Most of the country is familiar with Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. (NYSE:CMG), the fast-growing burrito roller that has taken the fast-casual scene by storm. There are now more than 1,500 locations of the chain that's famous for its quick-moving queues and "Food With Integrity" mantra. However, even the most diehard fan -- I'm talking to you, Mr. Carnitas Bowl with sour cream on the side -- doesn't know everything about the company.
Let's dive into a few obvious and not so obvious facts about the company.
1. Chipotle is not owned by McDonald's It's true that Chipotle was once owned by McDonald's Corporation (NYSE:MCD). The burger giant had a majority stake in the Colorado-based company, just as it also once controlled Boston Market. However, McDonald's divested of Chipotle when it went public in 2006.
Then again, you probably knew that you didn't have to ask to supersize your chicken burrito. It's pretty big already.
2. Chipotle uses nearly 100,000 avocados per day Guacamole may not seem like one of Chipotle's most popular ingredients. It's the one item on the assembly line that costs extra. However, there are apparently a lot of people willing to pay a premium for the mashed and spiced-up avocados. Chipotle goes through an average of 97,000 pounds of avocados in a single day.
Making the guacamole isn't easy. Chipotle goes through 70 avocados in making a single batch.
3. The menu is bigger than you think Eyeing the Chipotle menu isn't exactly overwhelming. There aren't many items available. The real variations come in how you doll up your initial choice along the assembly line of toppings and fillings.
However, there are plenty of items that you can order that aren't on the menu. The most popular off-menu item is a quesadilla. Without flinching, a Chipotle employee will whip out a burrito tortilla, fill half of it with cheese and your protein of choice, fold it, and heat it up in a tortilla press. You can also order a kid's meal, which typically consists of a small cheese quesadilla and a side of rice.
If you're daring, you can even see if the employee actually knows how to make a quesarito. The fabled "secret menu" entree is a burrito wrapped in a cheese quesadilla.