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11 Must-Try Mexican Restaurants in Montreal

Go beyond the tacos with pozole, mole, tostadas, and more

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Montreal’s taco scene is decent (and we have a whole guide to it), but there’s more to Mexican food in this town. There’s a sizable Mexican and Central American community here, with restaurants dishing specialty dishes for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner.

Mole (a complex sauce that incorporates chiles, cocoa, and spices), Mexican-style aguachile, breakfast faves like chilaquiles, and seasonal plates like chiles en nogada (peppers smothered in walnuts and pomegranate seeds) can all be found — and that’s where this map comes in.

¡Provecho!

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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El Meson

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This Lachine restaurant has been bringing in aficionados of simple Mexican food for over 25 years. The menu hits all the traditional food options, with tortilla soup, guacamole, chiles rellenos, and fish filets in a garlicky tomato sauce. Sit near the front windows for a view of the river.

El Sabor de México

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This Verdun favourite replicates classic flavours of Mexico, starting with the chef’s specials of fried quesadillas, tacos de birria (braised beef), and enmoladas (stuffed corn tortillas napped in mole). 

Tacos Frida

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Founded by a Oaxacan family, Frida is a formidable destination for classics like carnitas or tinga dished up in corn tortillas, with homemade chorizo and a hefty burrito menu. Check out their cochinita braised pork option, or go for the El Flaco option featuring the chef’s special cecina grilled beef, Oaxacan style.

La Cantina

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Downtown’s La Cantina offers a table d’hôte lunch (including a vegetarian cauliflower and chickpea taco along with meaty choices), a dinner menu featuring chapulines, cactus tempura, and other dishes like Mexican-style brisket not seen elsewhere. 

Maria Bonita

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Mile End gem Maria Bonita has a full menu of Mexican specialties, featuring homemade tortillas, tlacoyos, and sopes appetizers, moving on to specialty stews of fish, meat, or chicken served in cazuelita clay pots. Dairy-loving vegetarians can be happy here, with an alluring choice of meatless options. 

La Capital

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First time visitors to La Capital will find the deliberate kitsch of its Chinatown location charming, from melamine plates with Chinese themes to the maneki fortune cat with the Lucha Libre mask waving to you from the counter. The printed menu features appetizers, tacos, and quesadillas; the chalkboard promotes daily specials where you’ll find dishes that veer towards traditional platters, special beverages, and desserts. Check out the tasting flights for a range of agave-based drinks.

El Rey del Taco

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This anchor of the Jean Talon Market with a new outlet in Mile End has a dizzying menu plus a grab-and-go section that runs the gamut from tacos and enchiladas to the famous vuelve a la vida (return to life) seafood cocktail hangover cure. It’s hard to avoid all things tortilla here, but don’t miss their warming Mexican triumvirate of innard stews during non-terrasse season: pozole, menudo, and birria. 

Cafe Grain D'Or

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This Beaubien café on the southern edge of Little Italy proffers hearty Mexican breakfasts, with a team of home cooks churning out Aztec soup, chilaquiles, and enchiladas from the tiny kitchen. Saturdays are coffee roasting days from the Guatemalan co-ops the owners are connected with; there’s an evocative soundtrack and Wi-Fi for longer daytime visits. 

La Selva

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Plateau restaurant La Selva has been around for almost 40 years, and for good reason: a great value weekend table d’hôte and Thursday/Sunday deals show off the restaurant’s versatility and skill across a range of regional Mexican cuisines. La Selva’s seafood game is strong, with ceviche, Mexican-style salmon tartare, and several riffs on octopus.

Alejandro

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Alejandro’s sunny Village premises features brunches with fresh takes on traditional fare. From benedictos with chipotle cream to pancakes with dulce de leche and a range of smoothies and coffee, Alejandro’s got breakfast covered. 

Calaveras

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This family restaurant near Cinéma Beaubien bills itself as a taco bar, but it’s more: In addition to all manner of folded tortilla-based dishes, they offer ceviche, aguachile, and classic plates like enchiladas (red or green) and mole-based mains. There’s brunch on weekends, and occasional music performances, too.

El Meson

This Lachine restaurant has been bringing in aficionados of simple Mexican food for over 25 years. The menu hits all the traditional food options, with tortilla soup, guacamole, chiles rellenos, and fish filets in a garlicky tomato sauce. Sit near the front windows for a view of the river.

El Sabor de México

This Verdun favourite replicates classic flavours of Mexico, starting with the chef’s specials of fried quesadillas, tacos de birria (braised beef), and enmoladas (stuffed corn tortillas napped in mole). 

Tacos Frida

Founded by a Oaxacan family, Frida is a formidable destination for classics like carnitas or tinga dished up in corn tortillas, with homemade chorizo and a hefty burrito menu. Check out their cochinita braised pork option, or go for the El Flaco option featuring the chef’s special cecina grilled beef, Oaxacan style.

La Cantina

Downtown’s La Cantina offers a table d’hôte lunch (including a vegetarian cauliflower and chickpea taco along with meaty choices), a dinner menu featuring chapulines, cactus tempura, and other dishes like Mexican-style brisket not seen elsewhere. 

Maria Bonita

Mile End gem Maria Bonita has a full menu of Mexican specialties, featuring homemade tortillas, tlacoyos, and sopes appetizers, moving on to specialty stews of fish, meat, or chicken served in cazuelita clay pots. Dairy-loving vegetarians can be happy here, with an alluring choice of meatless options. 

La Capital

First time visitors to La Capital will find the deliberate kitsch of its Chinatown location charming, from melamine plates with Chinese themes to the maneki fortune cat with the Lucha Libre mask waving to you from the counter. The printed menu features appetizers, tacos, and quesadillas; the chalkboard promotes daily specials where you’ll find dishes that veer towards traditional platters, special beverages, and desserts. Check out the tasting flights for a range of agave-based drinks.

El Rey del Taco

This anchor of the Jean Talon Market with a new outlet in Mile End has a dizzying menu plus a grab-and-go section that runs the gamut from tacos and enchiladas to the famous vuelve a la vida (return to life) seafood cocktail hangover cure. It’s hard to avoid all things tortilla here, but don’t miss their warming Mexican triumvirate of innard stews during non-terrasse season: pozole, menudo, and birria. 

Cafe Grain D'Or

This Beaubien café on the southern edge of Little Italy proffers hearty Mexican breakfasts, with a team of home cooks churning out Aztec soup, chilaquiles, and enchiladas from the tiny kitchen. Saturdays are coffee roasting days from the Guatemalan co-ops the owners are connected with; there’s an evocative soundtrack and Wi-Fi for longer daytime visits. 

La Selva

Plateau restaurant La Selva has been around for almost 40 years, and for good reason: a great value weekend table d’hôte and Thursday/Sunday deals show off the restaurant’s versatility and skill across a range of regional Mexican cuisines. La Selva’s seafood game is strong, with ceviche, Mexican-style salmon tartare, and several riffs on octopus.

Alejandro

Alejandro’s sunny Village premises features brunches with fresh takes on traditional fare. From benedictos with chipotle cream to pancakes with dulce de leche and a range of smoothies and coffee, Alejandro’s got breakfast covered. 

Calaveras

This family restaurant near Cinéma Beaubien bills itself as a taco bar, but it’s more: In addition to all manner of folded tortilla-based dishes, they offer ceviche, aguachile, and classic plates like enchiladas (red or green) and mole-based mains. There’s brunch on weekends, and occasional music performances, too.

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