Let’s Taco ‘Bout the Best Mexican Restaurants in Los Angeles

October 14, 2020
Food & Drink
jason wolfe

The best way to round out any day of the week is to indulge in your favorite food until you can’t possibly eat anything else. Yes, we’re serious. Everyone has different types of cuisine that they’d classify as some of their favorites, but one thing remains pretty consistent across the board: everyone loves Mexican food. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite to tide you over while you’re on the go (like a taco) or something that you can sit down and enjoy (like enchiladas), L.A. has a little bit of everything to bring to the table. These are some of our favorites.

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Tlayuda L.A. Restaurant

Image courtesy of Tlayuda L.A. Restaurant Instagram

Website: tlayudala.com

Address: 5450 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90029

Neighborhood: East Hollywood

When we think of Mexican food, we tend to think of things like tacos, enchiladas, and tamales - all of which are some pretty common (and delicious) manifestations of Mexican food - but these aren’t all that the cuisine has to offer.

In fact, styles of Mexican food can most definitely be divided up into different regions of the country - and that’s the case with the cuisine they’ve incorporated into the menu at Tlayuda L.A. Restaurant.

Tlayuda uses Oaxacan cuisine, which, in the simplest of terms, can be summed up with food that is made with staples of cuisines you’ll find all over Mexico. These include things like beans, chile peppers, and corn. You’ll find these simple ingredients incorporated into almost every dish - and since they mostly stick to the basics here, you can taste each and every ingredient.

“I had the opportunity to taste some of their new vegan menu items made with jackfruit and a delicious hibiscus flavored drink.  I am not vegan and can tell you that I was fooled by this ‘meat.’” - Yelp Review

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Mercado Los Angeles

Image courtesy of Mercado Los Angeles Instagram

Website: cocinasycalaveras.com

Address: 7910 W 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048

Neighborhood: Beverly Grove

Traditional Mexican food is something we should all try to experience at least one time in our life. Here at Mercado Los Angeles, they’ll get you half-way there with a menu that combines both traditional Mexican cuisine and some contemporary twists.

Chef Jose runs the kitchen here, and he’s done a fantastic job of taking his knowledge of the food he grew up with and turning it into a menu that everyone will enjoy. They love to use fresh ingredients here, which is an added bonus to this already great restaurant.

Enjoy tacos and carnitas laced with fresh avocados and red onions, warm beans cooked up using Chef Jose’s special recipe, and even some rice that’s been perfectly seasoned with traditional Mexican spices.

“Mercado is my favorite LA restaurant! Their carnitas are life changing...I always take my friends and family who are visiting here and we always celebrate events here.” - Yelp Review

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Casa La Doña

Image courtesy of Casa La Doña Instagram

Website: facebook.com

Address: 800 S Main St., Los Angeles, CA 90014

Neighborhood: Downtown

If you love tacos more than life itself, we’ve found your new favorite Los Angeles restaurant. Located right in the heart of downtown L.A., Casa La Doña is a beloved favorite among many taco-loving regulars - not only because of their laid back and friendly staff, but also because of their Taco Tuesdays!

Every Tuesday, you can stop in and grab as many tacos as you can fit in your stomach for just $1 each. Now that’s what we call a deal!

They also have other Mexican options on their menu, of course, but the tacos are definitely some fan favorites. If you’re in the mood for some enchiladas or even just some chips and queso, they can do that for you, too. Be sure to check out their vegetarian options if you’re a veggie lover.

“Muy Tasty! I was very much impressed with the extensive salsa bar, handmade tortillas, and the meat options...This was my first time trying this spot out and all of the tacos were filled with flavor and tasty all at once.” - Yelp Review

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El Zarape Taqueria

Image courtesy of El Zarape Taqueria Instagram

Website: elzarapemelrose.com

Address: 5203 Fountain Ave., Ste B, Los Angeles, CA 90029

Neighborhood: East Hollywood

The predominant style of Mexican food in L.A. is what’s typically known as Cali-Mex, so if you’re itching to get your hands on some truly authentic Mexican food but not quite sure where to start, we’ve got you covered. 

El Zarape Taqueria is a Mexican restaurant owned and operated by Mexican immigrants who are ecstatic to share the cuisine they grew up on with anyone who wants to try it. Not only are all of the ingredients that they put into their dishes fresh, but they also make fresh tortillas daily!

You can get traditional street-style tacos here, or fajitas, burritos, and even chilaquiles. Their menu is pretty extensive, so if you feel a little overwhelmed, just ask your server to explain a couple things to you, and you're bound to be in for one of the best meals of your life.

“Great little outdoor taqueria serving quality food for fair prices. The veggie burrito is excellent! Rice, beans, cilantro, tomato, onion, and zucchini.” - Yelp Review

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Te’Kila

Image courtesy of Te’Kila Instagram

Website: tekilahollywood.com

Address: 6541 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

Neighborhood: Hollywood

Do you like your margaritas served up with a side of tacos? If so, you definitely need to try out Te’Kila when you and your friends go out for your end-of-the-week bar crawl to blow off the steam of a stressful week at work.

Te’Kila is the proud home of over 150 different bottles of tequila, they’re pretty well-stocked in the alcohol department. They’ll keep the drinks coming until last call. Oh, and they’ll feed you some Mexican food to sop up some of the alcohol in the meantime.

Each day has a special theme to go along with it, so you can stop in to enjoy whatever strikes your fancy: Margarita Mondays, Taco Tuesdays, or if you’re feeling a little spice, even Fajita Fridays!

“Great spot to come for happy hour and Taco Tuesdays! I highly recommend the steak fries appetizer! Enough to fill up two people. The prices aren't too bad and the service was excellent!” - Yelp Review

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Toca Madera

Image courtesy of Toca Madera Instagram

Website: tocamadera.com

Address: 8450 W 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048

Neighborhood: Beverly Grove

The best restaurant experiences engage each and every one of your senses: sound, touch, sight, smell, and - of course - taste. At Toca Madera, it is their mission to do this in the best way they can think of: through tasty Mexican food and even tastier cocktails.

At this restaurant, they’ve taken a lot of the traditional elements of Mexican food and given them an inventive modern twist that has us salivating at even the thought of what’s on their menu. Tacos, enchiladas, and even poke have been given unique new flavors that you’re about to fall in love with.

While you’re there, be sure to enjoy any one of their signature cocktails with your food for the ultimate dining experience. They also offer brunch, which gives you a whole new array of flavors they’ve melded together for you to check out!

“One of my favorite restaurants in the Weho Beverly Hills area. Food and drinks are outstanding, especially the desserts. Nice music and beautiful people.” - Yelp Review

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Salsa & Beer

Image courtesy of Salsa & Beer Instagram

Website: salsaandbeernorthhollywood.com

Address: 11669 Sherman Way, North Hollywood, CA 91607

Neighborhood: Sun Valley

Traditional Mexican food isn’t impossible - or even all that difficult - for you to come by, especially if you know where to look, but it is difficult to find traditional Mexican cuisine that originated in some very specific areas.

While the name may seem unassuming, Salsa & Beer is home to some of the best authentic Mexican food in the Valley - and their specific cuisine hails from Jerez,  Zacatecaz, which is located in central Mexico. Much of their cuisine is influenced by the surrounding areas, which makes it really unique!

Salsa & Beer boasts the best salsa in the Valley, and we reckon you should believe them. Every plate the serve up is made with the freshest possible ingredients, and they don’t shirk on the portions either, so you’ll leave feeling well-fed.

The best Mexican food!!!! My absolute favorite burrito in Los Angeles... I don't live super close to their locations but I am always willing to drive their and pick up a nice wet burrito.”.- Yelp Review

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There’s no shortage of Mexican food in Los Angeles, but finding exactly what it is that you’re looking for isn’t always easy. These are some of the best. Let us know which one is your favorite in the comments below!

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