Chefs at La Escondida slather authentic Mexican dishes, such as pork milanesa and enchiladas, in three signature salsas: Red Bear, Black Mamba, and Diablo. Colorful South American decorations adorn the restaurant, enlivening dining experiences and events such as Sunday-afternoon karaoke. A patio with red-clothed tables hosts patrons for alfresco meals, and a flat-screen TV broadcasts sports events and miming competitions subtitled in Spanish.
Off the Hook Mexican Seafood Grill turns to the ocean for inspiration, substituting salsa for saltwater to create dishes that evoke the Mexican coastline. The seaside breeze that dances across the outdoor patio sets the mood for plates of grilled rockfish, golden-fried prawns, and tacos stuffed with tender lobster and salmon. Similarly, seafood burritos replace the traditional steak and chicken with grilled shrimp and the traditional tortilla with a fried navigational chart.
Recognized by the Ventura County Star for trading hands between five generations since 1936, Familia Diaz has evolved with changing tastes to dish out classic yet modern Mexican fare. Within the historic eatery, family recipes and in-house soothsayers dictate the construction of signature tacos, burritos, fajitas, and other south-of-the-border staples. Exposed bricks, emerald vines, and exotic accents including a colorful Mexican cart feed eyes and recall the pastoral architecture in Mexico. A lounge nestled under a semicircular window, lined with mosaic tiles, sets a tropical scene for sipping signature cocktails and sampling a colossal list of tequilas. In the evenings, the glossy wooden bar blazes to life like a birthday cake for a giant sequoia under the glow of a mounted TV.
Qdoba's burrito baristas handcraft a catering menu of Mexican-inspired cuisine, customizable with a panoply of fresh ingredients for a taco, nacho, or burrito bar. Qdoba's culinary crafters craft succulent fillings for burritos, tacos, nachos, and quesadillas, including protein-packing choices, such as slow-roasted pulled pork, adobo-marinated grilled steak or chicken, and spiced shredded or ground beef, with vegetarian options also available. Taste the gooey flavor accents of the signature queso sauce, a three-cheese blend with roasted poblanos, tomatoes, and jalapeños, the pinto or black beans simmered in cumin and onion, or the creamy, hand-smashed guacamole that's ideal for filling up Queen Elizabeth's diamond-studded guacamole chalice. Tortilla chips with salsa bar and desserts complete each catered event, and customers can opt for burrito-boxed lunches and any add-ons.
Margarita Villa's upstairs dining room showcases Mexican cuisine against expansive views of the harbor and colorful floor-to-ceiling murals portraying seaside and country life. The full bar's 18 different flavors of signature margaritas complement traditional mexican burritos and specialty plates adorned with local seafood. On select nights, diners gather beneath the high ceilings with exposed wooden beams or under cozy heat lamps on the patio to enjoy live music. The building's Spanish-tiled exterior boasts a tall tower that resembles an Old World villa or the windmill that Don Quixote used to revolutionize alternative energy in the 16th century.
El Taco Llama crafts authentic, quick-serve Mexican fare that folds traditional and exotic meats into tortillas, gorditas, and hard taco shells. Proteins from chicken to barbecue pork to beef tongue fill burritos, sopes, or quesadillas. Orders of nachos supreme can come topped with shredded beef or ham, and special platters of five tacos populate shelled empires with fish, beef cheek, or breaded meat. The tortas plate serves up rice, beans, and tortillas, and combination plates mix and match menu items to make tiny tostado-taco or gordita-taco hybrids that can be used to power fuel-efficient dune buggies.