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Q:

Where is the Best Mexican Food in Oakland, California?

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Juan's Place
941 Carleton St
Berkeley, CA 94710
(510) 845-6904
The food is great, the crowds are bearable - grab a mismatched barstool at the bar. This is the epitomy of downhome Mexican food. Best you'll find north of San Diego. Pros + food, service, atmosphere Cons - crowds more
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Taqueria San Jose Inc
3433 E 14TH St
Oakland, CA 94601
(510) 533-5748
When you are feeling like having a burrito but you are tired of the american imitation of the Bell chain, Taqueria San Jose is the place to ... more
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La Borinquena Mex-Icatessen
582 7th Street
Oakland, CA 94607
(510) 444-9954
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Otaez Mexican Restaurant
3872 International Blvd
Oakland, CA 94601
(510) 536-0909
Their tacos are the closest thing to the street tacos in Mexico, and they're only $1.50. Their tacos are simple, small corn tortillia, meat, onions, cilantro and salsa. That is what makes a real mexican street taco. The Americanized version has cheese, lettuce rice and pico de gallo (salsa.) If you want to try an authentic taco, come here and try their Al Pastor (BBQ pork and pineapple) tacos. It is the flavoring in the meat that makes the biggest difference in tacos. Once you've had this type of taco, you will never go back to burritos and American tacos. Did I mention, its only $1.50 per taco. Pros + Meat Flavoring, $1.50 per taco, Fast Service more
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Picante
1328 6th St
Berkeley, CA 94710
(510) 525-3121
Now that I have the haters on me, Picante is a LARGE, cavernous place. It's a great place for people with kids who desparately need to go someplace where they won't get frowned on, and can meet others' with kids. So that's good for them; but not so much for the rest of us. The food used to be better, but it's still very, very good. Housemade tortilla's are fantastic no matter what you order with them. Their quesadilla's are pathetically small; I think they're made only for the kids. Tortilla soup, ceviche, carne asada, tortas, chile rellenos are all excellent. I hate this place when it's mad crowded; it seems that parents don't care that their kids scream and throw food all over the place, but otherwise, it's a great place to go. And you can linger for a long, long time and no one will bother you. Oh, and the hot chocolate and coffee are to die for. But honestly, beware, peak times make this place unbearably loud and crowded, and the rugrats make it impossible for those us who've ... more
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Cancun
2134 Allston Way
Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 549-0964
Cancun was first recommended to me by a Mexican friend of mine; though I realize now that I should have taken her suggestion with a grain of salt. As a car-less freshman college student, she couldn't have possibly known at the time of the East Bay's more popular and authentic Mexican restaurants. While Cancun has an excellent salsa bar and works seafood more vigorously into its dishes in true San Diegan fashion, the counter-top pick-up restaurant does not live up to Southern California standards. For salsa enthusiasts, this is truly the place, though recent practices limit customers to two salsa containers, taking away more than half of the fun (and the flavor). Pros + wide variety, quick service Cons - long wait at times more
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Restaurante Dona Tomas
5004 Telegraph Ave
Oakland, CA 94609
(510) 450-0522
Tasty treats abounded, the margaritas were yummy, and the service was snappy. But really, the carnitas for $17 weren't that much better than the $5 plate you can get at a dozen places in Fruitvale. So, if you are a pretentious yuppie who would rather buy good if highly overpriced food than slum with the poor folks, this place is for you. Pros + Great food, good drinks Cons - Way too expensive for Mexican more
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Tres Agaves
130 Townsend St
San Francisco, CA 94107
(415) 227-0500
Tres Agaves is a massive, destination style Mexican restaurant just a few blocks from the ball park. It feels like a giant, converted warehouse - there's plenty of space with very, very high ceilings. The food is fantastic - it's high end Mexican fare reminiscent of a place you would find in Mexico City. They have all the legit stuff like Queso Fundido (with Chorizo) and Sopes. The service is very attentive. In terms of drinks, they make two styles of micheladas - one with spicy tomato and one with lime juice. The margaritas are stiff and good as well. I took off one star for feeling too much like a Vegas style mega restaurant, but that's probably not fair as this is a very good, very fun place. The night I was there, Mexican actor Diego Luna was there as well (y tu mama tambien), which gave the place some immediate street cred. more
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La Salsa Fresh Mexican Grill
501 14th Street Ste. 24
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 834-3422
This place is really good and muy bien. I love the food, service and the overall prices. The waiters were terrific and the food came out fas... more
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Mario's La Fiesta Mexican
2444 Telegraph Ave
Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 540-9123
I started eating their amazing pan-fried burritos almost 20 years ago before the burrito craze hit! Then they added the hand-rolled burritos which are wonderful. But their best dish is by far the Enchiladas Verdes which is chicken enchiladas in green sauce. Their other enchiladas are great too as well as their flautas. The portions are great; the cheese, rice, beans, and sauces cover the hot plate. This is a heart-warming place, full of history and happy memories for my family. Their spicy salsas, always on the table, kick butt. Pros + Great value, Family place, Great food more
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