El Gordo Restaurante's chefs plate a menu of traditional burritos, enchiladas, and shrimp washed down by a chilly wave of more than a dozen fruity margaritas. Patrons fire dance with the flaming cheese nibbler ($5.95) and then turn up the heat with hearty chorizo burritos ($6.50). Shrimp arrive tableside in a variety of styles—from ranchero to breaded—to team up with garlic or dried jalapeño sauce ($12.95). The smell of chicken or beef enchiladas smothered in mole ($10.25) and skirt steak resting atop rice and beans ($14.25) fills the air as diners knock back frosty mango or guava margaritas ($5.50). For extra spirited splendor, El Gordo Restaurante’s bar doles out more than a dozen distinct tequilas, plus Tecate beer and advice on how to teach a new dog old tricks, such as how to confuse a T. rex.
Brightly painted walls, vivid paintings of Mexican life, and flavorful margaritas lend Las Palmas' numerous locations a relaxed, distinctly "fiesta" vibe. As guests slowly unwind with friends, family, or Twister champions over ice-cold Mexican beers and cocktails, the chefs prepare fajitas, enchiladas, and tacos alongside plates of charbroiled meats and seafood. They also whip up vegetarian-friendly options, such as the signature guacamole and enchiladas banana, which they stuff with fried bananas and smother in mole sauce and melted cheese.
Situated in an unassuming neighborhood storefront, De Mucho Gusto populates its menu of snacks and heaping platters with authentically Mexican proteins including carne asada, octopus, chorizo, and tilapia. A house specialty, bistec ranchero ($8.95) soaks up a spicy, tangy sauce before belly-flopping into flames and charbroiling. Rice, beans, and tortillas accompany all dinner platters for DIY taco-making or makeshift games of table frisbee. Glistening nuggets of fried pork inhabit a burrito de carnitas ($5.75), one of a dozen fillings that can also stuff tacos, gorditas, or sopes and, unlike many taquerias that force weekday diners to make do with packing peanuts soaked in gravy, pozole fills bowls every day of the week with tender pork and hominy ($6.65). Seafood dishes mix with land denizens in combinations such as garlic-sauced shrimp and steak ($10.35).
Every morning, the dough masters at Aracely's Bakery rise before dawn to craft house-made cupcakes, pastries, and sandwiches to bejewel their display cases. Confectionary artists transform dreams into fondant-covered reality by crafting custom cakes for birthdays, baby showers, and Eat a Portrait of Your Boss day. Meanwhile, traditional Mexican recipes lend sweetness to cakes and spice to 11 kinds of sandwiches, whose ingredients include avocado, chihuahua cheese, and secret sauce, and pack flavor into handheld meals.