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Good Mexican Restaurants in Indianapolis?

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I am seeking recommendations for good Mexican restaurants in the Indianapolis area, especially in the northwest or north part of town. In particular, I'd appreciate hearing what makes the restaurant worth recommending.

I don't mind eating burritos and tacos, if prepared well. For example, if a hard-shell taco, the corn tortilla should be fried, instead of serving on of those awful pre-formed tortillas like you find in supermarkets. Also, good salsa is always appreciated.

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  1. As far as the northwest side of town is concerned, I'd recommend Pancho's Taqueria (7023 N Michigan Rd. - http://www.panchosmexicantaqueria.com/) The food itself is pretty good, but the highlight is the self-serve salsa bar, which contains 5 or 6 different types of salsa that are all very good. My favorite is their light-green "salsa yucateca", which has a creamy rich consistency unlike most salsas available at restaurants in Indianapolis.

    If this part of town still counts as "northwest", I'd also recommend the taqueria located inside the "Carneceria Guanajuato III" at 5210 West Pike Plaza Rd. It's located inside a large Mexican supermarket that also includes a very busy and large meat counter, so the meat that is used is always very fresh. The menu here is pretty basic: tortas, tacos, burritos, and a few other things. Everything is quite good, but I'm a fan of their barbacoa (pretty much a lamb pot roast) that they serve on weekends. It can be a bit oily, but the taste and texture is fantastic.

    Both are order and pay at the counter and then get a number type places.

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    Pancho's Taqueria
    7023 Michigan Rd, Indianapolis, IN 46268

    1. Check out http://www.indyethnicfood.com/. You can search both by cuisine and location, and many Mexican restaurants have been reviewed. I haven't yet been to one I love here, but I haven't been to many.

      1 Reply
      1. re: RobinLT

        Thanks for the link RobinLT!

        Thanks to you (and the link) I'm going to try the Mexican place down the street from my office.

      2. I second that of CONDIMENTALITY'S recs: Pancho's Taqueria and Guanajuato for the best MEXICAN (non-americanized) mexican in Indy. I've been to the Guanjuato on 30th and Shadeland and recently discovered one on the SW side of downtown. About a mile west of Lucas Oil Stadium on Oliver Avenue. Both very good. Love the 30th and Shadeland Market. There is also the trendy Taco Truck (I believe West Coast Tacos) and I hear very tasty.

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        Pancho's Taqueria
        7023 Michigan Rd, Indianapolis, IN 46268

        1 Reply
        1. re: napolean

          I have to agree with napolean and Condimentality, Pancho's (which is conveniently located across the street from me!) and Guanajuato are both fantastic. I am in LOVE with the yukateca sauce. In fact, my family often has margarita night and I have to stop there to pick up a vat of the green, spicey goodness.

          I just had the pleasure of trying West Coast Tacos this passed weekend. I had already eaten dinner, but ordered one to try it after hearing such great things. The rumors are true! You can "like" them on facebook and they update where they will be and what kind of tacos they will be serving. I believe they are somewhere different for lunch and dinner every day.

          I'm now starting to plan where I'll be having mexican food tomorrow (after all, friday nights are magarita night!)

        2. There's so much new and good Mexican food in Indianapolis over the last couple of years. I would second all of the recommendations here so far, especially Guanajuato III, but there are others. Guanajuato II (31st and Shadeland) may still be my favorite taqueria, and the lines there for lunch bear that out. I am surprised that no one has recommended El Sol de Tala on East Washington, an Indianapolis standard. Not everything here is great, but the pork dishes, the plantains, the beans, and their famous guacamole are definitely worth it. 3-in-1 is a Salvadoran, Mexican, and barbecue joint on the near Westside that has a limited menu, but it's good. I love the fried tamale, as well as the sweet ones, and I love the pupusas. Taqueria el Maguey on West 38th in the old Kroger plaza is very good, and it's one of the few places to get tacos al pastor. Just make sure you order the Mexican guac here--the other is pureed. One recent trend that is really taking off is the torta, and Tortas Guicho Dominguez y El Cubanito in Fountain Square has some great ones, all named after Latin pop stars. The Cuban is HUGE. I may actually like the ones at Super Torta at 10th & Main in Speedway a bit better though. They's a litte moister in terms of their fillings, and the bread is crisper. But both are good. I also like the seafood dishes at El Puerto de San Blas. These just scratch the surface of the Mexican options available in the city. Just beware of the places that bring chips and have frozen margaritas and such.

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          El Sol
          507 4th Ave, Rochelle, IL 61068

          El Puerto
          4955 S Emerson Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46203

          1. The best Mexican I've had is at the Tamale Place: http://www.thetamaleplace.com/

            They started their business making fresh tortillas and discovered that Indy didn't have the market to support that, so they segued into making phenomenally delicious tamales (which are also quite large) as well as tacos, etc. It used to be takeout only but there are a few tables inside now. Everything is fresh, well-prepared, AND cheap.

            The full range of everything but the tamales is available all day, but they only make certain tamales on a daily basis and they can run out of tamales early if lunch is busy. It's easy to get to from 465 on the west side.

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            Tamale Place
            5242 Rockville Rd, Indianapolis, IN 46224