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NC Triangle - non-chain Mexican in Cary?

Are there any good Mexican restaurants in Cary? To my knowledge, all of the Mexican restaurants here are chains - Los Treys Mageuyes, El Dorado, Toreros, etc. I usually go to Raleigh (Las Margaritas), Durham, or Chapel Hill when I'm craving Mexican, but I'd love to find a go-to place closer to home. Any ideas?

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  1. There is a great taqueria just south of the Maynard and Chatham intersection.

    1. Is there something specific that you're looking for? The restos you mention are primarily local chains, so it's not like the PF Chang-type of chain with mass produced food.

      1. has anyone been to the taco truck near davis drive and mccrimmon pkway?

        1. Make the trek over near WalMart off New Hope Church in N Raleigh. Off Ronalda across the parking lot from the entrance in a small strip mall. Inexpensive, authentic and delicious!

          1. What I'm looking for is a place that is locally owned and worth supporting. I.e. ideally a restaurant run by a local family with their own recipes and interpretation of Mexican cooking. The problem I have with even the "local chains" is they all start to blend together and taste the same...presumably to cater to as many people as possible?

            It seems like Cary and the surrounding area has several good, local places for Indian (Kandas, Saffron), Asian (An, Lemongrass), Italian (Bella Monica), Cuban (Carmen's), etc, but I've been hard pressed to find a Mexican restuarant equivalent.

            I'll have to try the taqueria off Maynard - thanks for the tip on this one!

            1 Reply
            1. re: mgreig

              As km4874 has said, try the one by the New Hope Walmart, it is called Fonda Birrieria Jalisco and the address is 1600-107 Ronald Dr. It is the real deal, authentic and tasty. For good Mexican you need to go to the places catering to the Mexicans, all the places catering to non Mexicans are the same regardless of the name.

            2. I highly recommend Tacos Mexico- it's in Apex, but still pretty close. It's located on 55, just south of Salem Street. It doesn't look like much from the outside- just a cinder block building, but the inside is very nice, and the people are super nice, and the food is great.

              1 Reply
              1. re: jcfitz

                Second the vote for Tacos Mexico!

              2. My husband and I have been going to La Cocina (right off Hwy 64 on Lake Pine Drive) and we love it. I believe it used to be a Bennigans. Anyway, I know it is a family-type chain...typical authentic Mexican, but so so good and the margaritas and service are simply outstanding.

                4 Replies
                1. re: shrixer78

                  Why wouldn't Los Tres Maguyes be consdiered a non-chain? It's a local establishment that has just recently added two locations. While it doesn't match La Fiesta west of Chapel Hill or any of the taquerias, I do believe Los Tres is superior to all of the El Rodeos, El Dorados, et al.

                  La Cocina is average...nothing different than El Rodeo.

                  1. re: jsb23nc

                    Eh, maybe I haven't tried the right one, but the new-ish Los Tres Magueyes on 54 and Cark Pkwy did not impress me at all. Huge portions, yes, but very bland and ordinary. This did not strike me as home-made food...I could be wrong, but it tasted like most of their ingrendents were re-hydrated, dumped from a can, or otherwise reconstituted. Their tortillas definitely weren't fresh either.

                    1. re: jsb23nc

                      That's why I asked the question about the local chains. I like La Cocina, but I didn't think it was any different than most of the other places the OP mentioned.

                      I did try the new El Rodeo last week (in the old Jibarra location) and thought it was pretty good. Everything seemed very fresh.

                      1. re: Suzy Q

                        Taqueria Rancho Grande is authentic and completely non-chain. Its at 1400 SE Maynard Road, near the Maynard-Chatham intersection. They have a great salsa bar with lots of fresh cilantro, pickled cabbage, verde, etc.