Some people may hate this, but like it or not, summer is drawing to a close. Another season passes, and the sunshine and katydids give way to fallen leaves and sweaters.
For us students, that means it’s back to the books in just a few short weeks. For me, it also means that my time writing for Nooga is coming to an end so I can go back to being a full-time student.
I couldn’t have asked for a better job these past few months, and I thank you all for reading Native Eyes this summer.
It’s sad to leave, but I’ve learned a lot, and thankfully, I still have time for one more article before my life begins to revolve around tests and papers again. This time, I’m writing about one of my favorite small restaurants in town—Mojo Burrito.
Located in the heart of St. Elmo, Mojo has been a favorite local hotspot for years now.
They wrap what are unquestionably some of the best burritos in town, and every other item on their Tex-Mex menu is delicious.
Unfortunately, I have a raging addiction to the most expensive item on the menu, the signature Mojo Burrito. This monster is composed of all the chicken, steak, cheese and other ingredients you care to pack into a 12-inch wrap.
After you walk down the Mojo assembly line with your server picking out your ingredients, the finished product is an enormous burrito that is similar in length and weight to a small baby.
Add on the chips and homemade salsa that come free with every entrée, and you’ve got a sizable meal.
If burritos aren’t really your thing, Mojo also offers some of the best nachos in town. Again, you can top these with anything your heart desires. Pair them with a craft beer, and you have a perfect meal to enjoy with friends in the waning summer.
The restaurant in St. Elmo—there are two others in Chattanooga—is decorated with all kinds of local art that is rotated fairly regularly.
Some of it can get a little weird at times, but it all adds to the character of the store.
It has all the trappings of a hip location with a staff that knows how to serve up a winning recipe. There’s always good music playing, and the atmosphere guarantees you’ll have a fun, relaxing dining experience you can’t get at many other restaurants in town.
Mojo can get a little cramped at peak hours, but never horribly so.
It’s a small restaurant to begin with, and the problem is only complicated by the arrangement of the toppings bar. Basically, you walk in the front door, and the start of the line is about three feet to your right.
If you come in with a large group of friends, you can expect to rub shoulders with each other at the front of the store a bit before a server can take care of you all.
Whether you are a college student or a parent with a half-dozen kiddos, Mojo Burrito is a great choice for your taste buds and your wallet.
The core menu is fantastic, but I also highly recommend checking out some of the daily specials they have. My personal favorites are the $1 tacos on Sunday, which are the perfect way to forget that Monday is coming in the morning.
Of course, the restaurant is very family-friendly, but if you’re looking for a night out with your friends, be sure to stop by and buy a beer with your burrito or nachos.
Stop by on a Sunday night, and I’ll talk your ear off in line about all of the enormous school projects I’m having to work on.
The final wrap-up
Like I’ve said a dozen times before, I consider myself privileged to have grown up in a city like Chattanooga.
There are too many good things going on in this town to count, and I only had the chance to write about a small sample of them this summer. Between the Blue Hole, the food bank and the aquarium, there’s a lot of life being lived in the Scenic City.
I’ve had the opportunity to grow up in the humming buzz of all that activity, and my job has been to tell you all about what I love most.
Thank you for listening to all my stories of romance, screwups and adventures this summer. All I ask is that you continue living in and loving this city like I have.
It’s a beautiful place.
Emmett Gienapp is a writer trying to make it through college in Chattanooga. You can usually find him bouldering around the city, catering to pay rent or reading Dostoevsky in public places to appear intellectual.
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