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It’s hard to be sad with a taco in your hand. Get your amigos together and try these delicious Mexican restaurants.
Did you know there’s a pocket of Mexico City in a basement on the edge of Chinatown? Moodily lit but bright with conversation and Mexi-kitsch decor, Bodega Underground is about good times. Peruse their massive 'agave bible', or just go for the happy hour drink specials. From bottomless brunch to late-night bites (until 1am), menus are gluten free. Many dishes can also be made vegan on request.
Tres a Cinco
In iconic Hosier Lane, next door to Movida, Tres a Cinco is an instant Melbourne classic born out of lockdown. Mexican chef Sarai Castillo made takeaway meals inspired by her homeland during those dreary days. They were such a hit she’s now heading this bricks-and-mortar eatery. Say hello to her tuna tostadas with chipotle aioli, avocado and fried leeks on crispy corn tortillas. Maybe wash them down with a cheeky pineapple mezcalita made with Peloton mezcal, charred pineapple, agave and lime.
Have you found Saporito Taquito in Southbank’s back streets? It’s a great place for authentic Mexican food and drinks, including imported beers. Feast on no-fuss feeds like chicken tostadas and beer-battered fish tacos. Don't forget some guac mixed with pico de gallo salsa on the side. If you're going all veg, try the broccoli smothered in cheese, truffle and nut butter.
Market-to-table Mexican, from breakfast to late-night snacks. That's the Mejico approach that puts this CBD spot high on our list. It's inspired by the flavours and techniques of Mexico City and the Yucatan Peninsula. So you can travel without moving, starting with guacamole prepared at your table. Try the Daylesford beef brisket empanadas, and end with margarita cheesecake.
A cosy cantina near the Queen Victoria Market, El Sabor offers super-fresh Mexican flavours. We recommend their sopes. Handmade corn tortillas are topped with your choice of chicken, beef or spicy potatoes, and more. Check out the daily meal deals too. Whatever you choose, from vegan fajitas to pork belly tacos, leave room for the classic flan.
Making corn tortillas for top restaurants and home cooks isn’t enough for La Tortilleria. They also serve instant Mexican gratification where it all began, at this cute, colourful Kensington eatery. So go to the source and tuck into fresh, authentic street food, from tacos to quesadillas. For dessert, try the flan made from Gerardo’s grandmother’s special recipe.
When it’s time for a fiesta – or just a weeknight treat – head to the sixth floor of Curtin House. In a cool old-meets-new space, Mesa Verde serves bold and beautiful takes on traditional Mexican fare. Think raw oysters with green apple mignonette and chilli oil. Or crispy lamb ribs with onion-chile jam and pickled fennel. Oh, and did we mention they have one of Australia’s largest collections of tequila and mezcal?
Boasting hand-pressed tortillas and an ever-changing seasonal menu, you can’t go wrong at Taquito. Located in the heart of Carlton, this Mexican-inspired cantina serves up classic dishes like salsa-topped BBQ corn and coconut-infused ceviche. It’s hard to go past the taco flight where you can choose four mouth-watering taco options. Want to try it all? Go for the Chef’s feed me menu.
Located at the Lonsdale Street end of Hardware Lane, Amigos has the right atmosphere for any occasion. Choose from three levels, including alfresco laneway seating, and a menu of temptations. Will you go classic corn chips, dips and burritos? Or something a bit fancy like the chicken, honey and mustard fajita? You’re in for some serious food envy, no matter what you order.
Nestled at the top of an unassuming staircase, Mamasita is one of Melbourne’s original modern Mexican hotspots. Impress the most discerning foodies with mouth-watering pulled chicken, jalapeno cream and black bean puree tostadas. Or marinated fish tacos with chipotle mayo and pico de gallo. Drinks are rather good too. Cucumber-jalapeño margarita, anyone? Good news, amigos – there's no need to queue any more because bookings are now available.
More Mexican flavours
Fonda Flinders Lane
Healthy and affordable Mexican street food inspired by the community restaurants of Mexico.
Chilangos Mexican Cantina
A popular Docklands spot serving burritos, tacos and Mexican drinks.
Where to find the best margaritas in Melbourne
Where to find the best traditional margaritas, fruity fusions, $10 cocktails and more.
Last updated on Fri 4 Feb 2022
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