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The Best Mexican Restaurants in Manchester

BY: Shaun Barnes | 5 Nov 2015

People often ask what’s my favourite cuisine? While there’s no definitive answer - it changes as often as the weather in Manchester – there’s one that’s always hanging around the top few spots, Mexican.

I love everything about Mexican food; it’s vibrant and colourful, spicy and hot and they seem to use my favourite ingredients – chillies, avocados and lime - in almost every dish. From tostadas and tacos to burritos and quesadillas I just can’t get enough. Not to mention that guacamole is probably my favourite thing in the world to eat.

The drinks are great too. Tequila and mescal are amongst my favourite sprits and there are few better cocktails on a hot summers day than a good Margarita.

It seems I’m not alone either as there are now so many Mexican restaurants in Manchester.  

Barburrito is perhaps not the most authentic and not quite a restaurant either. I like to think of it as a Mexican subway as I walk along the counter choosing toppings and ingredients for my burrito. They are fast, efficient and do make everything from scratch though. It was also the first Mexican food I ate in Manchester after they opened their first branch over 10 years ago. They’ve since expanded to three in the city as well as others in London, Liverpool, Nottingham and Leeds.

Better burritos can be found at Changos Burrito Baon Oxford Road. They’re extremely busy at lunchtimes thanks to the crazy £4.95 lunch deal, possibly the best value in town.

There are more burrito bargains to be had at Pancho’s Burrito. Originally with one and then two stalls in the Arndale food market they now have a proper restaurant on Chester Street (just off Oxford Road) as well.Their Mexican chef produces perhaps the most authentic Mexican food in Manchester and promises the ‘hottest food in town’ too, music to the ears of a chilli addict like me.

Lucha Libre brought their modern Mexican street food from Liverpool to Manchester’s Great Northern Warehouse. They do a fantastic frozen Margarita that can be enjoyed in the outdoor eating area during summer.The latest arrival is El Capo, a Northern Quarter Tequila bar. The food isn’t strictly Mexican as there’s an extensive South American tapas menu too. As well as over 80 varieties of tequila and mescal!

For something a little different try Luck Lust Liquor & Burn by the people behind Almost Famous. As well as the usual suspects there’s influences from West Coast America in their MexiCali fusion dishes.

But perhaps the best is yet to come as London chain Wahaca – founded by MasterChef winner Thomasina Miers – is set to open its first Manchester branch this summer in the Grade II listed Corn Exchange building after a £30m ‘all-food’ redevelopment. Despite having more than 10 branches in London people regularly queue to eat their vibrant food inspired by Mexican street markets.


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Food Geek
BY: Shaun Barnes