I think of Freebirds as a Chipotle on steroids. Same concept, same type of food, but more of it in a hyped up setting. Going through the line, customers have their choice of tortilla flavors, rices, beans, salsas and a wider variety of add-ons to their tacos, burritos or salads than at Chipotle. There’s also a DIY salsa bar for those who really want to soup up their meal. Want a frozen margarita or beer? While Chipotle does serve beer, Freebirds entices diners to hang around after scarfing down a burrito or plowing through an order of chips and salsa. In addition to the margarita machine, large screen TVs dot the dining room and bar area for those who want to watch their favorite team play.
The quality of food is similar at both Freebirds and Chipotle. They each make an effort to serve hormone-free, grass-fed beef and free-range chicken; Freebirds gives you a choice of white or dark meat chicken. I would say the chicken is better at Chipotle, though the steak may be more tender at Freebirds.
There’s a Freebirds in Mission, one in Lee’s Summit and a third just opened in Westport, in the old Chili’s space. Give one of them a try and tell me whether you think this upstart is going to give Chipotle a run for its money!