Como Esta Taqueria's culinary technicians tinker with zesty and flavorful ingredients to create the hearty dishes that adorn their menu of authentic Mexican cuisine. Warm up appetites with a plate of nachos ($5.25), topped with beans, cheese, and salsa, or silence grumbling stomachs before they learn to curse with the wild fish tacos ($3.85) with cabbage and chipotle sauce. Meatless munching begins with the Tofu Ranchero burrito ($5.75), where tofu snuggles together with rice, beans, and salsa in a warm tortilla sleeping bag, or vegetarian tacos ($3.75) brimming with guacamole, beans, cheese, and salsa. Como Esta Taqueria's low-carb tortillas bring a mere 5 grams of carbohydrates to mouths, letting customers save room for loading up cheeks with walnuts or loaves of bread.
The red-brick counter inside Los Altos Taqueria serves as the hub of activity, the place where guests order anything from tacos to tamales, watch chefs stuff tortillas with the requested meats, and eat the traditional Mexican dishes at one of the stools lined along the counter’s perimeter. A selection of nine meats, including fried pork, beef tongue, and barbecue chicken, fill burritos, rest atop nachos, and snuggle in enchiladas. The popular quesadilla suiza hides meat, cheese, and salsa between two tortillas, whereas fajitas boast a smorgasbord of rice, beans, guacamole, sour cream, grilled veggies, and either chicken or beef. Meals are complemented with housemade beverages such as margaritas and micheladas—a Mexican beer prepared with lime juice and assorted sauces and spices.
La Victoria Taqueria's signature orange sauce spins vibrantly hued, piquant accents across time-tested Mexican fare including burritos, tacos, and enchiladas. Amid spice-laden clouds of steam, chefs forge the sauce from a secret family recipe and sell it by the bottle due to its popularity and ability to escape paper bags. The eatery's two-tone booths brim with the sounds of gleefully chattering silverware, and catering services launch supplies to distant parties and meetings.
When it first opened in 1979, La Salsa Fresh Mexican Grill was a simple taqueria in Los Angeles. Its open kitchen gave patrons a front-row seat to watch chefs transform fresh ingredients into bold, memorable Mexican dishes. Today, the original concept has evolved into a booming franchise, but each location works on the same principle: add a modern twist to classic Mexican food. Chefs continue to work in an open-kitchen environment where they concoct seven types of homemade salsas—laced with ingredients such as fire-roasted roma tomatoes, cilantro and garlic, and even mango—to complement carne asada tacos, los cabos shrimp burritos, and hefty bowls packed with chicken, fire-roasted veggies, and plenty of cheese. The kitchen crew also assembles large breakfasts of eggs and chorizo as well as huevos rancheros for early risers and paperboys who demand a tip in the form of eggs.
Meals from across Mexico have filled Estrellita Restaurant's menu since 1958. Veracruz-style tilapia fillets, topped with an herb-laced tomato sauce, join Vallarta-style tostadas, whose crispy corn tortillas don chicken, guacamole, salsa fresca, and sour cream. Chicken also marinates in Oaxacan spices or simmers in house-made mole sauce, whose intricate recipe includes more than 38 ingredients. Behind the bar, hand-squeezed lime and lemon juices flavor margaritas garnished with salt and slices of lime. For dessert, the kitchen whips up flan from a family recipe passed down by osmosis.
The tortillas at Nikko’s Mexican Grill are the primary ingredient in most dishes, holding together the fillings of fish tacos, barbeque chicken burritos, and shrimp enchiladas. So, since these tortillas play such a central role, the owners decided not to simply rely on one variety to do all of the work. Instead, they stock whole-grain tortillas in classic wheat, tomato, or spinach flavors, helping customers tame the spiciness of red-chile-soaked wet burritos or enhance the fresh flavors of cactus tacos. Most of the house’s dishes come with rice and beans, and can be paired with jiggling slices of the house-made flan.
Since 1980, the Ramirez family has tapped into the flavors of its native Jalisco, a region in central Mexico, to fill the plates at La Hacienda. They banned lard from their kitchen and stocked it with lean meats to give each dish a heart-healthy edge. Regional specialties, such as meatball soup, share tables with steaks, fajitas, and enchiladas doused in completely vegetarian sauces. The restaurant is intimate, housing fewer than 10 tables and booths and no bleachers. Colorful papel picado banners brighten the space, which features walls are covered in eclectic Mexican artwork.