“There are very, very few restaurants here that are 100% Mexican,” says Mexican hotelier José Alberto Callejo. For a simple reason, he explains: “the Spanish market understands the Tex-Mex cuisine like Mexican cuisine, when it is typical cuisine of the United States and, sometimes, even Mexicans themselves have a hard time identifying them by eye, but not by taste.”
Callejo specifies that Tex Mex was the train that took Mexican emigrants to Texas, who, once settled, cooked from whatever they could find as substitutes for their fresh produce. For example, roasted tomato sauce for canned fried tomato; fresh chiles for cans of chiles in vinegar, and a long etcetera.
In total, the North American generations descended from those Mexicans They only keep 50 dishes in the Tex Mex kitchen, divided into two styles: California and Florida. And you will recognize them because they do not have aromatic herbs such as epazote and coriander, instead they put more cumin, pepper and nutmeg.
On the other hand, “Mexican gastronomy adds hundreds of thousands of dishes among the 32 existing states, each one with its own kitchen,” Callejo distinguishes.
Yucatecan cuisine comes to Madrid
For allusions, we also consulted Peter Eva, the highest representative of Yucatecan cuisine in Mexico, where it has sixteen of its own restaurants and ten franchises. In his flagship restaurant Kuukshows the essence of Yucatan through a cuisine that dives into the product and the tradition elaborated with contemporary techniques.
But he has been kicking around Madrid for some time and trying out Mexican restaurants in the capital as well as in Barcelona, as he prepares to imminently open his first restaurant in Europe, to be called Q78.
This is how he describes it: “a gastromezcal sanctuary, elegant but casual, with frank, contemporary Mexican food, with flavors and aromas of its land, coal, firewood, smoke, but also vegetables and fresh products that we have found in Madrid” .
Pedro Evia’s recommendations in Madrid and Barcelona
blessed dreams, a chilaquería in Madrid where chef Misael Campuzano and barman Torres Rodrigo Espinosa make chilaquiles, tacos, the best guacamole and authentic chelas. For the most daring, the best selection of mezcal and 100% agave tequilas.
Corn, water and limeTaco & Cóctel Bar, is the best taqueria of gastronomic specialties in Madrid, with freshly made corn tortillas in its restaurant, plus signature cocktails specialized in tequila and mezcal.
Tamana Mexican fonda in Madrid with granny flavors and traditional cooks, who have ancient and familiar knowledge of Mexican cuisine, safeguard and spread ancestral techniques, tricks and traditional recipes made over a slow fire.
Oaxaca Mexican Cuisine, de Joan Bagur, in Barcelona, is the Sagardi Group’s Mexican restaurant whose essence is traditional cuisine.
José Alberto Callejo’s favorites
Callejo recommends us here your favorites in Madrid and Andalusiaclassified based on the percentage of authentically Mexican dishes, which quite a lot are, and the percentage that corresponds to Tex-Mex dishes.
In the same way, difference when tropicalize some dishes, making them Spanish or European. Or when they combine Mexican and Spanish or European ingredients, under the strict global marketing premise: “Think Global, Act Local”. There it goes:
The MXRR taquerias They are the delivery of the Mexican Roberto Ruiz, the first chef to obtain, in all of Europe, a Michelin star for a Mexican restaurant in the disappeared Punto MX. They are 100% Mexican, including the flour tortilla quesadillas.
In Madrid, his Mexican Pacific cuisine restaurant celebrates its one year anniversary, Barracudarecently awarded a Sol Repsol and exported to Marbella under the name of Matarranya MX.
Fisher’sis the rarest and newest of all, it opened a couple of months ago in Madrid, it is very famous in Mexico City and has many branches, its fish tacos are famous and almost everything is Mexican seafood cuisine, both from the Pacific and the Gulf of Mexico.
Sand Pointis located within La Casa de México and is the most innovative of traditional Mexican cuisine, another branch of a popular restaurant in the country.
The temptation, in Mercado San Fernando, on Calle Embajadores, is 100% Mexican. Very cheap and very good in taste, probably the best place in relation quality-price-quantity. The tacos and quesadillas, to repeat.
Taqueria Maria Bonita, there are a couple of branches. It is 100% Mexican and it is the only place where we have found green chorizo tacos, so typical of central Mexico.
Alamillo Taqueriain Plaza del Alamillo, is probably one of the oldest taquerias in Madrid, with its appetizers, its tacos, its melted cheeses or its traditional dishes.
DF Mexican Torteria, is a “rara avis”, since there are few places that have Mexican cakes, which are Mexican sandwiches from which the crumb is removed so that more ingredients can enter. And everything goes on the grill, its filling and the bread afterwards. Although they have tropicalized their menu a bit, it is roughly 90% Mexican and 10% Mediterranean.
The Saintin Granada, is currently a restaurant that is 95% Mexican and 5% Mediterranean from Granada thanks to the advice of Callejo and his wife, chef Irene Garrido Lomeña, to improve the quality and authenticity of its menu, since before it was 80% Mexican, 10% Tex-Mex and 10% Mediterranean.
Pretty girl, is the most authentic in the entire province of Malaga, homemade, like the most traditional restaurants in Mexico, 100% Mexican. It is another “rara avis”, since its owner is Panamanian, but she learned to cook in Mexico and is a Taliban of authentic Mexican traditions and products. It is a luxury to go to eat with her while in Spain. It’s like walking into a typical Mexican Fonda.
Sapine, is the typical Comfort Food taqueria that you can find in any city in central Mexico, 95% Mexican and 5% Tex-Mex; although before they were 100% Mexican, but it did not work out as expected. They have the best Margaritas, Micheladas and Clamatadas in town.
Taqueria Tepito, is the oldest taqueria in Malaga and has two branches. Their chicken flautas are in the Top-5 family of Callejo and Garrido, including those of the best places in Mexico! It is a small portal that is located in the Plaza de los Mártires.
If you don’t want to miss any of our articles, subscribe to our newsletters