Food & wine
Mexican Tacos: The Best Eateries Worldwide
Where can you get the best and most authentic Mexican food on your trip? Here's an insider guide you'll want to bring along on your next trip.
After many spending years outside Mexico, in the United States and Norway, chef and restaurant owner José Standal Ambriz suddenly had a craving for real Mexican food. Just like his mother and grandmother made.
"Almost everyone in the world confuses Tex-Mex with Mexican cuisine. It's completely wrong, Tex-Mex is from Texas," José said.
Background: José shares his authentic Mexican dishes
He runs Jose's Taco and Quesedilla Bar, together with his husband, Torgeir Ambriz Standal. It's a place where real authentic street tacos are made, as they have been done for hundreds of years - that is, with corn tortillas, marinated meat, beans, vegetables, salsa and last, but not least, guacamole. The restaurant also serves plenty more Mexican cuisine such as buttios, quesadillas, nachos, and salads containing meat marinated according to José's own "secret" recipes.
Having spent his childhood in Colima, Mexico and several years in Los Angeles, and now living in Oslo, the capital of Norway, José has eaten and made a lot of Mexican food in his life. Who better to guide us to the best Mexican tacos around the world?
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Here are the world's top six eateries for Mexican tacos, according to José:
"I really La Neta City in Stockholm, the capital of Sweden.
The chain has three different locations in Stockholm, as well as a restaurant in Copenhagen in Denmark.
"La neta" is Mexican slang for "the real deal" and that's exactly what you get there — tacos and quesadillas made in the Mexican way and served in an informal atmosphere.
In Mexico, a taqueria is an eatery where all types of customers, from all age groups and backgrounds, meet. And this is the idea behind La Neta too, an unpretentious spot with reasonable prices. Here you cannot book a table in advance, and the restaurant only accepts drop-in guests.
Mexico and the United States
"In general, i.e., all over the world, the very best tacos are the ones that are prepared and eaten on the street," says José.
"In Mexico and Los Angeles in the US, I can recommend all the fantastic food trucks and little vendors who make fantastic street tacos. These are often prepared the way the families of the people who run these places have made them for generations," says José.
What makes these tacos stand out? They use fresh produce, lots of fat, and a lot of love.
"The tacos here are made without regard to healthy or unhealthy, vegetarian or meat, gluten or lactose. They are simply made to be tasty and juicy."
Los Angeles, USA
Mexican food has conquered Los Angeles, and it is therefore difficult to choose the right place in the taco jungle.
"But one of my favourites is Angel's Tijuana Tacos. Here, you get really juicy tacos.
This is not a bricks and mortar restaurant, but street tacos that can be found at several locations in L. A. The chain is doing so well that you'll find stands everywhere from North Hollywood to Long Beach. Here, you get lots of food, plenty of meat, plenty of vegetables, and plenty of sauce.
There is a lot of everything, and the taste and texture are authentic.
"Of course, we have to choose our own restaurant, José's Taco and Quesadilla Bar.
The restaurant is located in the Grünerløkka district, more specifically Markveien in Oslo. The neighbourhood is hip and trendy, and is full of restaurants, cafes, and vintage and interior design shops.
Jose's has a relaxing atmosphere and is staffed by people from Mexico, Argentina, Spain, Norway, and many other places around the world. Here, you get tacos and quesadillas in true Mexican fashion – and with José's secret guacamole recipe. In addition, there is a separate children's menu for the niños.
"Another good taco place in Oslo is Coyo."
It's located on Sørenga right by the Oslo fjord in the capital city, close to two city beaches and the MUNCH Museum. Coyo has a Mexican chef, and the menu includes tacos with marinated pork, tacos with slow-cooked ox cheeks, and deep-fried tacos made from sea bass. The restaurant also has its own bar.
"I can really recommend Terraza Trapiche , which is idyllically situated in the middle of Colima City. "
This is the city where José was born and raised.
"There is a very nice view from the terrace towards the town square and the church. Wonderful old buildings. This is a place that gives you a real Mexican city feeling, with fantastically good food and, not least very, good drinks!"
San Francisco, USA
San Francisco – the metropolis full of history, technology, exciting museums, steep slopes, trendy neighbourhoods, and iconic trams – is also known for being a food and wine city.
Here, you can find several hole in the walls serving authentic Mexican food.
One such place is Tacolicious. Here, there are juicy and tasty tacos, which are perfecting for sharing with the whole family – regardless of age. The atmosphere is lively but relaxed. You can order a wide variety of dishes, such as chicken tinga, traditional carnitas, guajillo-braised beef or what the restaurant itself recommends – marina girl salad — and share the whole meal.
Drinks for Mexican tacos
An authentic Mexican meal also deserves drinks to accompany the long traditions. You have several options:
Spirits that are produced around the city of Tequila, in the state of Jalisco, Mexico.
Mexican soda that has refreshing flavours including lime, mango, guava, and many others.
Some famous brands are Negra Modelo, Corona, Dos Equis, Pacifico, and Bohemia.
Agua de Jamaica (hibiscus tea)
A drink common in Mexico, which is, so to speak, flavoured water. The drink is made from the red flower hibiscus. The leaves are dried, boiled in water, and mixed with sugar and ice cubes.
Tex-Mex is a food tradition from Texas in the United States inspired by Mexican cuisine. The word is used for several forms of cultural expression in the region, including music, but is most commonly used for food. The abbreviation is said to have first been used for the Texas-Mexican railway between northern Mexico and Texas.
Mexican food is one of the world's most widespread cuisines. Traditional Mexican cuisine was declared protected intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO in 2010.
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