The residents of Birmingham have long cherished the perks that come with living in a foodie city, but there has been an unresolved burrito-sized hole in many of our hearts. Matt Seward and Tim Frazier, the masterminds behind Burritopunx, are here to end this travesty - and they are having a good time while doing it.
The concept has been in the works for years. The two had worked in various Birmingham establishments including The Barbecutioners and Bottletree Cafe under the legendary Tom Bagby, and had even been in a band called “BIGGIEVSTUPAC” together. They had always known they wanted to one day create a business of their own. Trips to Bandito Burrito Co. in Huntsville shined a glaring light on how serious the Birmingham burrito drought was, and the two began forming a plan to address this concern with a well-tested menu and green sauce galore.
The pain-staking research process really took hold during a trip to San Diego for Awesome Fest 2018. In between the joys of seeing some of their favorite bands and meeting friends made through internet connections, the adventurous pair made it their mission to try as many burritos as possible. Mission-style and cart-style burritos alike were carefully sampled, examined, and used as motivation.
Even though the vision started to take shape in 2018, it took the shaking of personal lives (and a global pandemic) in 2020 to see Burritopunx become a reality. The residents of Birmingham couldn’t eat out, but the need to eat burritos was still there. The guys got to work trying new concepts, and started offering different burrito and sauce recipes to the great taste-testers at Seasick Records and Birmingham Classic Cuts.
The menu is mostly vegan, besides cheese and one egg option that can be left out. This wasn’t initially a focus - but has solved yet another dilemma for Birmingham food lovers who are looking for more diverse dietary options. Jackfruit and TVP (textured vegetable protein) provide delicious vegan flavors that are hard to find in the Magic City. The Burritopunx crew has three incredible sauce options with absolutely zero mayonnaise, sour cream, or any animal-related products. The sauces aren’t just vegan, they are pretty dang tasty.
“We get a lot of compliments on the Green Fuzz because it’s very much like a California green sauce. We had a California native who just jumped up and down and said ‘This is the closest thing I’ve ever had to something from home’, and that was a huge heart-warming for me.” says Matt on the feedback.
It’s not only sauces and burritos named after the likes of Al Green, Birmingham legend Suaze, and the iconic music venue Saturn (where Matt and Tim have met many close friends), that Burritopunx is slinging to the public. On a recent Saturday, copies of the DIY punk magazine “Razorcake” were offered as well, and a spirit of loving and fighting for oppressed communities is just as essential to these business owners as the food they serve. While Matt and Tim are the front-facing duo, they are quick to mention that none of this would be possible without their website designer and “for all intents and purposes” the company’s CEO, Alicia Roden.
They’ve only been in business for a few weeks, but the Burritopunx approach of pre-ordering for weekend delivery or pick-up has yielded sold-out results every week - so you better act fast to ride this burrito wave! You can also support Tim, and Birmingham’s incredible music scene, by checking out the more punk side of his life by listening to “Me and My Knife” and “Qualifier”, where he plays drums and bass respectfully.
It’s safe to say the pair love this city, and those who make it so special. As Tim puts it, “I spent my 20s kind of loathing living here and then I spent my 30s embracing it, and it’s even better in my 40s now. I think that the future is bright, not just for Birmingham, but for us and our friends who have their own ventures going on.”
We are certainly thankful for this venture, and their dedication to helping the people of Birmingham “eat two burritos, drink a beer, and be happy.” Their parting message? Let love lead first always and don’t say you saw Green Day in Tom Bagby’s living room if you weren’t actually there!
***Cover image via Jaysen Michael***