The family that owns Tacos and Company is dedicated to authenticity. Since they opened the first of their three locations in 1991, they've been crafting burritos, seafood tacos, and steaks by drawing upon techniques honed at Mexico's food stands, rural kitchens, and guacamole rivers. Fresh produce and seafood, lard-free beans, and premium meats—like slow-cooked carnitas—join up with house marinade and daily made salsas. Every single corn chip lands on a plate the day it emerges from the fryer. Vegetarian options abound, too. The eatery's catering skills are praised by clients.
Caliente Southwest Grille whips up Mexican eats from ingredients brought in fresh daily. The menu brims with masterful Southwestern dishes, straddling the border between two cuisines like a foie gras Hot Pocket. The carnitas burrito ($5.35) wraps flour tortillas around tender chunks of slowly braised pork, pico de gallo, salsa, cheese, and guacamole, and the wow chicken taco ($2.85) drizzles a bright citrus dressing over grilled chicken, jicama, cucumber, lettuce, queso, and pepitas. Health-conscious diners will delight at the eatery’s salad selection, including a caliente tropical salad ($5.45) made with sweet chopped apples, sun-dried blueberries, pineapple and jicama lounging atop a bed of fresh romaine lettuce. Toast the completion of a difficult crossword puzzle with refreshing libations, available in domestic ($2.95) and imported ($3.50) varieties as well as an exotic, grape-hewn “wine” ($3.50) format.
From 14-hour days during the beginnings of their first restaurant in Long Beach more than 37 years ago, Super Mex founders Manuel and Socorro Orozco built franchises across Southern California. Inspired by the local cuisine of the village he was born in—Villa Jimenez, Michoacan, Mexico—Manuel brought his passion for traditional Mexican food to California, where the business grew with a dedicated following of college students. Striving to craft dishes that taste homemade, Super Mex offers Mexican classics such as burritos, tostadas, and flautas.
Rockin' Baja Coastal Cantina's positive local press hones in on its Puerta Nuevo–style Mexican coastal menu, overflowing with buckets of fresh, high-quality seafood and beachy spins on traditional Mexican dishes. Baja's specialty is its Seafood Baja Buckets, pails filled with alaskan king crab, lobster tail, shrimp, snow crab, and more, all flash-fried in the shell, seasoned with mexican spices and flanked by ranchero beans, mexican rice, flour tortillas, and honey chill butter ($17.99–$39.99). For non-bucketed fare, the Outrageous Tacos come outfitted with steak, pork, or grilled chicken interiors ($8.99+), while Gnarly Nachos slather crispy corn tortilla chips with cheese, ranchero beans, jalapeños, tomatoes, and guacamole ($9.99). Diners are given the gift of unlimited chips and salsa, and Rockin' Baja's crew is capable of delivering appointed table captains beer by the bucketful even with hook hands ($18–$23).