Best Mexican Restaurants in Los Angeles
With its proximity to the border, Los Angeles has a staggering selection of delicious Mexican restaurants—everything from taco stands to refined dining rooms, authentic recipes to modern interpretations, and Yucatecan to Oaxacan regional cuisine. These tried-and-true spots are a sampling of the very best.
Celeb chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger put a light, modern spin on Mexican classics at this hip, urban cantina. Gourmet preparations emphasize fruits, veggies, and herbs—it’s the kind of place where you can have a fresh pomegranate margarita with your chipotle–Dungeness crab enchiladas.
Ensconced in the Mercado la Paloma food hall, this quick-service eatery brings the Yucatán to the USC area. Favorites like the citrusy-hot pollo pibil (tender chicken legs cooked in banana leaves) and the Sunday-only lechón (slow-roasted baby pig) are so authentic that you’ll be surprised there’s no Mayan pyramid around the corner.
Holy mole: this family-run Oaxacan eatery is a shrine to mole sauce (the choice of red, yellow, green, and black complements the restaurant’s bright interior). Have yours with everything from chilaquiles and tlayudas (Mexican pizza), to simmered chicken and pork, to tamales and enchiladas. Don’t miss the encyclopedic selection of mezcal.
What began as a taco stand at the Farmers Market has expanded into a local chainlet of full-service restaurants serving an array of exceptionally flavorful regional Mexican specialties. Hop the South of the Border map from Jalisco pozole to Guerrero ceviche to Michoacán carnitas tacos while you contemplate the life-size lotería card artwork (and your good fortune). Additional locations in Studio City, Santa Monica, and Westlake Village.
Attention, burrito lovers: this tiny Los Feliz hut has earned not only a local cult following but also a prestigious James Beard Award. You’ll go loco for the stuffed-and-smothered “crazy burrito,” beefy carne asada tacos, and banana-leaf tamales filled with cochinita pibil (succulent pork), served only on Saturdays.