The gastronomic gurus at La Piñata wield tortillas, mole sauce, and steak in the careful construction of the especialidades de la casa and burrito menus. Carnitas enclose succulent pork that has been simmered longer than Oscar the Grouch and braised to a crispy finish. Sample Mexico’s national dish, chicken breast bathed in mole sauce, or dive into a platter of sirloin-steak tips mingling with prawns alongside onions and green chilies, all lathered with a mild red sauce. Burritos can bear a choice of chicken, shredded beef, pork, or vegetarian fillings into waiting stomachs. The house margarita blend summons the powers of El Jimador Blanco tequila with naturally sweet sidekicks, including orange juice, agave nectar, and freshly squeezed lime juice.
The chefs at Azúcar Latin Bistro don't limit themselves to any one type of cuisine. Instead, they explore the spectrum of Latin American cooking, celebrating the bold flavors of Central and South America. They give equal attention, however, to more traditional dishes, including arroz con pollo, ceviche salvaje, and camarones a la diabla. The restaurant welcomes groups and families to celebrate its fun, tropical roots.
In either location's expansive lounge, bartenders whip up frosty mojitos and margaritas, which pair with a range of small plates. These lounges—and their dance floors—host live bands and DJs, as well as special events ranging from Monday-night salsa lessons to Wednesday-night bilingual karaoke to Thursday-night all-triangle jam sessions.
Since 1994, the chefs at Chacho's have been guarding the secrets of their time-honored family recipes for tacos, enchiladas, and burritos. They craft fresh ceviche, spicy salsas, and tamales from scratch as al pastor, chorizo, carne asada, and even soy substitutes sizzle on the grill. Outside the kitchen, bartenders concoct tangy margaritas, micheladas, and their signature chavelas upon a gleaming wooden bar, which reflects the star-shaped pendant lamps and thirsty ghosts that hang above.
The food and drinks aren’t the only thing that gives guests a taste of Mexican culture; Chacho's crimson-walled, loft-style dining room is at once both modern and rustic, breathing new life into old traditions through contemporary Day of the Dead–themed paintings, wall-mounted sculptures, and colorful sombreros.
It's been featured on the Travel Channel. It's 18 inches long—longer than most human newborns. It weighs in at a little more than five pounds. It's a burrito.
This monster, which goes by the name Burritozilla, is the signature dish at Iguanas. Chefs fill every square inch of the three tortillas required to contain it with hearty scoops of meat, salsa, sour cream, cheese, rice. beans, and guacamole. Many have stepped up to conquer the dish, from terrified local university students to Man v. Food's Adam Richman. But, with the understanding that not everyone would be able to defeat this oversized burrito, the Iguanas menu also holds creative interpretations of more manageably portioned Mexican classics.
Seven hand-trimmed meats—including grilled Angus-beef carne asada, tomatillo-braised pork, shredded chicken in spicy chipotle sauce, and carnitas—stuff tacos, tortas, and quesadillas. They also lounge atop nachos and even nacho fries. All this cheesy, juicy decadence aside, Iguanas’ menu is also big enough to include light, crisp taco salads and bitsy Baby Burritos and Tiny Tacos, the perfect size for kids or anyone who wants to make the Burritozilla look that much bigger.
For more than 50 years, the cooks at Guadalajara Market & Bakery have been wrapping carne asada, rice, and beans in soft tortillas for their signature jumbo burritos and spreading tangy guacamole over crisp chicken flautas. Beneath red tile eaves and graceful archways designed to mimic the atmosphere of a Mexican village square, they plate tostadas de ceviche and sizzling fajitas with beef, chicken, and shrimp. From the full bar, servers tote margaritas and micheladas alongside domestic and imported brews, which go well with tortilla chips and cheese, just as a crime-fighting dog joins the one human who can understand him.
Plaza Garibaldi Restaurant was named for the renowned plaza in Mexico, where droves of bright color-clad mariachis gather to belt out soulful ballads and serenade passersby. A nod to its namesake, the cheerful Mexican eatery features live mariachi performances every weekend—boisterous affairs complete with music, margaritas, and authentic Mexican dishes. A live mariachi show entertains diners Thursday through Sunday evenings beneath the vivid murals and Mexican artwork that decorate the walls. Bartenders stay just as busy behind the cherry wood bar, doling out sips from their selection of more than 100 tequilas and blending spices, lime juice, and clamato into massive micheladas.
While these festivities transpire in the dining room, chefs are hard at work in the kitchen. They fold handmade tortillas and housemade sauces into a sweeping variety of Mexican specialties, from creamy enchiladas rancheras to tender steak fajitas. They extend their culinary expertise toward an array of authentic seafood dishes, including a mixed seafood parrillada that serves four to five adults or one baby that hasn’t learned to share yet. For dessert, the chefs whip up warm pastries and sweet housemade flan.