FORK IN THE ROAD: NOTO Burrito

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- Over the years, the North Topeka Arts District has blossomed into an area full of unique shops and the only self-described "dive" burrito joint in Topeka.

Patty Tilton remembers North Topeka before it became the vibrant arts district it is today.

She said, "NOTO rocks these days. It used to be empty, vacant, boarded up sometimes, windows broken and nothing."

NOTO Burrito owner, Jenny Torrence said, "This was a different part of town that people weren't aware of, or perhaps they had misconceptions of and now it's such a vibrant thriving community."

The change happened several years ago when businesses like NOTO Burrito opened.

Torrence said, "When I started NOTO Burrito, it was truly because we didn't have food down here. It was just a need for something different. I love to travel and every destination city, when you look at a major tourism area, there's always a dive burrito joint."

She said it's not your typical Mexican food though.

"I would call it a white girl gourmet burrito joint I mean it truly is, so we do have tofu. We have a sweet on jenny salsa. We have a strawberry jalapeno salsa, so things are a little outside the box thinking. It's not your typical burrito you'd see other places," Torrence said.

Which is exactly what customers say they love about it.

Tilton said, "You get to taste a flavor of someone who created this business, who conceived of it, and put their heart and soul into it."

On the wall as you walk in, there's even a sign that let's customers know everyone is welcome.

"I don't care what your religion is, what your belief is, what color you are, what size you are, you're welcome in my walls and we will love you and accept you as you come."

Torrence also sells shirts at NOTO Burrito that encourage Topeka pride.

"I think sometimes people forget how spectacular we are and all the amazing parts that make up Topeka," she said, "All of our little colorful bits make this beautiful city, so you have to take each one of us to make us what we are and we're a spectacular capital city."

NOTO Burrito is located at 822 North Kansas Avenue.

They are open 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Closed on Sunday and Monday.

NOTO Burrito also has daily specials, including Taco Tuesday and Taco Burger Thursday.