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best mexican food in NOLA

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I realize there is an older thread about Mexican food in the area, but I really think this restaurant deserves it's own post. 'Salsas por el Lago', located at 124 Lake Marina Drive, was incredible. The place is owned by a couple and made everything fresh for us. The cost was unbelievably reasonable and the food was top-notch. This was very authentic Mexican food, not Tex-Mex nor an Americanized version. The chicarones, pastor, carne desebrada, camerones and enchiladas were all delicious. They made the chips fresh when we got there and you absolutely have to try the 6 or so seven salsas they have. We ordered the mild (which was fresh and good), but we also got the 'hurricane' which was an amazing hot, green salsa.

I just want to see this restaurant make it. In talking to the owners they said they've been open for a year and a half. Right now it's a hassle to get up there with the construction going on along Lakeview, but totally worth the trip.

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  1. I'll give them a try before going to Da Track on Friday afternoon

    1. Sounds interesting thanks for the heads up.

      1. Thanks so much for this! Being south Texas natives, my family and I are constantly on the prowl for Mexican, both the authentic and the Tex- variety... I will definitely let them know about this place so we can make an excursion. Few things are more worth a drive to Lakeview than the prospect of 7 different salsas to choose from! Yum.

        1. What would you recommend that a first-time visitor order if she really likes Tex-Mex but has had limited opportunities to eat "real" Mexican food? I'm pretty adventurous but a little conservative when it comes to unusual meats.

          1. We stopped in this spot while cycling about 2-3 wks. ago. Absolutely agree: good people, good food. Even caught some sort of Tex-Mex surf music on the juke.

            1. Interesting thread. Mexico is a very large country, with mucho diversity from a culinary standpoint and encompassing many differ cuisines. What "State" are they representing here?

              What is "authentic" in Jalisco, might be unheard of in Veracruz. It is like talking about fried chicken in Indiana va Mississippi. Same general protein, but totally different dishes.

              Going back many years, Chapanlandia (Guatamalan at heart, but South/Central American by coverage) was great. The menu covered every possible location around the Caribbean, with even a hint of Spanish influence. El Chico's (a Dallas mini-chain) did a great job with a variety of Mexican cuisine, though they did have a Tex-Mex influence (not a bad thing in my experience). Last, when the Mayan chef was cooking at Castillo's in the FQ, these were some of the ultimate dishes in NOLA.

              Just curious, as I have some very fond memories of those. Also, living now in PHX, about all we get is Sonoran Mexican. This is not bad, but I grew up with Tex-Mex preps, and then those from both Jalisco and Veracruz. Each is different.

              TIA for the clarifications,


              1 Reply
              1. re: Bill Hunt

                When I was in New Orleans last March there was still an advertisment for Castillos painted on the side of a building on the CBD side of Canal Street although it closed a few years ago. I get weary of the "authentic" mexican food versus tex-mex discussion. All food is "authentic" to me. All food is usually some kind of hybrid. Tex-mex is just as "authenitc" as food made from recent Mexican immigrants. There have been a lot of discussions about this subject on other Chowhound boards. I usually do not eat mexican food in New Orleans because it is so plentiful in Oklahoma City. I always wanted to try Castillo's but it closed before I got the chance. Are Tamatillo's or El Gato Negro still open? Are there still any Tex-mex chains in the suburbs such as El Chico or Tia' still? I usually like the salsa at Tex-mex places better than "authentic" mexican places. I have always liked El Chico's salsa.

                Bigray in Ok