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Tucson AZ -- Mexican Food

jmbabb Jan 22, 2011 06:10 PM

I will be spending about 5 days in Tuscan at a training and an looking for some real Mexican restaurants (translation - no cheddar cheese on the premises). I will be staying in the University area, but after living 20+ years in Texas and now living in CT., I am willing to walk 1mile+/-, rent a taxi and for something special rent a car and drive!!

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  1. JK Grence the Cosmic Jester RE: jmbabb Jan 22, 2011 10:07 PM

    First off: search the board. The specialty of Tucson *is* Mexican food, you can't swing a cat without hitting a Mexican restaurant.

    Second: Don't fear shredded yellow cheese! The primary style of Mexican food in Tucson is Sonoran. Flour tortillas (made with lard) and yellow cheese are staple ingredients.

    Those said, in a nutshell: Cafe Poca Cosa downtown is fantastic, and has no yellow cheese. Go for lunch.

    Cafe Poca Cosa
    110 E Pennington St, Tucson, AZ 85701

    1 Reply
    1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
      EWSflash RE: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Feb 4, 2011 07:32 PM

      Good advice. People's tastes vary wildly these days when it comes to Mexican food. Some of t he Sonoran places have a tendency to literally bury a dish with yellow cheese which is way too much of a muchness, but a tendency to the way folks like it here. I like the quesos blancos in their many disguises, but JK is right- don't fear the cheeses! (vague 1970s Wishbone Ash reference)

    2. Tillman RE: jmbabb Mar 12, 2011 06:04 AM

      Just a quick note re my long-time favorite, Mi Nidito in South Tucson.

      There have been comments (here & elsewhere) that M Nidito has gone downhill -- so we didn't go last trip.

      This time, lunch at around 2 PM. No wait and food as good as ever. I had the birria plate (~$11), delicately flavored of cinnamon and as good as ever. Note that Sonoran birria is usually beef (as here). My wife had shredded-beef flautas, which she also pronounced as good as ever. So, Mi Nidito goes back on the "every trip" list, with Vivace.

      Next stop: Chef Alias meaty Bosnian!

      Cheers -- Pete Tillman

      Mi Nidito Cafe
      1813 S 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85713

      1. e
        estone888 RE: jmbabb Apr 1, 2011 02:56 PM

        I've never understood the love of Cafe Poca Cosa - I think it is truly boring. Almost everything they serve comes out looking and tasting like a salad - a not particularly good salad at that.

        My three favorite places for Mexican food in Tucson are:

        Poco & Mom's - 1060 S. Kolb - New Mexico style, great breakfasts, great green chile, very worthwhile.

        Teresa's Mosaic Cafe - 2455 N. Silverbell - also great breakfast, good everything else, nice comfortable place - wonderful fresh made flour tortillas.

        El Indio - 3355 S. 6th - a funky cafe on the other side of Interstate 10 - fantastic chile verde or chile colorado.

        Teresa's Mosaic Cafe
        2456 N Silver Mosaic Dr, Tucson, AZ 85745

        Poco & Mom's Restaurant
        1060 S Kolb Rd, Tucson, AZ 85710

        4 Replies
        1. re: estone888
          EWSflash RE: estone888 Apr 1, 2011 07:31 PM

          I have wanted to love poco & mom's and I tend to find them lacking in the finesse category. Too much cheese, too much sauce, otherwise really good food.
          teresa's- I've only eaten there A couple of times but it's always ben spectacularly good solid Sonoran food
          Haven't been to the Poca cosa in many years, but boy howdy was it ever good- very different from what we expect here in Tucson, but wonderful. .

          1. re: EWSflash
            mrbigshotno.1 RE: EWSflash Apr 9, 2011 02:02 PM

            I was in Tucson for the month of March, was down on So. 4th and found the old Crossroads has a lunch buffet, really good! Outrageously good chicken mole, AYCE.

            1. re: mrbigshotno.1
              EWSflash RE: mrbigshotno.1 May 6, 2011 02:53 PM

              I can't believe i've never eaten at the Crossroads. What else do they have? They used to be big into mariscos, or at least camarones if I remember right

              1. re: EWSflash
                mrbigshotno.1 RE: EWSflash May 8, 2011 12:46 PM

                Yep seafood and regular Sonoran fare, cozy old time feel to the place.

        2. s
          Saguaro RE: jmbabb Apr 10, 2011 07:45 AM

          The best Sonoran in Tucson comes from the trucks, El Nene and Angela's are my favorites. I like Parilla Suiza which you may like because they do in fact avoid the cheese and sauce routine.

          1. p
            personalcheffie RE: jmbabb Jun 7, 2011 01:08 PM

            Alfonso's Carnitas Jalisco is excellent, just a block or two west of Crossroads, which also has excellent food. Xochimilco right down the street from Crossroads is also good, but haven't been down that way in a while and don't know if they are still there.

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