Mexican Restaurants in New York City


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  • La Palapa Rockola
    Recipes give insight into a culture, and chef and restaurateur Barbara Sibley deeply understands this seemingly simple concept. Originally born and raised in Mexico City, Barbara furthered a passion for indigenous cuisines while studying anthropology in college. She then devoted years to researching and collecting Mexican recipes from as far back as the 1600s, and in the process, she steadily became an ambassador for the culinary techniques and ingredients that define authentic Mexican cuisine. In addition to sharing this expertise with CBS New York, the Food Network, and cooking classes, Barbara published a collection of 75 recipes in her cookbook—Antojitos: Festive & Flavorful Mexican Small Plates. If the cookbook is a reference source, then a meal at La Palapa is an immersive learning experience. Barbara drew upon her research as well as her extensive culinary experience when she founded the restaurant, designing a pan-regional menu of familiar staples and little-known gems that the New York Times hailed as "fascinating." Mexico City–style tacos brim with chili-rubbed pork and pineapple or corn sautéed in assertively herbal epazote, and grilled duck breast arrives in a decadently complex Oaxacan mole sauce made with 26 ingredients. Tradition remains of the utmost importance though, and Barbara takes care to hand make everything from cheese to chorizo in-house. La Palapa takes its name from the Spanish word for the palm-thatched shelters that adorn Mexican beaches: an image that complements the restaurant's casual and inviting ambiance. The dining room manages to embrace its roots by prominently displaying images of Mexico City from the 17th century as well as modern sculptures inspired by pre-Columbian ceramic figures. Although the brickwork archways contribute to this sense of antiquity, La Palapa also features a handful of modern touches, including hourglass-shaped pendant lamps, a jukebox, and levitating barstools.
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    77 St. Mark's Place
    New York, NY US
  • Papatzul
    Thierry Amezcua recreates the restaurant atmosphere he remembers from his native Mexico City with classic recipes, artwork borrowed from his brother, and even a bartender from his former neighborhood, Coyoacán. With help in the kitchen from his wife, Debby, as well as expertise gained during stints at Savoy and Il Buco, Amezcua fills Papatzul's menu with nopalitos––prickly pear stems––dashes of chipotle, yucca roots, and other singular Mexican flavors. Chilaquiles, in a choice of green tomatillo poblano or red pasilla chili sauce, kick off the brunch menu alongside huevos rancheros with avocado and queso fresco. Appetizers such as the elote de Coyoacán—dubbed "obscenely tasty" by Forbes—slather corn on the cob with cream, cheese, and spicy chilis. Diners can sample lunch and dinner entrees such as seafood enchiladas or tacos with braised chipotle beef. Behind the bar, dozens of tequilas showcase the spirit's versatility, and can be sipped straight or stirred into fruit and flower margaritas. Mexican masks and Day of the Dead–inspired paintings dot the dining-room walls above long leather banquettes, where Amezcua maintains a festive party atmosphere with soft lighting, strings of colorful papel picado, and a wait staff that communicates only through confetti poppers.
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    55 Grand Street
    New York, NY US
  • Agave
    Beneath Agave Restaurant's rustic, hand-laid ceiling of spruce fir imported from New Mexico, bartenders mix more than 150 tequilas and mezcals—including those infused in-house with jalapeno and pink peppercorn—into tangy margaritas and specialty cocktails. In the kitchen, chefs braise duck, roast mushrooms, and smoke tomato chutneys to craft upscale enchiladas, tacos, and southwestern entrees that transcend typical Mexican fare. As noted by New York magazine, “The whimsical menu, too, breaks the mold with unexpected combinations like Tejas Gulf shrimp and blue crab cakes with argula, cilantro lime crema, and charred chile arroz verde.” Their contemporary and lengthy wine list betrays the tequila-laden cocktail menu by including diverse varietals from all over the Americas. A backlit bar, candlelit fireplaces, and invisible dragons cast a soft glow upon creamy adobe walls and white clothed tables, creating an atmosphere that is both pastoral and elegant. An outdoor patio bridges the divide between New York and the Southwest by blending a New Mexico–style atrium with the lively chatter of West Village neighbors.
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    140 7th Avenue South
    New York, NY US
  • Montezuma Mexican Restaurant
    A well-known Tex-Mex restaurant in the Bronx, Montezuma is the ideal location for a delicious menu. The amazing service and a fantastic meal, set in a laid-back atmosphere, will make you a regular. Many patrons will be quick to share that Montezuma is known for its margaritas. Try to remember that business casual is the suggested attire. Having said that, we wouldn't plan on arranging a quiet meeting here, however; it's common knowledge that the background noise can get a little loud. Upon arrival, see if you can try the rice and beans or the marinara sauce, since they're both sure to make an impression. For those watching what they eat, the robust menu does feature items that are gluten-free, low-fat, and vegetarian. In addition to its convenient take-out menu, the restaurant even provides catering for events around town. Or, if you just want to stop by for a beverage, the restaurant has a good selection at its bar. A reputable option for dinner, chances are you won't walk away from Montezuma Mexican Restaurant disappointed. Visitors to the restaurant have access to a private lot nearby or can park on the street.
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    119 W Kingsbridge Rd
    Bronx, NY US
  • Oaxaca
    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.
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    48 Greenwich Ave.
    New York, NY US
  • Qdoba Mexican Grill
    The premier destination for delicious chicken, Qdoba Mexican Grill in Fresh Meadows on 188th St is one of the area's best-rated restaurants. It's a culinary destination for those interested in great food. Thanks to its outdoor seating, the restaurant is a fantastic option when the New York weather is nice. There's no particular required attire, so feel free to dress comfortably. Also, though the overall price may be low, you can bank on the ingredients being fresh. In fact, you should easily be able to enjoy a good meal for nine or ten bucks, and can probably get in and out for just a Lincoln if you try. In addition to its standard menu that's well-suited for take-out, the restaurant even provides catering for events around town. A reliable favorite for any meal of the day in Fresh Meadows, a trip to this Qdoba is definitely worthwhile. Visitors to the restaurant have access to a private lot nearby or can park on the street. Would you rather pedal your way there? Bicycle parking is also provided.
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    6140 188th St
    Fresh Meadows, NY US

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