LDNGuide

The Best Mexican Restaurants In London

From small taquerias to a wildly creative tasting menu spot, these are our favourite Mexican restaurants in London.
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photo credit: Giulia Verdinelli

It’s possible you’ve heard someone say that London doesn’t have any good Mexican food. We say that’s a myth perpetuated by Americans who envy our national health service and the wealth of cosplay Downton Abbey opportunities. They might have a point, though, given that most of the Mexican food in London is tacos even though (spoiler alert) not all Mexican food is tacos. Here are the best places to check out—for tacos and beyond.


THE SPOTS

photo credit: Cavita

Mexican

Marylebone

$$$$Perfect For:Date NightImpressing Out of TownersSpecial Occasions

Cavita on Wigmore Street is one of those restaurants you want everyone to see you at. Ideally while engaged in a hilarious conversation with a fabulous friend and drinking just the right number of spiced watermelon margaritas. But don’t write this place off as just a gorgeous foliage haven. The Mexican food is excellent: don’t miss the utterly divine pig’s head tamal, and know that splitting the whole grilled octopus is a must if you’re rolling with a group. 

There are only a handful of London restaurants that serve birria tacos, and even less than that we’d recommend crossing London to eat. But Birria Taco in Kensal Rise is worth making an effort for. Birria tacos, birria-loaded fries, and birria ramen—everything at this bright, laid-back Mexican spot revolves around the adobo-marinated meat stew. There’s the option of lamb or beef, both of which are excellent, so the only thing to figure out is how much you’re going to order. The answer should be: a lot.

photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

If you’ve ever had the weirdly specific fantasy of stepping off Leytonstone High Road and slipping into a warm serotonin bath of excellent tacos, friendly service, and mood-boosting artwork, you’ll love Homies On Donkeys. It’s equal parts joyful and relaxing, and mainlining excellent roasted broccoli tacos from this taqueria is our idea of self-care. The hard seats create a market stall atmosphere (a nod to its roots) and are just about comfy enough to settle in and work your way through the salsa platter and the slightly earthy, bitter enmoladas de huitlacoche which comes smothered in a moreish, spicy mole.

This taqueria has a small amount of downstairs seating, but when the food is this good, they inevitably fill up fast. Instead join the huddle in front of the counter, sipping a mango agua fresca while you wait for juicy, spicy chorizo tacos, and make friends with other people who have made a pilgrimage to Stoke Newington. Sonora Taquería's menu is short—four to six taco options and quesadillas stuffed with beef, pork, or nopales—but everything is brilliant, and all are improved with a crunchy cheesy crust. Even if you have to take your tacos away and test your quad strength by squatting in an alley next door to eat them, it’s worth it. 

photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

Bad Manners—a Mexican kiosk, set among the gardens and gravestones of St John at Hackney church—slings excellent breakfast burritos, plus hearty egg, bacon, and hash brown tacos. Look out for changing specials too, like kimchi-topped chilaquiles. One important thing to note about the simple seating setup is that it’s alfresco and open to the elements. If it’s glorious out—great. Get in line with locals, order from the hatch, and find a table from which to people-watch over brunch. But if it’s grim outside, get your foil-wrapped breakfast to go.

photo credit: Aleksandra Boruch

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We could go on for hours about La Chingada’s crispy al pastor or soft suadero tacos. Or one of its hot salsas, a deep brown habanero number. But it’s not just the food. This brightly lit Surrey Quays spot is just really good fun. Groups of friends crowd around tables taking down rounds of juicy al pastor tacos like shots, after doing the same with something more tequila-based. The frozen margs flow and you’re never too far away from one last order of tacos, or a gooey quesadilla for the road. Their Euston spot is similarly great for food and a fun meal.

We’re about to sound incredibly America’s Next Top Model, but Kol is a restaurant that has it. They serve a Mexican tasting menu in a warm, terracotta dining room with a buzzing open kitchen. Hold the pretentious faff, think instead: smoky mezcal broths, squid paired with a rich cashew mole, and a gooseberry and pear salsa tortilla situation that will make you rue the day you ever willingly bought an Old El Paso kit. It isn’t easy getting a booking at this Marylebone spot but persevere. It will be worth it to experience a Mexican fine dining restaurant that’s confident, wildly creative, and far from boring.

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Suggested Reading

Where To Eat Good Tacos In London image

Where To Eat Good Tacos In London

Cheese-encrusted tortillas, soft suadero, and habanero salsa on top. These are the London taco spots worth knowing about.

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8.4

Mexican-inspired fine dining done sexy, Kol is a Marylebone restaurant you’re unlikely to forget in a hurry.

Sonora Taquería image
8.8

There aren’t many places where we’d happily test our quad strength by squatting in an alley to eat a taco, but Sonora Taquería—a Mexican spot in Stoke Newington—is one of them.

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