People disagree on everything these days. Trump or die. Beyonce or Rihanna. To Brexit or nah. But the one thing we can all agree on is that tacos are f*cking delicious. In fact, if you ever meet someone who wants to argue about that, you need to run because that is an irrational person and they are not to be trusted…ever. It comes as no surprise that delicious, authentic and mariachi-blasting Mexican food is a point of pride for us: the fresher the ingredients and the quirkier the recipes, the happier our chilli-loving, margarita-devoted and Frida-wannabe souls will be. We firmly believe the taco cleanse is an actual real diet that we could totally get into. Let’s start off by saying that when this whole Mexican eating and drinking tour comes to an end, we hope you will look back upon this adventure and realize it has made you a better, brighter and happier person… or maybe it’s just the margaritas ?
So if your idea of good Mexican food is the Taco Bell drive-thru window at midnight, it’s time for you to grow a moustache or a monobrow and fasten your seatbelt to take a trip to our favourite Mexican joints and enjoy the rampant spread of tacos, burritos, tamales and margaritas in offer to see how real Mexican food is done… muy caliente! Trust our Mexican guide The Fox, she knows her tacos and her margaritas like no one on this island!
Let’s start off by saying that when this whole Mexican eating and drinking tour comes to an end, you will look back upon this adventure and realise it has made you a better, brighter and happier person… or maybe it’s just the Margaritas? It’s a known fact that food tastes better with tequila and this place is so good it’s dangerous. With a retro look that welcomes you without making you feel as if you’ve walked into a quesadilla, Lacalaca is a godly oasis to hang your sombrero and take on the scene and guacamole, in that order. Everything is colourful and spicy: the deco, the dainty looking food and their Jalapeño infused Margaritas. Yes, for those with balls who fancy daring spicy and mind-boggling drinks, they are redonkulously delish and you will definitely be ordering more than one. Si señor.
So if you’re looking for the perfect place to people watch while catching up with your besties, this is the spot to hit. Lacalaca delivers authentic and fresh food absolutely loaded with explosive and mouthwatering flavours. Consistently outstanding in quality and form. Get down on a Friday night to enjoy their DJs, cross yourself and grab one of their jalapeño-infused Margarita Jugs (yes! they come in jugs too!) and some Tacos de Carnitas. There isn’t anything more worth to get off that juice cleanse, we’re telling ya… you can thank us later.
Find it: Jl.Drupadi 1, Seminyak
// image by Hungry Hong Kong
Zap! Boom! Kapow! A dream in Technicolour and the streets of Acapulco serve as the backdrop for endless nights of music and tequila drinking. In three words, Motel Mexicola is Tarantino’s wet dream set, ok four words. There seems to be one simple universal and tacit rule in Motel Mexicola. Apart from enjoying their delectable food, sitting at a table is overrated. Here is how it goes. You spot your friends from across the bar and all head to the table. Not to sit at, you loser. You’re going to get on top of it and dance like there is no mañana.
But before we get into the relationship a girl has with a table (it’s a complicated one), let’s talk about food. These kids are onto something good lemme tell ya. While the taco bar and nibble menu are well-known crowd pleasers, their main dishes are the real deal. Too scared to try something out of the taco area? Grow a pair and order their Mole Poblano, a delicious, thick, rich, chocolate-tinged and angel-inspired spicy sauce served with chicken and tortillas, the real ones. And if the chili gets to your head, try one of their 13 different bottles of tequila. Hasta mañana is the only Spanish you’ll need to know!
Find it: Jl.Kayjati 9x, off Petitenget street, Seminyak
We continue our tour of Mexican eating with one probs not totally Mexican joint. But we’ve found the best Tex-Mex in the island so you don’t have to settle for cheap dry bites downtown Kuta or Bali Galleria. Plus as any thinking person will tell you, Mexican food is an absolute good. There is no such thing as “bad” Mexican food the same way there’s no such thing as bad sex, bad pizza, etc. Tacos are one of the healthiest things you can order when the Mexican cravings hit and the ones in Jalapeño are a win-win.
Located in the quiet village of Sanur, this little trailblazing resto has us dreaming of 50 shades of tacos. Served in multicoloured tortillas and decorated plates that will spice up your Instagram feed, the tacos are up there in our Tex-Mex faves. We know, it’s not real Mexican but it’s kinda like when Rihanna came on the scene and people were like “omg is she gonna be bigger than Beyoncé?” No, bitch. She’s not. But she’s still pretty damn incredible. Give us tortillas, salsa, frijoles and we’re good for days. So do yourself a favour and go get a bowl of nachos and a glass of sangria…You’re welcome.
Find it: Jl. Danau Tamblingan, 102, Sanur
Next week, the radio will start playing holiday music. Malls across Kuta are already decorated. Face it – the holidays are here, whether you like it or not. So logically Fajitas are the only solution that will help you continue to deny summer’s over, and Fajitas from La Mexicana are just what the doctor prescribed. It is not a coincidence that they are located at the top of Jl. Raya Canggu and steps away (ok, 5 min bike rides) from Batu Bolong, Berawa, Umalas and Kerobokan… it’s a sign!
Whilst some would argue that this eatery falls into the expensive~ish category, the size of their portions are generous as a Mexican mamacita would serve them, so actually, it is really good value for your pesos. And while it isn’t technically 100% Mexican, their finger-licking Fajitas de Carne Asada are indeed. Beyonce vs. Rihanna all over again. Plus they have one of the most arousing Enchiladas de Cerdo (oink-oink) this little pair of Mexican eyes have ever set sight on and that should be enough for you to go try them and live happily ever after.
Find it: Jl.Raya Canggu
Alright, we’ve got all posh now because, there are blonde Mexicans too, y’know? UNIQUE Rooftop is what we Mexicans call a treat. Situated atop of the Rimba Resort overlooking the lush pool area and the Bukit’s dense jungle, this (yet) hidden gem is a delight for all the senses. Some people say you can even see the ocean – but some people also say the tooth fairy does exist.
The menu was designed as contemporary Mexican cuisine and includes a thirst-quenching list of cocktails – totes posh – to perfectly match the mega-lux fit outs where you can take a dip in the rooftop pool, as you were. And while the food is not the one you’d find in every corner of Mexico City for two pesos, I must confess that as folkloric as that sounds, I prefer my food clean. German-like clean. Like this. So if you aren’t able to run off to another island this weekend, looks like this will be your best bet to feel lost in a tropical paradise surrounded by amigos – thank GAWD there are literally tons of frozen margies you can order to ease the pain.
Find it: Jl Karang Mas Sejahtera, Jimbaran, at Rimba Jimbaran Bali
/// top image by Laca Laca
All you need to know about our author The Fox: gluten-advocate, kombucha-antagonist and coconut-fanatic, The Fox is the eyes, the ears, the tail and everything that young females go to experience the thoughts that run through their heads, but are too afraid or uncomfortable, to say out loud. Unapologetic is two things, her M.O., and her fave RiRi album.