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Mole estofado at Madre in Torrance.
Mole estofado at Madre in Torrance.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

21 Essential Sit-Down Mexican Restaurants in LA

Grab a seat, and maybe even a margarita

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Mole estofado at Madre in Torrance.
| Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

Trying to eat through LA’s dizzying Mexican restaurant scene can be an exercise in futility. Because the city hosts the largest concentration of Mexicans in America, and probably the second largest in North America, there’s essentially an endless number of places for tacos and tortas (and tortas ahogadas) and tamales — and that’s to say nothing of the birria, the barbacoa, and all manner of Sinaloan and Oaxacan specialties, among others.

Truly, Los Angeles is a city riddled with incredible Mexican cuisine, from street food to upscale spots, so this map will focus on sit-down brick-and-mortar restaurants around greater Los Angeles. Consider it a sampler of where to find some excellent Mexican food in LA, while any of the links listed prior will be helpful in finding specific dishes or regions.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Birrieria Apatzingan

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10040 Laurel Canyon Blvd
Pacoima, CA 91331
(818) 890-6265

Classic Mexican antojitos and birria destination Apatzingan lives in a crowded center with a convenience store and other businesses on a busy Pacoima intersection. Try the birria with the large, floppy tortillas.

Birria at Birrieria Apatzingan in Pacoima.
Birria at Birrieria Apatzingan in Pacoima.
Matthew Kang/Eater LA

2. Casa Vega

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13301 Ventura Blvd
Sherman Oaks, CA 91423
(818) 788-4868
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This 64-year-old mainstay is perhaps the most iconic Mexican restaurant in the Valley, where big, cheesy combination plates and blended margaritas are the name of the game.

Inside Casa Vega in Sherman Oaks.
Inside Casa Vega in Sherman Oaks.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

3. Madre

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801 N Fairfax Ave #101
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 850-8518
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Standout Madre has locations in Palms, West Hollywood, and Torrance, each a prime example of fantastic Oaxacan cooking from memelas and moles to tlayudas — and all served alongside the widest selection of mezcal in the country.

Memelas from Madre
Memelas at Madre
Jakob Layman

4. Petty Cash Taqueria

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7360 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 933-5300
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Petty Cash is probably the best place to score some pretty standout tacos, uni-laced guacamole, and agave-based cocktails in this part of town. Especially cool digs make it a great place for large groups to gather.

Tables outside of Petty Cash Taqueria & Bar.
Petty Cash Taqueria.
Caroline Pardilla

5. Mírame

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419 N Canon Dr
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
(310) 230-5035
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Chef Joshua Gil has a modern Baja Mexican restaurant in the heart of Beverly Hills, with stellar cocktails and some of the most creative cooking in LA right now. Try the Baja fried snapper with blue corn tortillas.

Indoor outdoor seating at Mirame Beverly Hills.
Mírame in Beverly Hills
Rich Marchewka

6. Sonoratown

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5610 San Vicente Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90019

Popular northern Mexico taco spot Sonoratown has captured the hearts of Angelenos with incredible flour tortillas and grilled meats. The Downtown location recently expanded to a Mid-Wilshire spot so that even more people can get some of the city’s finest tacos. Try the signature chivichanga.

Tacos from Sonoratown.
Tacos from Sonoratown.
Matthew Kang/Eater LA

7. Guelaguetza Restaurant

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3014 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90006
(213) 427-0608
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There’s little debate that Koreatown’s Guelaguetza is the go-to when it comes to Oaxacan cuisine in Los Angeles. There are few better places to indulgent in complex moles than the massive restaurant that always manages to feel especially festive.

Moles at Guelaguetza in LA’s Koreatown.
Moles at Guelaguetza in LA’s Koreatown.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

8. LA Cha Cha Chá

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812 E 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90013
(213) 548-8487
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Mexico City restaurant Terraza Cha Cha Chá opened this rooftop destination in Arts District and the response has been tremendous so far. With Alejandro Guzman helming the kitchen, the modern Mexican fare features tacos, tostadas, and composed dishes that will please a crowd.

Cha Cha Cha’s indoor dining area in Downtown Los Angeles
Cha Cha Chá in Arts District.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

9. Sonoritas Prime Tacos

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2004 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025
(310) 444-9100
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This simple taqueria has some of the finest grilled carne asada and other tacos in the city, all made on handmade flour or corn tortillas. Sonoritas also took over the former Broken Spanish space in Downtown LA for an ideal pre-Staples Center dinner.

Tacos from Sonoritas Prime in Los Angeles.
Tacos from Sonoritas Prime in Los Angeles.
Matthew Kang/Eater LA

10. Bar Hermanito

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2024 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025
(424) 465-9029
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Bar Hermanito is one of the most surprising — and satisfying — dining choices you can make on Sawtelle. The menu takes inspiration from the neighborhood’s Japantown culture and history, with dishes like yellowtail tostada with umeboshi (Japanese pickles) and shiso aguachile and avocado slices fried in togarashi-flecked panko. The best reasons to come to Hermanito, though, are its tacos, smooth cocktails, and westside-cool patio atmosphere: more common choices like al pastor, shrimp, and quesabirria tacos are complemented by a Peking duck platter (not available every day — so consider yourself lucky if you come in and it’s on the menu) with mole, charred green onions, and homemade flour tortillas (blue corn tortillas are available upon request).

11. Gish Bac

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4163 W Washington Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90018
(323) 737-5050

Maria and David Ramos have one of the most impressive Oaxacan restaurants in the city, serving everything from stellar mole to excellent barbacoa enchilada on the weekends.

Barbacoa from Gish Bac
Barbacoa from Gish Bac.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

12. Damian

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2132 E 7th Pl
Los Angeles, CA 90021

Celebrated Mexican chef Enrique Olvera has an outpost of his more casual restaurant Atla from New York City, with pristine takes on upscale Mexican favorites like fish ceviche tostadas and octopus huarache to duck al pastor.

Fish tartare, avocado, furikake at Damian in Los Angeles on a plate with a slice of lime.
Fish tartare tostada at Damian
Araceli Paz

13. Socalo

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1920 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90404
(310) 451-1655
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Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken’s Socalo has all the makings of a Santa Monica staple. Despite opening just months before the pandemic, the all-day restaurant has become a Westside haven for weekend brunch, busy burritos, and other casual Mexican fare. Don’t sleep on the happy hour either.

A cut chicken burrito showing its insides, held up next to a blue wall.
Burrito at Socalo
Farley Elliott

14. Mercado

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1416 4th St
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 526-7121
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Part of a growing collection of Mercado restaurants, this Santa Monica outlet prepares quality fare for the whole neighborhood. From straightforward guacamole to kale salads to a proper chile relleno, there’s something for everyone to enjoy here.

15. Aqui es Texcoco

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5850 S Eastern Ave
Commerce, CA 90040
(323) 725-1429
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This is the place for lamb barbacoa, tucked into a space out in Commerce. With additional outlets in Tijuana and San Diego, Aqui es Texcoco remains one of the stronger options for eating big weekend plates of pit-roasted lamb.

Aqui es Texcoco in Commerce, California.
Aqui es Texcoco in Commerce, California.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

16. Bizarra Capital

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12706 Philadelphia St
Whittier, CA 90601

Whittier mainstay Bizarra Capital is known for their overclocked takes on all sorts of dishes, from cocktails to tacos to mole fries. Chef Ricardo Diaz has built a restaurant behemoth on the stuff.

17. La Casita Mexicana

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4030 Gage Ave
Bell, CA 90201
(323) 773-1898
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A standard-bearer for sit-down Mexican cuisine, La Casita is as award-winning as it is delicious. Sure the team there has gone on the open several other places since, but this remains the real destination for anyone looking to explore what Mexican cooking can be.

La Casita Mexicana’s dining room in Bell, California.
La Casita Mexicana’s dining room in Bell, California.
La Casita Mexicana

18. Rocio's Mexican Kitchen

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7891 Garfield Ave
Bell Gardens, CA 90201
(562) 659-7800

Rocio Camacho goes by the moniker of the Goddess of Mole for a reason: the moles and other cooking here are truly some of the best in the entire country.

Chef Rocio Camacho stands inside her colorful Mexican restaurant, wearing a white shirt.
Chef Rocio Camacho stands inside her colorful Mexican restaurant.
Bill Esparza

19. Tamales Elena Y Antojitos

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8101 Garfield Ave
Bell Gardens, CA 90201
(562) 674-3043
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Bell Gardens has a destination-worthy tamal and guisados restaurant from Maria Elena Lorenzo and her family of phenomenal cooks. The namesake tamales are the reason to come, and the pozoles and guisados are the reason to stay.

Patio at Tamales Elena y Antojitos.
Patio at Tamales Elena y Antojitos.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

20. Coni'Seafood

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3544 W Imperial Hwy
Inglewood, CA 90303
(310) 672-2339
Visit Website

This Inglewood restaurant is the master of shrimp in all preparations – fried, sautéed, cut into ceviche marinero, or left whole for shockingly bright and spicy aguachile with a vibrant jalapeño puree. But the real star here is the pescado zarandeado, whole snook coated in an umami-rich paste and shaken over coals. Yup, this is definitely a contender for the best Mexican seafood restaurant in all of Los Angeles.

A top down view of grilled fish, shrimp, and ceviche.
Coni’Seafood
Farley Elliott

21. Ortega 120

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1814 S Pacific Coast Hwy
Redondo Beach, CA 90277
(310) 792-4120
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The South Bay loves Ortega 120, the long-running restaurant serving everything from short rib and truffle cheese nachos to handmade tortillas. The space itself is fun and funky, with a charmingly casual vibe.

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1. Birrieria Apatzingan

10040 Laurel Canyon Blvd, Pacoima, CA 91331
Birria at Birrieria Apatzingan in Pacoima.
Birria at Birrieria Apatzingan in Pacoima.
Matthew Kang/Eater LA

Classic Mexican antojitos and birria destination Apatzingan lives in a crowded center with a convenience store and other businesses on a busy Pacoima intersection. Try the birria with the large, floppy tortillas.

10040 Laurel Canyon Blvd
Pacoima, CA 91331

2. Casa Vega

13301 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91423
Inside Casa Vega in Sherman Oaks.
Inside Casa Vega in Sherman Oaks.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

This 64-year-old mainstay is perhaps the most iconic Mexican restaurant in the Valley, where big, cheesy combination plates and blended margaritas are the name of the game.

13301 Ventura Blvd
Sherman Oaks, CA 91423

3. Madre

801 N Fairfax Ave #101, Los Angeles, CA 90046
Memelas from Madre
Memelas at Madre
Jakob Layman

Standout Madre has locations in Palms, West Hollywood, and Torrance, each a prime example of fantastic Oaxacan cooking from memelas and moles to tlayudas — and all served alongside the widest selection of mezcal in the country.

801 N Fairfax Ave #101
Los Angeles, CA 90046

4. Petty Cash Taqueria

7360 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Tables outside of Petty Cash Taqueria & Bar.
Petty Cash Taqueria.
Caroline Pardilla

Petty Cash is probably the best place to score some pretty standout tacos, uni-laced guacamole, and agave-based cocktails in this part of town. Especially cool digs make it a great place for large groups to gather.

7360 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036

5. Mírame

419 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Indoor outdoor seating at Mirame Beverly Hills.
Mírame in Beverly Hills
Rich Marchewka

Chef Joshua Gil has a modern Baja Mexican restaurant in the heart of Beverly Hills, with stellar cocktails and some of the most creative cooking in LA right now. Try the Baja fried snapper with blue corn tortillas.

419 N Canon Dr
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

6. Sonoratown

5610 San Vicente Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90019
Tacos from Sonoratown.
Tacos from Sonoratown.
Matthew Kang/Eater LA

Popular northern Mexico taco spot Sonoratown has captured the hearts of Angelenos with incredible flour tortillas and grilled meats. The Downtown location recently expanded to a Mid-Wilshire spot so that even more people can get some of the city’s finest tacos. Try the signature chivichanga.

5610 San Vicente Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90019

7. Guelaguetza Restaurant

3014 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90006
Moles at Guelaguetza in LA’s Koreatown.
Moles at Guelaguetza in LA’s Koreatown.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

There’s little debate that Koreatown’s Guelaguetza is the go-to when it comes to Oaxacan cuisine in Los Angeles. There are few better places to indulgent in complex moles than the massive restaurant that always manages to feel especially festive.

3014 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90006

8. LA Cha Cha Chá

812 E 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90013
Cha Cha Cha’s indoor dining area in Downtown Los Angeles
Cha Cha Chá in Arts District.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

Mexico City restaurant Terraza Cha Cha Chá opened this rooftop destination in Arts District and the response has been tremendous so far. With Alejandro Guzman helming the kitchen, the modern Mexican fare features tacos, tostadas, and composed dishes that will please a crowd.

812 E 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90013

9. Sonoritas Prime Tacos

2004 Sawtelle Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025
Tacos from Sonoritas Prime in Los Angeles.
Tacos from Sonoritas Prime in Los Angeles.
Matthew Kang/Eater LA

This simple taqueria has some of the finest grilled carne asada and other tacos in the city, all made on handmade flour or corn tortillas. Sonoritas also took over the former Broken Spanish space in Downtown LA for an ideal pre-Staples Center dinner.

2004 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025

10. Bar Hermanito

2024 Sawtelle Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025

Bar Hermanito is one of the most surprising — and satisfying — dining choices you can make on Sawtelle. The menu takes inspiration from the neighborhood’s Japantown culture and history, with dishes like yellowtail tostada with umeboshi (Japanese pickles) and shiso aguachile and avocado slices fried in togarashi-flecked panko. The best reasons to come to Hermanito, though, are its tacos, smooth cocktails, and westside-cool patio atmosphere: more common choices like al pastor, shrimp, and quesabirria tacos are complemented by a Peking duck platter (not available every day — so consider yourself lucky if you come in and it’s on the menu) with mole, charred green onions, and homemade flour tortillas (blue corn tortillas are available upon request).

2024 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025

11. Gish Bac

4163 W Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90018
Barbacoa from Gish Bac
Barbacoa from Gish Bac.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

Maria and David Ramos have one of the most impressive Oaxacan restaurants in the city, serving everything from stellar mole to excellent barbacoa enchilada on the weekends.

4163 W Washington Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90018

12. Damian

2132 E 7th Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90021
Fish tartare, avocado, furikake at Damian in Los Angeles on a plate with a slice of lime.
Fish tartare tostada at Damian
Araceli Paz

Celebrated Mexican chef Enrique Olvera has an outpost of his more casual restaurant Atla from New York City, with pristine takes on upscale Mexican favorites like fish ceviche tostadas and octopus huarache to duck al pastor.

2132 E 7th Pl
Los Angeles, CA 90021

13. Socalo

1920 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90404
A cut chicken burrito showing its insides, held up next to a blue wall.
Burrito at Socalo
Farley Elliott

Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken’s Socalo has all the makings of a Santa Monica staple. Despite opening just months before the pandemic, the all-day restaurant has become a Westside haven for weekend brunch, busy burritos, and other casual Mexican fare. Don’t sleep on the happy hour either.

1920 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90404

14. Mercado

1416 4th St, Santa Monica, CA 90401

Part of a growing collection of Mercado restaurants, this Santa Monica outlet prepares quality fare for the whole neighborhood. From straightforward guacamole to kale salads to a proper chile relleno, there’s something for everyone to enjoy here.

1416 4th St
Santa Monica, CA 90401

15. Aqui es Texcoco

5850 S Eastern Ave, Commerce, CA 90040
Aqui es Texcoco in Commerce, California.
Aqui es Texcoco in Commerce, California.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

This is the place for lamb barbacoa, tucked into a space out in Commerce. With additional outlets in Tijuana and San Diego, Aqui es Texcoco remains one of the stronger options for eating big weekend plates of pit-roasted lamb.

5850 S Eastern Ave
Commerce, CA 90040

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16. Bizarra Capital

12706 Philadelphia St, Whittier, CA 90601

Whittier mainstay Bizarra Capital is known for their overclocked takes on all sorts of dishes, from cocktails to tacos to mole fries. Chef Ricardo Diaz has built a restaurant behemoth on the stuff.

12706 Philadelphia St
Whittier, CA 90601

17. La Casita Mexicana

4030 Gage Ave, Bell, CA 90201
La Casita Mexicana’s dining room in Bell, California.
La Casita Mexicana’s dining room in Bell, California.
La Casita Mexicana

A standard-bearer for sit-down Mexican cuisine, La Casita is as award-winning as it is delicious. Sure the team there has gone on the open several other places since, but this remains the real destination for anyone looking to explore what Mexican cooking can be.

4030 Gage Ave
Bell, CA 90201

18. Rocio's Mexican Kitchen

7891 Garfield Ave, Bell Gardens, CA 90201
Chef Rocio Camacho stands inside her colorful Mexican restaurant, wearing a white shirt.
Chef Rocio Camacho stands inside her colorful Mexican restaurant.
Bill Esparza

Rocio Camacho goes by the moniker of the Goddess of Mole for a reason: the moles and other cooking here are truly some of the best in the entire country.

7891 Garfield Ave
Bell Gardens, CA 90201

19. Tamales Elena Y Antojitos

8101 Garfield Ave, Bell Gardens, CA 90201
Patio at Tamales Elena y Antojitos.
Patio at Tamales Elena y Antojitos.
Wonho Frank Lee/Eater LA

Bell Gardens has a destination-worthy tamal and guisados restaurant from Maria Elena Lorenzo and her family of phenomenal cooks. The namesake tamales are the reason to come, and the pozoles and guisados are the reason to stay.

8101 Garfield Ave
Bell Gardens, CA 90201

20. Coni'Seafood

3544 W Imperial Hwy, Inglewood, CA 90303
A top down view of grilled fish, shrimp, and ceviche.
Coni’Seafood
Farley Elliott

This Inglewood restaurant is the master of shrimp in all preparations – fried, sautéed, cut into ceviche marinero, or left whole for shockingly bright and spicy aguachile with a vibrant jalapeño puree. But the real star here is the pescado zarandeado, whole snook coated in an umami-rich paste and shaken over coals. Yup, this is definitely a contender for the best Mexican seafood restaurant in all of Los Angeles.

3544 W Imperial Hwy
Inglewood, CA 90303

21. Ortega 120

1814 S Pacific Coast Hwy, Redondo Beach, CA 90277

The South Bay loves Ortega 120, the long-running restaurant serving everything from short rib and truffle cheese nachos to handmade tortillas. The space itself is fun and funky, with a charmingly casual vibe.

1814 S Pacific Coast Hwy
Redondo Beach, CA 90277

Related Maps