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GOOD Mexican food.

s
sean May 11, 2006 09:50 AM

Hola Toronto.

I've been up here in T-town since January. Being a native and lifetime Californian... I am REALLY missing some good taco stand fare. I've had Burrito Boyz on Peter street and I think it's awful (I know alot of locals are fond of it, but it's about as Mexican as Taco Bell).

Can anyone who's spent some time in the Southwest U.S. or Mexico and knows of the real deal in these parts make a suggestion?

Thanks guys!

  1. duckdown Dec 3, 2008 12:19 PM

    Best I've had by a longshot is El Sombrero in Mississauga... Family owned by a mexican couple, and it is delicious. Make sure you get a tacquito or two on the side!

    1 Reply
    1. re: duckdown
      Kagemusha Dec 3, 2008 05:54 PM

      Sorry but that place is like haute Taco Bell. Just returned from a week in Phoenix where Mom+Pops that close at 8 weeknights blow El Sombrero into the weeds. Even the iffy, cheapo taco joints there are better than the poseur efforts around the GTA.

    2. Davwud Dec 3, 2008 09:39 AM

      Sean.

      I don't know if you get north of the city much but in Bradford there is a place called, Lamexicanada. It's excellent.
      The guy is from Oaxica (Wahaka) and cooks everything on site. The hours are a bit spotty and he's closed all of January.
      The fields around Bradford are full of Mexicans during the summer months.

      Call ahead for hours.
      http://www.restaurantica.com/on/bradf...

      DT

      1. a
        aveivy Dec 3, 2008 09:19 AM

        Have you tried El Trompo in Kensington Market? It's on Augusta just below College (277 Augusta, to be exact). http://www.eltrompo.ca/

        I'm hooked on the two big bowls of salsa on every table. It's not fancy, and neither is the food. But there's a great down-home quality to what they do.

        So far nothing I've had comes with sour cream. And there are no burritos on the menu.

        1. s
          sethrOSU Dec 3, 2008 07:48 AM

          i lived in mexico with a mexican family for several months and while Tacos El Asador isn't really "mexican" its pretty solid in terms of food. when i went there were two older ladies in the back cooking and i really enjoyed what i got. another one is calli latin cafe or something like that near on Dundas which again isn't really authentic mexican but it has very well executed food and great guacamole.

          1 Reply
          1. re: sethrOSU
            FrancoYYZ Dec 3, 2008 08:11 AM

            Try Milagro on Mecer.
            Great authentic Mexican...

          2. j
            JoDelicious Mar 9, 2007 01:11 PM

            I recommend La Jungla on Dufferin. In a crappy location and ugly...but the food is good and the most authentic I've found. They have the right cheese (the white crumbled stuff - I don't know what it's called...I've only seen in Mexico or at Kensington) to sprinkle on the beans, you know? Also Kensington Market has some good & authentic central american food stands...empanadas, pupusas & such.

            1 Reply
            1. re: JoDelicious
              f
              FlavoursGal Mar 9, 2007 01:35 PM

              I just googled La Jungla and although it sounds good, it is Salvadoran, not Mexican. Worth a try anyway.

            2. redearth Mar 8, 2007 02:37 PM

              Rebozos (126 Rogers, at Boon, 416-658-5001) Open Tuesday to Thursday 11 am to 8 pm, Friday and Saturday 11 am to 9 pm, Sunday noon to 7 pm. Closed Monday, holidays. Unlicensed. Access: five steps at door, no washrooms. Rating: NNNN

              Source: NOW

              Rebozo's is as authentic as it gets!

              1. m
                Michael May 18, 2006 03:02 PM

                I would suggest El Jacalito at 1500 Royal York Rd. (Royal York Plaza) Unit 21-B Toronto
                416)244 4447
                http://www.torontohispano.com/profile...

                I've been there a couple of times with Mexican friends, and they've enjoyed it. Saturday nights they have live music and folkloric dancing, with a buffet, so it's a bit pricey. Other nights would be quieter and there is no buffet. On Sundays they have barbacoa, which is a lamb dish.

                1. h
                  Hoegaarden May 13, 2006 10:36 AM

                  I am going to check out Cantina Mexicana in Streetsville this week. Might be a bit far to travel (Mississauga), but if it is any good I'll respond and maybe you'd be in for the trip considering some of the replies here ;)

                  1. t
                    Tara May 12, 2006 10:58 AM

                    What about Jalapenos (King/Bathurst). I wouldn't consider them tex-mex at all.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Tara
                      j
                      Joanne May 12, 2006 02:36 PM

                      I have to second Jalapeno. I love this place - it's a bit pricey for what you get, but the corn tortillas are homemade and plentiful, the mole is flavourful and they make a mean pozole.

                      Link: http://www.jalapeno.ca/

                      1. re: Joanne
                        r
                        Ronin May 12, 2006 04:01 PM

                        Agreed that it's pricey for what's tarted-up ordinary fare of no real distinction. Their mole is no better than the pre-fab versions. I found it depressing and was grateful that someone else popped for a very pedestrian meal.Sorry.

                    2. s
                      superizzy May 12, 2006 12:49 AM

                      Good luck..

                      Even Katmandu had better Mexican than Toronto.

                      El Asador is good for what it is (simple tacos and pupusas, but they are from ElSalvador).

                      Ok Tex-mex at Dos Amigos on Bathurst at Davenport and El Palenque on St Clair but nothing truly out of this world.

                      Hasnt been a decent place since the Iguana on N Avenue road closed like 10 years ago.

                      1. p
                        Paul May 11, 2006 08:32 PM

                        The closest Mexican food that you can find is in Mexico. Toronto is just full of mostly bad Tex- Mex places.

                        1. r
                          Ronin May 11, 2006 03:11 PM

                          I feel your pain as a Phoenician stuck here for 20+years. The Star article holds out some hope but as I was`quoted in the article, it's a sorry state of affairs. Ironically, the range and quality of raw materials has improved greatly for DIY, but true regional Mexican resto food is a long way off.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Ronin
                            s
                            sean May 11, 2006 03:43 PM

                            Yeah, I've been doing pretty good 'A casa, gringo mexicano comida', but the salsa, tortilla and refried beans, etc selection at lawblaws, dominions, and even Whole Foods leaves much to be desired.

                            The Carne Asada, and Pollo I got on lock down though!

                            Nice to hear a voice from the SW US.

                            Cheers and Thanks!

                            1. re: sean
                              r
                              Ronin May 11, 2006 04:49 PM

                              We're not exactly thick on the ground hereabouts. Try House of Spice down in Kensington Market for dried chiles--OK selection. Some of the Highland Farms barns have a slightly better selection of canned/bottled staples. The No Frills stores in my area(Mississauga)are stocking a growing range of Mexican stuff(question: who buys it???). Sadly the LCBO doesn't stock Pacifica beer any longer.Thank God my Mom still ships me goodies several times a year!

                          2. j
                            ja_jc May 11, 2006 02:54 PM

                            There is a little hole in the wall place in East York - Gonzos - 977 O'Conner (& St. Clair). I haven't been there in a few years but I recall that it was quite good and reasonably priced.

                            1. m
                              Mimi May 11, 2006 01:20 PM

                              Try

                              El Sol Mexican Art Cafe
                              1448 Danforth Av

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Mimi
                                p
                                Phil May 16, 2006 10:00 AM

                                El Sol always seems to be a popular recommendation for "authentic" Mexican food. Now's restaurant reviewer loves the place. I've never understood why. There's nothing authentic about the place - it's the standard Tex-Mex-ish fare of meat, lettuce, tomatoes and sour cream. And the service is unbelievably slow.

                              2. d
                                dannyboy May 11, 2006 01:10 PM

                                I don't think there is anything 'aweful' about Burrito Boyz at all...

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: dannyboy
                                  r
                                  Ronin May 11, 2006 03:15 PM

                                  Provided you don't see anything odd about an order of fish+chips crammed into a tortilla+salsa..Ay, Chihuahua! It ain't Mexican food.

                                  1. re: Ronin
                                    s
                                    sean May 11, 2006 03:45 PM

                                    Also, any mayo based sauce has no buisness in a burrito.

                                    Tortas maybe..

                                  2. re: dannyboy
                                    s
                                    Sean May 11, 2006 03:39 PM

                                    I'm sure you don't. As I said, I know the locals like it.

                                    Compared to what I'm looking for, it's pretty bad.

                                    It's not bad FOOD, but it's not GOOD Mexican.

                                    Thanks though!

                                  3. j
                                    jonocooks May 11, 2006 11:19 AM

                                    Although I realize they are not "authentic" I do like Burrito Boyz. Pretty sure AM is not their aim.

                                    Also not "authentic Mexican" (or even Mexican at all), I am fan of Tacos el Asador on Bloor east of Christie. Really basic offerings with clean, bright flavours - great quick meal. Closest thing to So Cal, SW and Mexican taco stands I've seen up here.

                                    I'm not sure about the Splendido staff meal - haven't had the pleasure of an invitation (hmmm ... maybe I should apply for a dishwashing job just to get in the door) - my annual Cinco de Mayo party features TO's best Pico de Gallo!

                                    1. n
                                      neuf May 11, 2006 11:16 AM

                                      You might want to check out this article in the Toronto Star. It was referenced further down the page, and mentions a few authentic places.

                                      Link: http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/Cont...

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: neuf
                                        s
                                        sean May 11, 2006 11:42 AM

                                        Excellent! And thank you. I will stopping by Rebozos ASAP!

                                        1. re: sean
                                          j
                                          Jose Esparza Jun 12, 2006 10:36 AM

                                          As a person who immigrated to Canada from Mexico I was delighted by the real authenticity of Rebozos food. Unfortunately, it's not a big restaurant (it only has one table), it's more like a taco stand or a pick-up place. Check their schedule because I guess they don't open late (I guess they close at 9pm). I so much wish they succeed because I would like them to open more branches in more centric areas, cause the food is really worth it (and is not expensive!!!).

                                      2. j
                                        jayseeca May 11, 2006 10:34 AM

                                        Finding good authentic Mexican food here is pretty much useless... I haven't tried many places, but so far the best I've had is Mariachis by Yonge-Eglington.

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