There’s no shortage of great Mexican restaurants in San Francisco. One that always has our back, like a trusty friend who’s ready to greet you with a stiff drink after a long week, is Nopalito (Nopa's sister restaurant). The spot in NoPa is where we go to dig into solid Californian-Mexican food and cocktails in a space that’s ideal for pretty much any occasion, including those Friday night dinners after a long week, and any time we want to sit with friends and trade dating horror stories over a mezcal margarita.

The menu is made up of small dishes like excellent totopos covered in queso fresco, crema-topped taquitos, pozole, quesadillas, and large plates like juicy carnitas that you can easily pull apart with a spoon. The fact that the food comes out quick, and you can usually walk up and get a table on the heated, covered patio or at the bar adds to the reliability of this place.

Food Rundown

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Totopos Con Chile

Best chips and salsa in the game. We have yet to meet anyone who feels differently.

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A lot like every other set of taquitos you’ve ever had. Solid but not necessary.

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Ceviche de Pescado y Calamar

A tasty, acidic, spicy fish mixture you will enjoy.

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You can't go wrong here. The tender pork is braised in orange, bay leaf, and cinnamon, and those flavors come through. Cabbage salad, tortillas, and salsas come on the side.

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