The dining room at El Mariachi Mexican Restaurant is a kaleidoscope of colors, its vibrant orange and red walls a fitting backdrop for its multicolored margaritas and flavorful Mexican dishes. Sizzling dishes crackle as they emerge from the kitchen, with strokes of red and green salsas sweeping across burritos, tacos, fajitas, and an abundance of traditional meat, seafood, and vegetable specialties. Thirty combo meals group complementary offerings—such as a grouping of chili relleno, enchilada, and chalupa—that fight for throat space with towering margaritas and mugs of beer. Leafy vines dangle from arched doorways, and art pieces speckle the walls, from ornamental suns to impressionist pieces made entirely from hot sauces of different colors.
The flavors found in El Chico’s enchiladas and fajitas are a tasty testament to what the Mexican eatery does best: cultivating a menu that bustles with authentic Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes. Fajitas provide a savory meal for two, with flour tortillas embracing veggies and chicken, beef, or a combination of the two with the gusto of a bear giving a bear hug. Or opt to reward tongues with enchiladas, which accentuate a variety of proteins with slick coats of cheese and sauce. The spicy beef of Mama’s Favorite enchiladas plays nicely with the fiery nature of chili con carne, and the Top Shelf fajita enchiladas capture rare glimpses of grilled fajita steak and ranchera sauce frolicking on the plate. Avocado enchiladas are also on hand for sets of vegetarian cravings.
Che's Mexican Food's cocina fires up a menu's worth of classic dishes for groups of two or four. From the roster of starters, a trio of flautas helps trounce appetites or break in new napkins, and an avalanche of ingredients smothers the nachos supreme. Entrees include burrito platillos constructed in small or large sizes according to hunger levels. Tacos and quesadillas arrive mouthside enveloped in a choice of flour or corn tortillas, and sizzling fajitas embrace a choice of chicken, beef, or a combination of meats. A selection of fountain drinks helps wash down memorable meals or accidentally ingested spoons.
The spirited tunes of live mariachi music occasionally float through the dining room at Sierra Fria, fostering a fitting atmosphere for the menu of authentic Mexican cuisine. Chefs embellish traditional recipes with fresh toppings of avocado and pico de gallo to beget an extensive roster of classic fare, such as burritos, enchiladas, and fajitas. They construct an ample array of seafood dishes with shrimp, salmon, and tilapia alongside steak and chicken specialties blanketed in a rainbow of spicy sauces, while bartenders mix fruity margaritas and dole out domestic and imported brews. At the West Tiverton Way location, exposed-brick walls neighbor colorful murals of matadors and pastoral scenes which spill onto booths, tabletops, and plates' dreams.
Every day at all of El Nopal’s locations, cooks whip up fresh batches of salsa, chips, and beans. The sauces and sides accent chicken or beef chimichangas, handmade tamales, and nachos smothered in cheese. All El Nopal locations offer complimentary chips and salsa with every meal, and some locations have outdoor seating areas. Performances by live bands at select locations serve as a pleasant distraction from meals, unlike a judge with highfalutin ideas about not eating in court.
Chef Ramiro Gandaras literally attached his name to Ramiro’s Cantina, and he figuratively posts his family recipes all over the walls of his restaurant's kitchen. Referencing these recipes, his team dishes up a string of Mexican cuisine staples, such as burritos, tacos, and quesadillas, alongside a few Tex-Mex hybrids, such as guacamole burgers, enchilada casseroles, and homemade chili. In the cantina—which is Spanish for “proof that gravity exists”—bartenders pour tequila into margaritas and draft beer into tall glasses.