If you’re looking for the best Mexican food in the country, New York City might not be the first place that comes to mind. After all, New York is nowhere close to the United States and Mexico border. The Big Apple, however, boasts a plethora of famous restaurants and well-kept secrets offering amazing Mexican food in NYC. This article on the best Mexican restaurants in NYC will explore top Mexican restaurants in NYC serving mouth-watering Mexican dishes.
NYC is one of the best destinations in the world to sample wonderful cuisine from various cultures and regions. It offers some of the best Mexican restaurants, so whether you want an al pastor burrito or a plate of arroz with pollo, you’ll find something delicious.
Best Mexican Restaurants in Nyc
Where should you go in such a large metropolis if you want real, home-style tacos for lunch and a high-end dining experience for dinner? Not to worry, our list of 15 best Mexican restaurants in NYC has everything you need to find the best restaurant that suits you.
Mechelin-starred Claro is one of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC. It shines on Third Avenue, where it prepares its own cheese, masa, mole, chorizo, and tortillas for its seasonal Oaxacan tasting menus.
Tostada de remolacha (beets), uni empanadas, and churros or chocolate mole cake for dessert are all part of the $72 four-course evening.
We recommend the accompanying mezcal flight ($54); brunch offers slightly cheaper prix-fixe alternatives ($45 for food; $38 for drinks). Claro features a tranquil terrace in the back, in addition to its bar and dining room.
Oxomoco’s wood-fired oven produces fantastic fish, barbacoa, and “chorizo” tacos made of beets, not to mention one of the best steaks you have ever had in any steakhouses, making Oxomoco one the best Mexican restaurants in NYC for delicious Mexican dishes.
Its frozen drinks are amazing and there are lots of other cocktails, wine, and beer options available.
Enrique Olvera‘s beautiful restaurant is among the best Mexican restaurants in NYC. Tacos feature only once on the menu, in an unusually substantial amount of duck carnitas.
However, Olvera’s single-corn tortillas appear regularly, beginning as a gratis starter and continuing with entrées elsewhere.
4. Taqueria Ramirez
Almost everything inTaqueria Ramirez is fashioned after iconic locations in Mexico City, furnished with colorful plastic plates, a choricera and a CDMX made comal.
Their tacos range from shredded suadero and longaniza to al pastor with vibrant porky juices, which all cost $4.
The suadero simmers for three hours, allowing the lower belly cut of beef to break down. But our favorite taco is the tripa, which has so little chewy hardness that it could be mistaken for cow stomach lining if not for the strong flavor.
The restaurant only seats approximately ten people, so plan on finding a location to stand outside while you plot the ideal time to return for more tacos.
5. Casa Enrique
Casa Enrique, one of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC, is a Michelin-starred Mexican cantina in Queens’ Long Island City. Their menu, created by chef Cosme Aguilar, explores specialties from across the country, including classic Mexican meals and more adventurous dishes.
Some of their most popular dishes are chile relleno and de pollo with mole de piaxtla enchiladas, both of which offer a modern twist on traditional recipes.
6. La Barca Cantina
What could be more enjoyable than a floating Mexican restaurant? La Barca Cantina, one of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC, is a waterfront restaurant that serves some of the most amazing cocktails and Mexican food in town.
This three-level boat sails off Pier 81 and invites visitors from all around the city for excellent meals and beautiful Hudson River vistas. Their cocktails are robust and excellent and their meal options make the experience worthwhile.
Tony’s Campechano tacos with roasted scallions, beef, and pork are their most famous item!
If you’re searching for a go-to brunch or dinner spot in NYC that serves the best Mexican food, Aldama is the place to go.
This restaurant is one of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC and is known for its welcoming atmosphere, delectable Mexican street food classics, and South American specialty meals. Aldama has both indoor and outdoor seats, as well as a huge bar area.
8. Casa Carmen
Casa Carmen is the only spot outside of Mexico where you can sample some of chef Carmen Ramirez Degollado’s special dishes from her El Bajo restaurant empire.
This upmarket Tribeca restaurant specializes in traditional Mexican cuisine served in a room with earthy decor that makes you feel like you’re at a hacienda-style resort.
Order the refreshing ceviche with tostadas, shredded duck, and chicken drowned in wonderfully bitter and sweet mole de Xico created with only 37 ingredients.
On your way out, you’ll see a large communal table that is large enough to host a council of supervillains, so keep this location in mind the next time you need to organize a large group supper.
9. Casa Azul
This Park Slope restaurant which, by the way, is one of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC, is named after Frida Kahlo’s iconic home and is run by a close-knit family from Oaxaca.
While the menu isn’t huge, that’s by design – there’s a clear emphasis here on doing things properly and with love. The homemade daily tamales are always a terrific idea, as are the tequila flights, which come in a variety of carefully picked alternatives.
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10. La Morada
Forget “Mexican-inspired” and “modern twists” meals; if you’re looking for authentic Oaxacan cuisine, La Morada is the place to go which of course is one of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC.
Entering La Morado feels like entering an authentic Mexican taqueria, with diverse decor, deep purple walls, and modest seating.
La Morada’s dining area is decorated with pictures of the community, a small library, and social activism stickers. It’s evident that this family-run business is passionate about its food and its employees.
11. Taqueria Sinaloense
While much Mexican food in New York originates from the south, Taqueria Sinaloense draws from Sinaloa, a coastal state in the northwest.
Taqueria Sinaloense specializes in tacos, such as tacos de canasta (“basket tacos”) packed with grilled cheese and chorizo and put in oil to keep them fresh, which are frequently sold by vendors and tacos gobernador, which are lusciously stuffed with shrimp and fresh chiles.
12. Taqueria Al Pastor
Taqueria Al Pastor is the best Mexican restaurant in NYC to get affordable Mexican food. Street tacos and tostadas cost only $5-$6 and are packed high with delectable ingredients such as fish, fried pork, or onions, salsa, mushrooms, and fresh cilantro.
Taqueria el Pastor is ideal for a quick lunch or snack of the best Mexican food in New York City. Taqueria Al Pastor is mostly a “quick bites” type of eatery that serves cuisine to go.
Nonetheless, the interior is beautifully adorned with hand-painted Mexican tiles, string lights, and colorful tables. Their no-frills menu is displayed above. Many locals flock here to get a true sense of Mexico.
Añejo has everything you need to satisfy your desire for nice Mexican food. From shrimp tacos to pineapple chipotle guacamole, and empanadas, this is an amazing place to enjoy dinner or a quick bite of tapas before heading out for the night.
Like many restaurants in NYC, Añejo also serves some interesting twists, like cheeseburger fundido and fried squash blossoms.
When compared to other NYC restaurants, Aejo has a large dining room, with tables wide enough to accommodate large groups looking for delicious Mexican food.
With exposed brick walls, ceiling elements, and wood floors, and a magnificent full bar, the overall environment feels open and natural to the city.
If you’re looking for one of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC to wow a loved one, Empellón is the place to go.
This Michelin-starred restaurant, led by chef Alex Stupek, is known for its fantastic contemporary takes on classic dishes like octopus smokey cashew salsa, tacos, and the dessert avocado.
Empellón is one of the poshest venues in NYC to get nice Mexican food. Inside, there’s a spacious, elegant two floors dining room with ceramic artwork and a full bar. Visitors to Empellón can dress casually.
15. Toloache 50
When looking for the best Mexican food in New York City, Times Square may appear to be an unlikely location.
Toloache 50, situated just off West 50th Street, is the ideal place to grab a bite of great Mexican food after visiting Rockefeller Center or attending a Broadway musical.
Toloache 50 is an elegant restaurant that is ideal for a classy date or special occasion. Inside are beautiful chandeliers, tile mosaic walls, high ceilings, and lots of seats inside, outside, and upstairs.
It’s possible you’ve heard that New York City lacks good Mexican food, but that’s a fallacy. The truth is that delicious Mexican food can be found all throughout the city.
In this piece, we have highlighted some of the best Mexican restaurants in NYC you are sure to find mouth-watering Mexican dishes.