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Here’s America’s Favorite Mexican Restaurant. And It’s Not Taco Bell or Chipotle

America’s favorite Mexican restaurant has been revealed—but do you agree that its quesadillas, tacos, and burrito bowls are the best in the U.S.?
According to the 2017 Harris Poll EquiTrend, Moe’s Southwest Grill is the best Fast Casual Mexican Restaurant Brand of the Year, retaining the prestigious title for the second year in a row. Moe’s is followed by Baja Fresh Mexican Grill and Taco Bell.
Moe’s, which was founded in December 2000 in Atlanta, scored particularly highly in the quality and consideration categories, as well as among the millennial age group. “Moe’s has a unique tie to pop culture and knack for engaging customers that’s appealing to its core consumer,” said Joan Sinopoli, vice president of brand solutions at The Harris Poll, in a statement.
Former category leader Chipotle (CMG) did not do so well in this year’s poll, now ranking below the category average. As the Harris Poll statement explained, the U.S. chain “has yet to fully recover from its decline driven by issues with food-borne illness.” As Fortune stated in an article earlier this month, while the chain was once the envy of restaurant operators across the country, “the outbreak of foodborne illnesses that broke out coast to coast for five months in 2015 has permanently impaired the profitability of its business model.”
Other winners in the 2017 Harris Poll EquiTrend included Five Guys Burgers and Fries for Burger Restaurant Brand of the Year, The Cheesecake Factory for Casual Dining Restaurant Brand of the Year, Papa John’s Pizza for Pizza Chain Brand of the Year and Starbucks Coffee Shops (SBUX) for Coffee & Quick Service Restaurant Brand of the Year. View the full list here.