Named for the historical hacienda in Mexico once owned by Don Miguel Hidalgo—the father of Mexican independence—and known for its artisanal tequila, Corralejo Mexican Flair proffers south-of-the-border eats and tequila-based libations. Chefs in the kitchens of all three locations whip up traditional dishes, hand-mashing fresh avocados for batches of rich guacamole and flash-frying sun-dried-tomato tortillas to serve as a base for chimichangas. Having perfected the science of mixology during rigorous training sessions, Corralejo’s expert bartenders sling tequila-based beverages down the bar along trajectories they've carefully diagrammed on cocktail napkins.
Cheeky rouses a sizzling flavor fiesta with its fresh menu of made-daily Mexican favorites, signature salsas, and vast drink directory. Diners can sink tortilla chips into one of Cheeky's five vibrant salsas or wield crispy plantain wedges when chomping through an authentic shrimp-and-calamari ceviche ($9) to the rhythm of the Mexican national anthem. Paw-ready sandwiches include a crispy torta asada ($9), and custom-built tacos can be crafted from signature crab-cake fritters, steak, shrimp, and fish ($3). Grumbling bellies are hushed by piping entree plates, such as a shrimp-and-spinach quesadilla ($10) or a poblano pepper stuffed with melted mixed cheese and topped with a cherry tomato sauce ($8+).
El Porton Mexican Restaurant has sated cravings for fresh, healthy ingredients for more than two decades, serving up authentic Mexican lunches and dinners that complement the bar’s array of 85 tequilas. Amid golden walls that evoke a warm afternoon in a tropical cantina, guests kick-start stomachs by watching chefs craft lime-infused guacamole tableside. From the kitchen, beef and shrimp fajitas sizzle, wafting aromas of onion and bell pepper that transform into cartoon hands to lure in noses. Warm days open El Porton's patio, where sunshine heightens the flavors of make-your-own combo platters spread with chile rellenos, tostadas, and burritos, as well as USDA steaks aged a minimum of 21 days. Tequila shots arrive in flights or individually, and customizable margaritas in flavors such as mango and classic lime pour forth from salt-rimmed glasses to accentuate entrees and fuel conversations about Mexico's hidden agave rivers.
Keso Mexican Grill rouses the palates of Johns Creek and its surrounding communities with sizzling Mexican dishes that pack bold flavors. Inside, a contemporary vibe seeps from the restaurant’s stone walls. Standing guard as the dining room’s centerpiece, a large stone Olmec head watches over meals with far more authority than the mustached scarecrow that also tried out for the job. As a group of friends crisscrosses forks over shared tapas at one table, a waiter delivers a still-steaming steak to another. Along the dark marble bar, glasses of wine, beer, and tequila clink beneath the flickering glow of flat-screen TVs, which are perched above rows of bottles behind the bar.
At Rio Nuevo Mexican Cantina, culinary maestros spice, sear, and toss savory ingredients into sizzling platters of upscale Mexican cuisine. Rio Nuevo crafts specialty mole infused with authentic Mexican notes, such as the mole Don Jose, a mélange of 32 spices including tangy chili ancho and rich chocolate. Diners can savor game from land and sea infused with Mexican flavors in the alambre de camarones, plump shrimp skewers grilled with a cloak of garlic-lime-agave-caper sauce, or the filete azteca, tender sirloin affectionately nurtured by melted cheese, grilled cactus, and commitment-ready salsas. Extensive lunch selections allay taste-bud escapes with piping half-pound fajitas and hearty handheld tortas. Attentive servers usher entrees and refreshing drinks to guests amid the restaurant's well-appointed interior, which sparkles with glowing sconces, hanging lights, and crisp, conversationally adept tablecloths.