A New York City teenager managed to get a year’s worth of free burritos thanks to the help of social media, Grub Street reports.
On Valentine’s Day, 17-year-old Ren Nakamura, a student at Beacon High School, shared a photo of himself eating at a Dos Toros, a Mexican restaurant with locations in New York, New Jersey and Chicago. Several hours later, the restaurant chain responded to Nakamura’s delight, according to the food blog.
The teenager then asked the restaurant how many likes he would need to get in order to receive free burritos for the rest of the year. Dos Toros said he would need at least 10,000 likes.
“I thought it was very achievable, so I just went for it,” he told Grub Street.
The next day, Nakamura posted himself standing outside of a Dos Toros in Manhattan’s Flatiron District, along with a conversation that he had had with a Dos Toros representative.
“@dostoros promised me free burritos for a year if this post gets 10,000 likes,” the teenager wrote. “U KNO THE F***KING DRILL … like and share!”
According to Grub Street, Nakamura’s post caught the attention of social media influencer Nicolas Heller, who, in turn, shared it with his followers via his Instagram story.
“I figured Dos Toros was betting against him hitting 10k likes, so I felt obligated to help him out,” Heller told the blog. “I also love the idea of community coming together to help a kid beat the odds and win a free year of burritos. If that’s not what social media is for, I don’t know what it is.”
In 29 hours, Nakamura’s post received 10,700 likes — some of which reportedly came from people in Germany and the Philippines, the high school student said.
“After I hit the 10,000 likes, I DMed [Dos Toros] and I was like, ‘Yo, what’s up, guys? I just got it, what are we doing now?'” he recalled. “They saw the message and they didn’t even respond, so I was a little worried that they weren’t gonna come through. But like, you know, that would’ve been pretty foul, I thought.”
The restaurant chain’s director of marketing, however, eventually reached out to the teenager and instead gave him a black card. With that card, Nakamura said he could get one steak burrito with guac — the restaurant’s most expensive item — every week for 52 weeks.
Naturally, the high school student’s newfound fame came with asks from friends who also wanted free burritos.
“People were asking me for them, asking me for a free burrito here and there — people that I knew but wasn’t really super-close with,” he said. “I never said no to anyone, but I kinda just laughed it off.”
In fact, Nakamura said that the requests reached a point where he decided to take his original Instagram post down. He also admitted that his appetite for burritos reached its limit after a period of time.
“I had a playoff basketball game … and we won, and like some of my friends after the game were like, ‘Yo, are you gonna go to Dos Toros to celebrate?’ he said. “And I was like, ‘No.’ I had been the last three days in a row.”
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