle tacos with the ingredients separated.

"Am I weird?" he asked his followers in a tweet that has since gone viral. "Or brilliant?"

As Williams described to BuzzFeed, he asked the folks at his closest Chipotle for all the ingredients that typically go into the chain's signature tacos to be individually packaged. He did this out of practicality, he explains: His family lives about 45 minutes away from the nearest Chipotle and the chicken tacos that they ordered would have gone soggy and crappy and cold and fallen apart by the time he and his 4-year-old son brought them home to his wife.

Honestly, this is not a crazy situation to be in. Williams and his family live in Napa Valley, which is indeed a Chipotle desert. As many on Twitter pointed out, of course, it's also not the nicest thing to ask someone working in any food service job to do. For what it's worth, he also pointed out that in the area they live in, "everything closes at 5pm," meaning he and his son -- who were coming back from the movies -- wouldn't have had time to grab food elsewhere locally for a family dinner otherwise.

There's a lot going on here, of course. On the one hand, no one wants to piss off a server at Chipotle. Really. On the other hand, the guy's gotta feed his family and he's correct in wanting to do that in a way that doesn't result in a crappy mess of busted tacos. The Twitter reaction, which Williams seems to be relishing, given his recent tweets, appeared to recognize both arguments, while leaning more heavily on the position that neither he nor anyone else should absolutely ever do this.

Arguments for: Including, but not limited to, sympathy for a dad feeding his family, alternate solutions or riffs on the concept, and full-throated endorsements of the practice.

Arguments against: Including, but not limited to, concerns for the environmental implications of using all the extra plastic, getting spit in your food, or wasting the time of and/or pissing off food service workers generally.

For what it's worth, Williams seems to be taking all of this in stride though, buoyantly replying to his commenters and explaining the issue of having kids at home and promising that he would tip the next time he did this. He even spent the last day or so retweeting the #ChipotleGate tweets he's seen and making jokes about how even Harry Potter scribe JK Rowling liked a tweet calling him out on it. He also pointed out that the employees at the Chipotle were "surprisingly chill about it." 

At the end of it all, Williams listed off the things he learned from the experience:

h/t BuzzFeed

Sign up here for our daily Thrillist email and subscribe here for our YouTube channel to get your fix of the best in food/drink/fun.

Eric Vilas-Boas is a writer and editor at Thrillist. Follow him @e_vb_.