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Auckland’s most vibrant Mexican restaurant

The atmosphere at Mexican Café in Auckland is vibrant, excited, loud; red-faced waitresses rush around as people continue to poor in through the door and a table of ten orders yet another round of margaritas.

And still the service is good. The waitress brings a jug of water to the table – no doubt in anticipation of the spiciness to come – and the food arrives swiftly after.

One taco salad and a plato grande, a plate consisting of two enchiladas, one taco, beans and rice; they look wonderful and taste even better.

The plato grande is billed as being a combination dish “for the big appetite” – but the taco salad looks equally as large. No surprises, my partner is unable to eat it all; I, on the other hand, have no trouble polishing off my plate.

The food is zesty, fresh and oh so delicious. Fortunately it is happy hour so the tap beers are just $5 and margaritas are $7.50, or $16 by the jug. It’s just what we want at 6:45pm on a Saturday night.

On the other hand, if we’d arrived just 15 minutes later not only would we have missed happy hour but we would have had to wait for a table – as evidenced by the hungry-looking people milling around the bar, eyeing us like vultures.

What is it about Mexican food that makes it so popular? In central Auckland alone there is no less than three other restaurants churning out burritos, tacos and enchiladas – Mexicali Fresh, Mexico, California Burrito.

But Mexican Café is surely the liveliest of the lot. You can usually expect to see at least one large group of women out on a hen’s night on any given Saturday and the restaurant’s live music on Wednesday and Friday nights is sure to draw a crowd.

It’s easy to see why Mexican Café is so popular, then. It’s more than just another Auckland restaurant that serves good Mexican food – it’s an event, it’s a fiesta.

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  1. 67 Victoria Street West, Auckland City Centre, Auckland City, Auckland

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