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La Esquina Cafe & Taqueria

Mexican  in  Nolita

All three La Esquinas (cafe, taqueria and brasserie) have been places we’ve frequented since the days when people wore Von Dutch instead of Ed Hardy. It’s about time we got around to actually writing about them.

This review is specifically for the cafe, La Esquina’s urban surf shack - and the taqueria, a prime outdoor seating option. La Esquina may not be the most authentic Mexican in town, but it is one of the few establishments to properly spin everything we love about NYC restaurants - attention to detail, high quality ingredients, and smart flavor combinations - into a taco. Sure, two fish tacos at the cafe cost twelve bucks, but they’re also really good.


Easily one of my favorite things to order here is the Ceviche Estilo Acapuloc. This is a fresh fish ceviche (usually red snapper) that’s served in the same glass bowl you used to get Friendly’s ice cream sundaes in. Fresh lime, avocado, tomatoes and jalapenos give this starter a nice kick. A must order.

The La Esquina Mole Negro is a half chicken drenched in a sweet and savory mole sauce sauce that makes a strong case for best mole in NYC. It’s perfectly balanced - not too heavy or too sweet - and it really brings the chicken to life. We like the chicken mole enchiladas too.

The fish tacos are definitely not our favorite fish taco. That said, on any given day, these can be a little better (or a little worse) than what you’ll find at most places. The fish shows up skewered in a soft taco with pickled red onions and shaved cabbage. It’s the red onions that get me every time. Pretty damn tasty

The crispy pork tacos are absolutely ridiculous. I daydream about them often and pretty much only order this and fish tacos every time I visit...which is why this food rundown isn’t longer.


If you like your tortilla soups thick, skip their tortilla soup. The broth is super thin, but it has great flavor and a nice serving of avocado.

We love taquitos. The oxtail ones are skinny, crispy guys are a nice way to start off your meal, and for eight dollars, you can’t go wrong.

The taqueria makes solo tacos in the three to four dollar range, most of which land somewhere between good and excellent. Our favorites are the chorizo and the sausage with potatoes and cactus. The seasonal mushroom tacos are also really good.

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