10 Best Mexican Restaurants in Boston: From Authentic Fare to Tex-Mex Treats
By Jessica Polizzotti
Boston Local Expert
Boston is home to many great Mexican restaurants. Locals are loyal to old favorites. You'll never be disappointed by a meal at Tu y Yo where the tacos are sidelined in favor of the more traditional menu of home cooked favorites cooked slow to establish deep flavor profiles.
Tequila bars abound inside modern Mexican eateries like that of Papagayo where you'll enjoy the tacos and enchiladas with a freshly mixed margarita.
When your Mexican meal needs to be romantic, make your way to the Back Bay and score a table at Casa Romero. Here the vibe is low key and the crowd more subdued allowing for quiet conversations over plates of Mexican favorites.
If waterfront and Mexican musts then Temazcal is right for you. Here you can enjoy a seat along the edge of Bosotn Harbor while digging into their menu items.
Somerville is a hot spot for the cool crowd, and The Painted Burro fits right in. With a mix of high top tables, bar seating and low tables you'll enjoy a taco or two with your friends.
Allston's local dive, Lone Star Taco Bar is small in size but big in flavor. Tacos are the star at this taco bar, where you'll find your food coming out as its ready allowing you to order more as your meal progresses.
The best Mexican in the Boston area is quite the mix of style and scene; all the better for trying all 10best.
10 Anna's Taqueria
Anna's Taqueria serves the best burritos in Boston. The small dining spots are set up assembly line style and often have lines curling throughout the restaurant and out the door. A bargain under $10, you'll fill up on meat, veggies, rice and beans with all the toppings you please. Whether you want a burrito filled with the works, a lightly sauced taco or a crisply grilled quesadilla you'll be pleased by what you'll find at Anna's. Larger appetites (and those who prefer to to mix their foods together) will love the Mexican plate. Add a sweet drink and a plate of chips and guacamole to the mix and you'll have a full meal for here or to go. ((617) 227-8822)
Papagayo is the type of low key Mexican eatery where you'll find yourself eating too much because the food is just so good that you can't stop, and the atmosphere so inviting you don't want to leave. Set on Summer Street it is not going to jump out at you, you'll have to seek it out. And you'll be glad you did because along with good eats, Papagayo offers diners a Tequila bar that can't be beat. Order a Tex-Mex specialty and chat with friends while you drink a cocktail from their tequila bar. Sample something new, or enjoy an old favorite, Papagayo will not steer you wrong. (617-423-1000)
8 Rosa Mexicano
Rosa Mexicano may pack the crowds due to its location in the Seaport District, but customers return because of the stellar service, excellent eats and upbeat atmosphere. Enjoying a meal in this busy spot may require a wait, even during lunch, but a seat at the bar is just as pleasant as in the dining room. Their servers are not afraid to make a recommendation, that you should take because they know the menu well.The table-side guacamole is a must, as is the tuna ceviche and an order of tacos. The decor is more modern Mexican, think subdued tones. Pair their food with a specialty beverage or beer cocktail and you'll have a complete Mexican meal that you won't soon forget. (617-476-6122)
7 Olé Mexican Grill
Ole Mexican Grill is a festive spot with brightly colored walls covered with decorative masks and tables featuring tops of beautifully colored tiles. The menu is comprised mostly of traditional Mexican food with few tex-mex favorites mixed in. Enjoy one of their delicious stews, sample the more unusual selections like the roasted duck in mole sauce or enjoy a nice piece of meat like the pan seared carne asada. Fresh guacamole is prepared tableside and is the perfect blend of flavors. Top off your night with one of their special desserts and a drink from their well put together drink list to bring your meal to perfection. (617-492-4495)
Besito prepares Mexican cuisine with affection for Mexican tradition. Served to guests in an atmosphere that transports you to Mexico this is an imitate spot that offers big appeal. Close attention to Mexican culture sets Besito apart from other Mexican chains going as far as to deliver worry dolls to diners with their check. Besito's food is a mix of familiar dishes like their enchiladas de mole poblano, shredded chicken baked in mole poblano, queso fresco, cilantro onion. And those worth trying like the salmon manchamanteles, roasted salmon, plantains, pineapple pico de gallo, mole manchamanteles. Drinks are a must at Besito where their signature sangria is a hit, as is their tequila based take on the mojito. Dig into dessert or request a small bag of churros to go. (617-527-1155)
5 Temazcal Cantina
A meal at Boston's Temazcal is like a tropical escape. The floor to ceiling windows allow diners to take in the view anytime of year. While the creative menu, presented to guests on an iPad, not only explains the dishes being served, but also gives vibrant photos of what will arrive on your plate. You won't be disappointed by the food or the drinks, both of which are a pleasure to devour! If you want to linger after dinner at this hot spot, you can easily make your way from your table to the bar or dance to the music pumped throughout on weekends. (617 439-3502)
4 Lone Star Taco Bar
The Lone Star Taco Bar is a small spot that packs a big punch. Located in Boston's hip Allston/Brighton neighborhood, you'll find a well-composed menu of flavorful tacos that are anything but simple. The simple decor is purposeful and meaningful with a single star hanging within. From the moment you walk through their doors you'll feel welcome, as everyone from bartender to waiter will pop by to get you seated as soon as possible. Surprisingly, with so few tables you'll feel no pressure to finish up, but will instead be encouraged to linger longer over yet another michelda, or margarita. Aptly named this is a taco bar; their menu features several variations on the tasty street food of Mexico and Texas as well as a few other options like their rich and spicy chile con queso. Tacos are served on corn tortillas and filled for a few perfect bites at a good price. (617-782-8226)
3 Casa Romero
Casa Romero makes Mexican upscale. This small spot in an alley behind Newbury Street with a gorgeous seasonal patio is a romantic adventure in Mexican dining. Casa Romero has a reputation for pleasing guests with their fine food. Traditional dishes are served in their beautiful dining room that will transport you to Mexico. Here you can sample their specialties which include a large selection of vegetarian favorites that would be loved by those who eat meat as well as those who don't. Their Sangria is nothing short of spectacular and the service is well-trined to provide you with a top notch experience. (617-536-4341)
2 The Painted Burro
The modern Mexican decor of this happening Davis Square restaurant creates a cozy feel that welcomes diners to linger with one of their interesting tequila based cocktails like the refreshing cucumber margarita. You'll find groups of friends hanging at the bar while waiting for tables, or just for drinks as this neighborhood spot has great appeal. Regulars often come for brunch when the Mexican inspired menu includes creative tacos, and breakfast items. Included are the over the top vaquero hash: a combination of 2 fried eggs, achiote-braised pork, potatoes, kale, roasted poblano, onion rajas, & chipotle mayo that will dazzle your taste buds. Dinner at the Painted Burro gives diners a bite of creative Mexican with items like duck quesadilla. (617.776.005)
1 Tu Y Yo
When you're seeking real Mexican cuisine, make your way to Tu y Yo where you'll be hard pressed to find a taco or enchilada on their menu. Straying from the typical Tex-Mex specialties found at most Mexican restaurants, Tu y Yo has a menu filled with home-style Mexican dishes, made from scratch. Get a taste of home cooking with appetizers like empandads and tamales. Enjoy a made from scratch meal of meat, seafood or vegetables like the napoles con credo, tinga poblano, bisteca "Mama Evelia" or chile reline camarones. Tu y Yo has a festive atmosphere, reminiscent of a Mexican home. The serve a great sangria along with their fantastic food. The servers are knowledgable and are always willing to make a suggestion that is sure to please. This is the place to step outside your comfort zone because the food is all fresh, and expertly executed. (617-623-5411)
About Jessica Polizzotti
Born and raised in Boston, Jessica knows her city like the back of her hand. Always looking to uncover something new, Jessica keeps up on the latest and greatest Boston offerings. Although Jessica has been a world traveler since her teens, her favorite trip may always be her Italian honeymoon. Living in a city that allows her to experience a change in seasons equals an opportunity to enjoy a shift in activities. As the old New England cliché says, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute.”
Read more about Jessica Polizzotti here.