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Help!! Are there any good mexican food restauants in Phoenix!!

I am looking for a mexican food restaurant in the central Phoenix are that has TRUE mexican food- not Americanized (no burros on the menu, please).

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  1. There are some good suggestions in this thread:

    My current favorites are El Nopalito (24th St at Thomas) and La Barquita (McDowell near 22nd St). I had a not so great experience at Pepe's (Camelback near 23rd Ave) recently, but need to give them another try before taking them off my list.

    Pepe's Taco Villa
    2108 W Camelback Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85015

    El Nopalito
    2831 N 24th St, Phoenix, AZ 85008

    La Barquita Restaurant
    2334 E McDowell Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85006

    1. altho i might think some clarification is in order. do you just hate the word burro or do you think burrito's are an abomination? 'true mexican' is certainly in the eye of the beholder, and certainly a rich and varied cuisine with unique and distinct regional influences.

      my current fav's for mexican are carolina's, a legendary local dive with the best tortilla's on earth and divine enchilada sauce

      and barrio cafe - conchita pibil is the stuff of legends. tableside quac is a nice touch. no reso's if that concerns you.

      Carolina's Mexican Food Restaurant
      1202 E Mohave St, Phoenix, AZ 85034

      1. I haven't been to El Napolito or La Barquita, but I don't think Pepe's is what you're looking for if you have zero tolerance for burros / burritos. Pepe's has some completely non-Americanized items (e.g. beef head / cabeza), but it also serves familiar border favorites (made very well, by the way).

        It sounds like you're looking for interior Mexican cooking, devoid of any New Mexican, Sonoran, or Tex-Mex touches. If that's the case, I think the Barrio Cafe and Asi
        Es La Vida are probably your best bets. You might also try the various Mexican seafood restaurants in South Phoenix. Anything with "mariscos" or "bahia" in the name is usually a good bet.

        Barrio Cafe
        2814 N 16th St, Phoenix, AZ 85006

        Asi Es La Vida
        3602 N 24th St, Phoenix, AZ 85016

        1 Reply
        1. re: silverbear

          San Diego Bay in Guadalupe does Mexican seafood quite well and might fall into these criteria.

        2. Barrio Cafe
          La Hacienda

          Who questions the validity of Mexican food in Phoenix anyway?

          1 Reply
          1. re: AZBconcierge

            I've questioned it at various places around town that I've been dragged to (e.g., Rosita's, Manuel's, Valle Luna) . Gringo-ized Mexican food is not that hard to find around here.

          2. If you like NM Hot you have to try Los Dos Molino's, 2 locations & family owned. One is located on Central Ave, South of Baseline, the other is in Mesa. Excellent food & have been going their once a week for over 10 years. If you like Mexico City type, not hot but very flavorful La Parilla Suiza is also very good. Two locations that I know of, One in Paradise Valley, the other on 35th Ave & Dunlap.

            2 Replies
            1. re: tearly

              I think OP would like La Parilla Suiza. Try the grilled green onions as an app.

              1. re: ajs228

                La Parilla Suiza doesn't get great press here, but we thoroughly enjoy it. The meats are wonderful, and they don't serve your food with cheese!!!
                This was my grandparents' old standby restaurant - my grandmother loved their enchildadas suizas. They're one of the few spots in town to find good chilaquiles.

                It clearly passes the rule above.

            2. I think El Nopalito has probably some of the most authentic Mexican food in the Valley, but I caution you not to throw out the baby with the bathwater. Often, even the most authentic places will offer burros or anything else you might consider "Americanized" because they must appeal to a broad range of tastes in order to get customers in the door.

              1. Sierra Bonita Grill on 7th and Glendale does Oaxacan food as well and is pretty reasonable. But I also like Via de Losantos on Central and Dunlap, but that is more Sonoran style food.


                1. Wife of chef... let me guess, Mrs. Harry Morton? He wasn't able to find any good Mexican food around here, either. Burritos *are* authentic Mexican food, first popularized in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua in the early 20th century. Seth Chadwick is dead on the money; excluding places that you consider "Americanized" just because much of the Mexican food here shows strong influences from our neighboring regions of Sonora and Chihuahua takes off the list a large number of very delicious places.

                  By your criteria, the only restaurant I can personally recommend for you is Barrio Cafe, on 16th Street just south of Thomas. I consider it to be some of the finest Mexican food in town, regional influence be damned. The guacamole (prepared tableside) is wonderful A couple of miles down 16th Street on Roosevelt is Phoenix Ranch Market. Inside is a dazzling array of foods, with a large food court area that serves up all kinds of Mexican foods. Further inside is a tortilleria that churns out fresh tortillas all day. There is also a pescateria that offers up delicious fresh fish and shrimp tacos. Next door is Tradiciones, owned by the same people as the Ranch Market. They feature foods from all over Mexico. You will find the dreaded burritos on the menu, but you will also find excellent carne asada con chilaquiles, and wonderful pollo en mole.

                  1602 E Roosevelt St, Phoenix, AZ 85006

                  1. Call me odd - but I still think that the best green chile enchilada sauce in town is at the local, family run (mini-chain) Serranos. While the original location in Chandler remains my favorite - when I have the gunk, I truly think anything slathered in green enchilada sauce is about a cure all. IMHO.


                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Bazel

                      I enjoyed a meal at a little place I ran across this past spring called Restaurant Huauchinango located at 7620 E McKellips (between Scottsdale and Hayden/McClintock Roads on Miller [480-970-9962]). Extremely unique cuisine in comparison to many other Mexican restaurants. I remember having some excellent goat consomme, and their quesadillas were unlike any I've ever had elsewhere. Not a fancy place by any means, but solid food nonetheless. You can get huaraches, sopes, and tlacoyas topped with pork rinds, tinga, etc. Again, not the typical Mexican menu.