Miguel’s Jr. is a Mexican restaurant in Costa Mesa and Orange. Think of it as the TK Burger of Riverside County -- not necessarily the biggest regional chain, but beloved nevertheless. Its menu is straightforward: hard-shell tacos, nachos, quesadillas, and simple combo plates featuring such Cal-Mex favorites as shredded beef and chile verde. But the reason to visit Miguel’s Jr. is the Inland Empire-style burritos, exemplars of the region’s love for its Mexican food. Although the squat Miguel’s Jr. Original is the namesake and delicious, the most iconic is the Garbage Burrito, which is the working-class brother of Chipotle-style burritos -- think a bunch of ingredients inside a powdery flour tortilla stretched to its physical capacity.
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It's so, so easy to trash our cousins in the Inland Empire, but we owe our love of Mexican food to them. San Bernardino gave us Glenn Bell of Taco Bell fame; Del Taco's first location was in Yermo; Duane R. Roberts invented the froz...