An Australian burrito restaurant opens today in Cambridge

The company's tagline is “Mexican with a mission.”

Zambrero.
Zambrero. –Brian Samuels

Oz-Mex comes to Harvard Square Tuesday and, with it, free burritos.

Australian-owned, Mexican casual restaurant chain Zambrero will celebrate its grand opening in Harvard Square Tuesday with a burrito giveaway for the first 1,000 customers, beginning at 11 a.m.

Free food is one thing, but given the plethora of fast-casual restaurants in the historic square, including many Mexican-themed ones — Qdoba, Felipe’s, and Chipotle Mexican Grill — should Cantabrigians care about this new spot?

Well, it seems Zambrero cares. The restaurant company — whose tagline is “Mexican with a mission” — partners with the U.S.-based international hunger relief agency Rise Against Hunger for a Plate 4 Plate initiative. For every burrito or bowl purchased, a meal is donated to someone in need. According to a press release, Zambrero has provided more than 20 million meals to disadvantaged communities across Africa, Asia, and the Americas. Its stated goal is to reach a donation of one billion meals through Plate 4 Plate by 2025.

Zambrero. —Brian Samuels
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Founded in Australia in 2005 by Scottish-born entrepreneur and medical doctor Dr. Sam Prince, the Harvard Square store is taking over Boston-bred burrito chain Boloco’s spot on Mount Auburn Street. Another Zambrero branch is opening simultaneously in Warwick, Rhode Island — the two locations are currently the company’s only spots in the U.S.

Zambrero’s menu sticks with familiar items like burritos, quesadillas, tacos, and nachos, using U.S.-sourced meats, all slow-cooked for up to 18 hours for tenderness and taste. Guacamole and the Zambrero’s signature “IQ Salsa” are made in-house. Like Zambrero’s PowerBowl, a plant protein, superfood-packed, whole grain salad bowl, the IQ Salsa includes nutrient-dense amaranth and spiralina.

Zambrero, 71 Mount Auburn St., Cambridge;  zambrero.com

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