At Acitrón, chefs elevate traditional Mexican mainstays to bistro-level sophistication. Like the world’s most edible bionic man, each dish is assembled by a crack team using locally sourced produce, meats, and seafood, with menu items including tilapia fish tacos and the crepas de rajas poblanas stuffed with grilled poblano strips, corn kernels, yellow squash, zucchini, and sour cream. Meals unfold in a dining room decked with hardwood floors, floral artwork, and sparkling granite tables topped with flickering candles. Shielded by a basket of fresh limes, a full bar slings libations including margaritas, specialty cocktails, and tequila drinks. Acitrón’s scratch-made desserts also add sweet punctuation to meals with bites including flan, tres leches, and chocolate tamales topped with Mexican-vanilla ice cream.
Taking its name from the Spanish word for a young colt, El Potro treats diners to zesty feasts of sizzling steak fajitas, saucy chilaquiles, and tacos filled with spicy peppers and marinated meats. Festive Mexican décor surrounds diners, with red tile floors and orange walls framing chunky, solid-wood chairs that feature hand-painted images of horses, galloping vaqueros, and lasso-swinging centaurs. Alongside spreads of food and margaritas from the full bar, diners can revel in karaoke on Thursday or Sunday nights or swinging jams from the house band Mariachi Estampa de America on Fridays and Saturdays.
Named Boston's best Mexican restaurant in 2011 by readers of El Planeta newspaper, José's Mexican Restaurant curries favor by importing the culinary traditions of a small farming town in the mountains of southern Mexico. Chef Carlos Mendez's family members bustle by while patrons peruse the dinner menu for spicy starters such as homemade jalapeño poppers ($6.95/five), which burst with more cheesy flavor than a confetti cannon loaded with pepper jack. Mole—a complex brown sauce comprised of ground chilies, chocolate, tortillas, and spices—coats chicken enchiladas ($11.95), and a choice of sauces, including tomatillo or chipotle, accompanies two cornhusk-steamed pork tamales ($12.95). To craft Doña Reyna's original recipe for chilies rellenos ($15.95), chefs stuff poblano peppers with morsels of steak, then batter, deep-fry, and dress the chilies with salsa verde or traditional seasonings. José's Mexican Restaurant resembles a home, except for its uncommon lavender siding and neon-colored interior walls. In the dining room, Mexican-style paintings create an authentic ambiance, and an abundance of cacti imitate Gumby as they pose along the walls.
Within the bustling Faneuil Hall, Mija Cantina & Tequila Bar’s old-style décor transports diners to Mexico, while authentically crafted enchiladas and burritos complement more than 100 kinds of tequila. Since its opening, which caught the attention of the Boston Herald, Mija Cantina has delighted tongues with fresh guacamole and queso fresco. Diners hoist sails above their tables and grip knives betwixt their teeth before casting off with red snapper, lobster, and swordfish, or stay on solid ground with grilled steak and seared chicken breast. A selection of sides rounds out meals with additions ranging from the spicy lime mayo of corn on the cob to a simmering portion of pinto beans, bacon, and chorizo, whose protein boosts muscles after an evening workout or before a late-night battle royale.
Mija Cantina's décor, highlighted by NECN’s TV Diner and Thrillist, incorporates sun-bleached wood reclaimed from a Wyoming highway, iron candelabras, and leather booths to recreate the feel of a cantina from the past. Vaqueros celebrate romantic anniversaries of the day they married their six-shooters in the glow of lanterns or in the fresh breeze of outdoor seating as they quaff tequila made with 100% blue agave.:m]]
Beantown Taqueria specializes in spicy dualities. One side of their chalkboard menu splits off into authentic territory, boasting tacos on homemade corn tortillas and tostadas that Thrillist Boston claims will satisfy "SoBo purists." The other side embraces crispy Tex-Mex classics such as burritos and chimichangas drizzled in sour cream and guacamole. Guests stroll up to a counter whose wooden slats evoke a street taco stand, placing orders until 11 p.m. from Sunday to Wednesday and until 4 a.m. on weekends.
Using old family recipes, La Siesta offers fresh, homemade Mexican comfort food. Start out with chicken nachos ($7.95) and queso fundido peppered with chorizo and poblanos ($6.50), or feed a fleet of mouth ships from a la carte items, including cheese enchiladas ($2.50 each), steak tacos ($3.50 each), and chiles rellenos ($3.50 each). Special entrees such as shrimp fajitas ($14.95) and sautéed tilapia with white wine, black olives, and other veggies ($13.95) fire up tongue ovens, while deep-fried chimichangas combine shredded chicken or ground beef with pico de gallo, rice, and beans in a blanket of cheese, ranchero sauce, and sour cream ($9.95). Knock out lunchtime stomach rumbles with the huevos rancheros burrito, a combo of scrambled eggs and peppers alongside tomatoes, beans, and cheese ($5.95), or lure sweet teeth with flan and fried ice cream (both $3.95).