The menu at La Boca Mexican Restaurant & Cantina goes beyond the usual Tex-Mex fare. Alongside fajitas and quesadillas, you’ll find traditional tamales, slow-roasted pork shank, and hand-cut corn tortilla chips. A talented staff of servers and bartenders cultivate a laid-back, festive atmosphere, serving up Mexican beers on draft and a celebrated bloody mary that’s garnished with asparagus, cocktail shrimp, and grilled steak. The eatery's parchment-colored walls are covered with drawings of proud vaqueros and rustic Mexican scenery, forming an ideal backdrop for authentic dinners of mahi mahi tacos or jicama salad. Pub rockers, live karaoke backing groups, and cover bands provide a festive soundtrack.
You would be hard pressed to find a can opener anywhere in the kitchen of Cilantro Mexican Grill. That's because the restaurant's chefs don't need one; they only cook with fresh ingredients. A typical day in their kitchen sees the chefs mashing the nutty flesh of ripe avocados into guacamole, slicing fresh tortillas to be fried and sprinkled with lime juice, and grilling adobo-seasoned chicken, steak, and fresh line-caught Atlantic pollock purchased from local fisherman at the docks of Point Judith, Rhode Island. Local growers get in on the action too, supplying the kitchen with tomatoes and onions. All five locations serve mason jar margaritas and craft beers with the Cranston location finding patrons sipping one of 20+ brews.
Diego's Newport crafts its refined menu of West Coast–style Mexican fare from fresh ingredients and bold flavors. Unlike a visit to the combination dentist office/DMV, the Baja calamari ($11) appetizer can be enjoyed two ways––sautéed with vegetables, jalapenos, lime juice, and diced tomatoes, or fried with Baja seasoning and a cup of spicy aioli for dipping. For lunch and dinner entrees, taste buds awaken to the perfect burrito ($11) that unfurls a plump tortilla pillow stuffed with chicken, avocado tomatillo, pineapple jicama salsa, and tomatoes, while an order of tequila-lime hanger steak frites ($18) quells carnivorous cravings with a grilled-to-order steak, tucked under a blanket of cilantro and garlic butter. Diego's Newport also serves breakfast dishes, such as the Paul Bunyan–sized poplar omelet ($9), which melds farm eggs with sautéed red onions, black bean salsa, lumberjack'd slices of spicy red bliss potatoes, and Babe's Oaxaca cheese.
Rhode Island Monthly reviewed Perro Salado and named it a Best of Rhode Island 2008 Editors' Pick. Newport Life Magazine readers named the restaurant's margarita Best of Newport County 2010. GoLocalProv featured it, and Yelpers give it a four-star average.