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Metro west Mexican

OUR fave place, Daniella's Cantina in Acton

has closed. This was a small, authentic mexican place with KILLER margaritas! The sign says they clsoed to allow the little breakfast place next door to expand...no other info. If anyone knows what happened or if they are reopening elsewhere, please fill us in. Otherwise, any suggestions for a replacement?

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  1. Not sure if Waltham is a bit too far away, but Taqueria Mexico and Taqueria El Amigo are two of my favorite authentic Mexican places in the Boston area.

    1. Tu Y O just opened in Needham...metro west but not really close to Acton either.

      1. La Tapatia in Marlboro. It's been around for years, though we only recently discovered it. It's a great family run dinerish type place. Both my wife and I agree that it's the best Mexican we've ever had outside of Mexico.

        3 Replies
          1. re: trufflehound

            I just went there for lunch on Friday- it's not downtown, and it's still open.

            1. re: trufflehound

              Mi Ranchito (not sure of the spelling) in downtown Marlborough closed this summer. La Tapatia is still very much alive.

          2. I find the Acapulcos restaurants (Southborough, Sudbury, Milford...maybe others) are pretty similar to Daniela's. Also good but a little far out, Cancun's in Grafton. You might also want to try Sierra's in Sudbury. Also check out the New England board - lots of more westerly Metro West discussion there.

            I do NOT recommend Canyon Cafe in Westborough. Some folks like it, but I've never had a good meal there. The food feels very heavy and under seasoned.

            7 Replies
            1. re: Eatin in Woostah

              Sierra's has seriously got to be the worst meal i have ever had, including the free ones you get in coach class on planes and elementary school cafeteria... They do have good drinks though but the food.. seriously horrible.

              1. re: hargau

                It can be hit or miss. :) I used to work nearby and we went there on occasion for lunch. It was OK - more sold on the proximity to work than anything. Though I did like the crawfish etouffe. It's an app but I get it as my meal. And the margaritas were good.

                1. re: hargau

                  Pretty much sums up my one visit to Sierra's - seriously good margaritas, seriously bad food.

                  1. re: hargau

                    Agree - Sierras is terrible

                    470 North Rd, Sudbury, MA 01776

                    1. re: greenengineer

                      I've heard that they're getting (got?) a real chef, so things may take a turn for the better. I will wait to hear what my sources say about it -- couldn't bear another meal there if things were the same!
                      They are known for their margaritas and bottled beer :)

                  2. re: Eatin in Woostah

                    No need to fear visits to Canyon Cafe.....they closed recently.

                    1. Canyon Cafe in Westborough has also closed, btw.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Sandypo

                        Didn't know! I don't get out there much any more. Any word if another restaurant is going in there?

                      2. The old Tobiko space in Nagog Mall had signs in the windows recently saying it was due to become a Mexican joint.

                        6 Replies
                        1. re: chickendhansak

                          In fact, it is going to be Daniela's, so presumably it's a move from the previous location.

                          Lights were on and someone was sitting at a table as I passed it, but it didn't look open yet.

                          1. re: chickendhansak

                            Best news ever. If you haven't been, give it a try. We has some hit or miss meals but after the second Margarita, it didn't matter :)

                            1. re: momoftwo

                              I haven't been to the original location but I'd certainly give it a try now it's near my office. Having said that I miss the Tobiko sushi lunch specials -- they were more than decent.

                              1. re: chickendhansak

                                Daniela's has opened in the Nagog Park Mall. The interior is considerably changed from Tobiko. There's a division down the middle of the large space that produces a dining room on one side and a bar on the other. They have a lunch menu with a fair range of Tex Mex options well under $10, and served complementary chips and (very mild) salsa. I'm sure I'll be there again.

                                It's a welcome addition to an area with a lot of offices around but only Scupperjacks, Crossroads Cafe, Il Forno and Bickfords to choose from in walking distance.

                                1. re: chickendhansak

                                  chicken, did you write this right after dining there? I was there as well since it was my b-day. A couple firnds and i went for lunch. My first margarita was totally watered down and tasteless, my firneds was so potent she couldn;t drink it. We combined the two and had a fairly decent one. My next two were delish, just like I remembered from the old place. My lunch was yummy, fresh and plentiful. They certainly could use more "punch" to the salsa. I think I'll ask next time, they certainly seem to aim to please.

                                  1. re: momoftwo

                                    Yes, I did write it just after eating there.

                                    I've been there a couple of times since and I'm afraid I would struggle to praise the food. They have nailed the cheap lunch plate idea, so there is plenty to choose from, which is good. The rice and beans are decent, but I've had enchiladas a couple of times and have concluded the tortillas are dry and the enchilada sauce has the taste and texture of something that came out of a jar. The meat is dry and randomly seasoned (dominant flavour of black pepper one time). Maybe a quesadilla next time.

                        2. Had dinner there last weekend and it was disappointing. Salsa was a liquid, thinner than a puree and without much flavor. We ordered two different specials and each was strictly OK. Service was poor, but our server was clearly VERY new to both waitressing and Mexican food - she has no idea what my husband wanted when he ordered a Tecate! I ordered a pink sangria and it had a very bitter (think powdered lemonade mix) flavor.

                          We'll try it again since we live very close, there are very few good restaurants in this area, and my husband is a Mexican food junkie. I hope they can work out the kinks so we can become regulars here.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: mrssamiam

                            The new location does sound interesting but not too interesting. We stopped in for a burrito once at the old location and it wasnt even "ok".. Never again went..

                          2. Avoid Tu Y Yo in Needham. I've been to the Somerville branch and it was fine. Went to Needham for lunch and what a ripoff. Ordered melted cheese with chorizo and instead of chunks of sausage, there were a few crumbs, almost like a garnish. Too expensive for a grilled cheese. Server was sympathetic but made no effort to alert manager about my dissatisfaction.
                            Acapulcos is ok but bland. You want good Mexican, go to TX, Calif. or even Chicago.

                            1. I am originally from Los Angeles and am having an extremely tough time finding Mexican food in the outer reaches (like Billerica where we live). Have found some interesting stuff down in Waltham and moderately OK in Lexington and Arlington, but something that is worth repeat visits has been a tough find. We have been to Casa Blanca a couple times (off 3 north at the 129 junction) and but thas has more to do with proximity than anything else. Wednesdays they have mariachi which is fun and I couldn't turn my nose up at the Cadillacs.
                              It's been really tough to find a place that even has a decent salsa.
                              I have taken to making my own carnitas or carne asada on Saturdays for college football, but my wife and dog can only take so much. Buying a decent tortilla outside of Waltham has been a challenge too.
                              Any advice for the newcomer would be greatly appreciated.

                              7 Replies
                              1. re: Keith15

                                I empathize with you my friend from California. I am also originally from San Jose and San Diego and I have been disappointed many times by Mexican recommendations here. There are decent places here but nothing so awesomely cheap (nor even expensive) yet so good that's worth craving for. There are no $1 tacos al pastor here. The baja-style fish tacos here are a joke. The carne asada burritos here are nothing like what you're used to at those 24-hrs drive thru or roach coach. Accept it and find something else to crave.

                                1. re: joebloe

                                  hear, hear! why must we tread over this ground again and again? why is it shocking to anyone that the mexican food here in boston is sub-par? when i lived in seattle (well, tacoma) i never expected to find decent clamcakes and baked beans on a menu there. (that i cant find them here is appalling enough). oh wait! lets get the best philly cheese steak in portland, oregon. your better off trying to find good Alentejana in nova scotia. you can try to satisfy the craving, but dont be surprised when the poutine you ordered in nebraska is not earth shattering.

                                  1. re: hyde

                                    I agree with you completely. I am honestly being helpful in letting our new transplant from LA know and accept the inevitable so he don't waste time and money looking for something that don't exist.

                                2. re: Keith15

                                  I highly recommend La Carreta (http://www.lacarretamex.com) in Nashua, NH. The food is delicious, lots of authentic dishes. The chile rellenos are the best we've found anywhere in the area. Service is fast (and very friendly), even when it's packed. Huge tequila selection, great margs. Well worth the trip.

                                  They have locations in Derry and Manchester NH as well, but Nashua is closest to us so we've never been to either of them.

                                  1. re: carpebeerium

                                    I agree with carpebeerium, La Carreta in Nashua is worth trying. The dining area can get very busy. We always ask to be seated at one of the booths. The service is faster if your seated in the dining area, so if you want to linger I would suggest grabbing a high-top table in the bar. I have heard a couple people from California give it good reviews, I'm sure they were not comparing it to their favorite place back in California, but I do know that La Carreta is where they will go for Mexican if they don't want to drive to the Boston or Waltham area.

                                  2. re: Keith15

                                    Not too far from Billerica is Mi Mexico Lindo in Methuen. Not as good as some of the excellent taquerias in Waltham, but just as good if not better than what you found in Lexington and Arlington. And much closer for an easy weeknight out.

                                    1. re: Keith15

                                      I lived in Santa Monica a couple of years ago and also live in Billerica now (don't ask haha) and I am forever on a search for authentic Mexican after growing up on the real deal with family in AZ and then living in CA.
                                      The most authentic that I have found, thus far in New England, is Taqueria Mexico in Waltham (also mentioned above in an earlier post). You won't find Baja style fish tacos there but otherwise, you will not be disappointed. It's the polar opposite of fancy but a friend brought me there last weekend and I've been craving it ever since! It's definitely tucked away on a side street but totally worth finding. They even had really good Horchata too!

                                    2. You'll find that it has moved to Nagog Park in Acton. It's in same strip mall as Scupper Jacks.

                                      1. Zocalo Cocina Mexicana in Arlington. Same people that own Olé in Cambridge.

                                        1. I agree, with Keith, after living in Tucson & LA for over a dozen years, I have never found truly excellent Mexican on the East coast. including a number of years in NYC. But in my years away (I just moved back a few months ago)I also always craved Chinese from Ho Yeun Ting in chinatown or Grand Chow Chow, or way back to House of Toy & Henry's for soup! even though I think all have closed , Italian from the North End, Brigham's hot fudge, etc. Each area has its strong points I save my Mexican cravings for when i go beck to LA and visit, then I hit every roach coach and dive I love that has truly great food! Here I am still reveling in the flavors I missed for so long.

                                          1. Daniela's has indeed moved from Rt 27/Main Street in Acton to Nagog Hill, and the food in the new location is positively disgusting. The old location was near our house, so it was a default Friday night meal and it was generally okay as long as you stayed away from certain items on the menu.

                                            We've been twice to the new location and will never go back. The salsa was thin and off-tasting and the chips stale. The ground beef quesadilla was greasy and the cheese was separating on the plate. The chicken mole enchiladas were revolting - burned mole, dry brown chicken, beans that tasted rancid and overcooked rice. This was not food that tasted bad - this was bad food. We stopped by Roche Bros on the way home for chips and dip - seriously.

                                            Daniela's Tacorito
                                            208 Main St, Acton, MA 01720

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: Valyn

                                              You're not wrong. I tried to be less harsh above, but really, you're not wrong.

                                              The options in the Nagog Mall are pretty bare, though. I think the chow pick of the lot is probably Il Forno's pizza, which can actually be very good.

                                              1. re: chickendhansak

                                                We were bummed when they moved even though the food was fair to middling because it was super convenient and had a nice neighborhood vibe. Now we're doubly bummed because the food quality has declined so much.

                                                We'll do Crossroads for the occasional Saturday lunch, and I do like Il Forno's pizza, so it's not a total loss.

                                            2. There's a new restaurant opening in January in the old Bickford's on Rte. 30 in Framingham, part of a New Hampshire chain, La Carreta Mexican. Anyone been to the other locations?


                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: bear

                                                Look above you, about 8 posts. There are positive reviews for the Nashua outpost.

                                              2. Has anyone been to the Aztec in Framingham? I've driven by a bunch of times, but never been in.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: nsenada

                                                  a couple of years ago - it was very fresh. well made dishes - not tex-mex

                                                  1. re: nsenada

                                                    Yes, Aztec is one of the better options out there. Nice, family run place with very fresh yummy food.