Maria’s Cantina cultivates a comfortable, homey feel from its implementation of Old-World recipes to its use of fresh, organic ingredients from nearby farms. The accommodating staff treats its customers like extended family, inviting them to lounge at sleek wooden tables as they sup on painstakingly prepared tacos, sip top-shelf margaritas, or leaf through the chef’s grandparents’ wedding album.
When food expediters erupt from Poco Loco Mexican Restaurant's kitchen, their arms are hidden beneath stacks of fajitas, enchiladas, and accents of sweet mole. The cozy eatery has welcomed guests into the aromatic embrace of its exposed-brick walls and Mexican tapestries for 20 years and keeps the party going with flat-screen TVs and whirring margarita blenders. After patrons cool palates with a traditional, lime-marinated ceviche, they can retreat to the outdoor patio for some sun or question servers about the philosophical ramifications of being one who is consistently waiting.
A stunning woman stands offering a basket of guavas, mangoes, and prickly pineapples in her outstretched arms. Behind her, a roaring waterfall spills into a crystal-blue lagoon, on the outskirts of which sky-high trees shelter sprouting vegetables. Hand-painted murals such as these span the walls of Sante Fe Tequila's elegant dining room, where Mexican and Latin plates line tables like colorful brushstrokes on a canvas.
Rife with modern creative touches, the menu bristles with dishes such as whole deboned fresh-caught fish and shrimp and mussels sautéed in white wine. Quality takes precedent over haste as traditional ceviche slow-cooks in lime and skirt steak marinates for a full day in Patrón tequila—all to complement amply stuffed chilies, burritos, fajitas, and enchiladas available with seafood or chicken. After a martini or margarita made with premium liquor, patrons can end the meal by grabbing one of the eatery's bright red tablecloths to distract any stray bulls they encounter on the way to the car.
Oaxaca Taqueria captures the essence of Mexico's street vendors with authentic Mexican food made fresh daily with local and environmentally sustainable ingredients. Their devotion to all-natural meats and crisp garden-grown veggies hasn't gone unnoticed. The New York Times, Time Out New York, and New York Magazine lavished praise upon the food at Oaxaca's four locations, causing the food to become as full of itself as the patrons who frequent the eatery. Known for their light tacos and enchiladas, Oaxaca's chefs stuff carne asada, stewed chicken, and frijoles onto or into corn tortillas for entrees. They grill their Mexican sandwiches, known as tortas, on talera bread, and they serve heaps of their three entrees with rice and beans when catering. Each location boasts a daily lunch special featuring one of their three mainstays, which guests can with one of their traditional beverages such as jarritos or horchata.
Live music and the fragrance of baking pizza fill the warmly lit interior of CU 29 Copper. Whether nestled into a plush, old-fashioned sofa or sitting outside under burrito-shaped constellations on the patio, guests tuck into brunch, lunch, and dinner dishes that combine Mexican, Italian, and American cuisine. The brick oven's flames toss light onto gold, sponge-painted walls that pop with painted murals and brick archways. Bottomless mimosas, bellinis, and bloody marys prep brunch-time gullets for omelets, tacos, and desserts, and shrimp ceviche swims into the mouths of lunch and dinner diners. Forks can sink tines into organic quinoa salad, free-range chicken, or spoon rivals as they tour CU 29’s globetrotting dishes.
The red-brick exterior of Los Hermanos seems rather quiet, with its garage-door entry and painted block-letter sign. But inside, there is a flurry of activity. On one side of a Plexiglass wall, crew members bake fresh corn tortillas; on the other side, diners sit in a cantina, watching the process. Though some of the tortillas are packaged for retail distribution, others are used in the cantina for tacos and tostadas stuffed with veggies or one of six meats, including chorizo or spicy pork. As New York Magazine noted, “the delicately cooked fillings hardly need additional dressing”, but diners can scan the cooler for containers of homemade salsas.