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Nov 23, 2009 02:49 PM

Desperately seeking cheap Mexican *in* Boston...that's not Anna's etc.

Oh, dear. I am dining with two friends tomorrow night, one of whom is insisting on Mexican and will not pay more than $15-$20 tip and tax included for his meal. But he doesn't want a takeout place.
The other friend is staying in the Back Bay and doesn't want to stray too far from her hotel.
I am the unfortunate soul charged with feeding these folks. Ideas?

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  1. How authentic are we talking? The places that come to mind and would barely meet your budgetary requirements are Cottonwood, Rattlesnake, and Cactus Club. I think the food at Rattlesnake is the best out of the three. Get the nachos.

    1. You might consider La Verdad over by Fenway. Easy to spend more than $20, certainly, but also easy to eat cheap there.

      2 Replies
      1. re: BJK

        Actually, La Verdad wouldn't be too expensive at all tonight thanks to $1 tacos!

      2. Boca Grande in Kenmore Square. Not everyones favorite but they do have good ,cheap Mexican food and I happen to love their burritos.

        1. Picante in Central Square would satisfy the cheap guy, and it's a straight run up Mass Ave on the Route 1 bus for the homebody. It's not great, but it's not awful, and you're not gonna get great with such parameters.

          1 Reply
          1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps

            I agree, given the parameters. My tip is: stay away from their burritos unless you like starch bombs. Their tacos are okay, but very gringo with lettuce and tomato. Tuesday is tamale day at Picante, and their chicken tamales are really very tasty, especially with the salsa verde on top. The pork tamales would be okay except that they trim all the fat off the carnitas (oh the humanity!) so they're pretty dry.

            The other notable thing on their menu is the tortilla soup - it can be inconsistent, but when it's on, it's really very good.

            Other notes: When they cook their black beans enough, they're pretty good. Sometimes they're a little undercooked, which is sad. And the salsa bar is always helpful for adding taste. I believe they do serve beer, if that helps.

          2. not actually boston but if your able to travel, taqueria el amigo,196 Willow St Waltham, MA 02453
            is dirt cheap and quite authentic. its not far from russo's if you want to combine trips.

            1 Reply