Mexican culture permeates every aspect of 3 Margaritas, from its namesake cocktail and south-of-the-border fare to a colorful interior packed with festive touches. Scarlet hues smolder on walls like fire-engulfed strawberry orchards, working in aesthetic harmony with vibrant wooden chairs, each carved with an intricate bird or flower. Servers weave between these chairs to dole out menu items prepared with just as much exotic flair, including pizza mexicana—an entree that swaps crusts for flour tortillas packed with shrimp, chicken, and steak—and signature fruity margaritas.
Authentic Mexican dishes slathered in salsa and mole sauce send up savory wisps of steam from atop Mi Lupita’s casual wooden tabletops. In the kitchen, chefs stuff tortillas with chicken, shrimp, and steak as well as more inventive ingredients such as cactus and mixologists swirl together 60-ounce margaritas behind a bar.
In the kitchens of La Cantina, sister restaurant to Amigos Cantina in Kirkwood, chef Robert Trevino whips up edible masterpieces. The menu includes authentic Mexican empanadas, fajitas, and tortas, inspired by culinary skills inherited from his mother and deep roots in Monte Morelos, Mexico and San Antonio, Texas. Guests dine under a canopy of Mexican tricolor flags, surrounded by dark-varnished wood on the ground floor, or climb the stairs to the balcony for meals of carnitas and pollo monterrey sided with frosty hand-shaken margaritas on their Margarita Monday.
At El Paisano, it’s not uncommon to spot a baby in a giant sombrero or a mariachi serenading a diner with a tiny trumpet. This lively Mexican eatery bustles with color and energy from morning until nightfall—particularly on the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month, when it plays host to live mariachi performances. Attentive servers bustle about the bright dining room, toting complimentary chips and salsa and giant frozen margaritas. Colorful hanging lights illuminate the festive tablecloths and Mexican murals that stretch across the walls.
Meanwhile, in the kitchen, seasoned chefs fold meats and seafood into authentic Mexican specialties—from cheesy chicken chilaquiles to creamy lobster enchiladas. To craft their specialty parrillada dish, they sizzle Spanish-style sausage, grilled steak, chicken breast, and bacon-wrapped jumbo shrimp on a crackling skillet. For dessert, the chefs eschew lackluster meal enders such as cheesecake bought from the store or plastic crumpets borrowed from a child’s tea set in favor of flan, tres leches cake, and other authentically prepared regional specialties.
Designed to charge the senses and infuriate passing bulls, El Borracho's red walls evoke every aspect of Mexican culture and pop culture’s take on Mexico, featuring arched sconces stuffed with Catholic icons; pink nooks highlighting vintage photos; and bones, daggers, and matador portraits hanging from stripped wood panels. The décor keeps awkward silences in conversations to a minimum while adding spice to the sizzling menu. El Borracho serves its foodstuffs family-style, much like they do in authentic Mexican taquerias, only without the complimentary cactus massage. Tacos are available for $2.25–$2.75, while burritos and quesadilla go for $5 a pop. The restaurant provides the trimmings—such as cilantro, onion, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and refried beans—while the customer selects the carne, be it chicken, ground beef, carnitas, chupacabra, or chorizo. Milder palates can get their tacos gringo (flour tortilla, lettuce, tomato, onion, and cheese); true revolutionaries can get them Pancho (corn tortilla, cilantro, onion, and redistributed land).