Food in Toronto: I Mexican’t Even

There’s so much diversity in Toronto that it’s high time the food joints followed suit. Long gone are the days where Mexican food consists of corn, beans, and chili peppers. There’s now a spectrum of classic to fusions that has my taste buds tingling. Here are my top picks for places that not only make me salivate, but good enough to make the cartel swap out drugs for tacos.

Gobernador

Located in Kensington Market is Seven Lives Tacos (69 Kensington Ave). I have to apologize to the vegetarians and fist bump the pescetarians on this one — it’s a whole lotta fish. Boasted by many as the best tacos in the city and whose title I can’t argue with. They got a double taco encasing the goods so it makes it easier (and less messy) for gobbling. The seafood and dressings pack a punch of flavor. Try the Blackened Mahi Mahi if you want to exercise sweet/sour or the Gobernador for a spicy/sour combo. This place has very limited seating and it’s highly likely you’re going to have to stand around awkwardly to eat.

Arctic char tostada, Nanaimo paleta, Crispy oxtail taco

With multiple locations, La Carnita has an air and ambience that is hip and happening. Just like my brain, this place only begins to operate after 5 pm. Be sure to put your name down as soon as you enter the door because you’re most likely going to have to wait. Many of their tacos have a tasty spin to them — some apple pieces here or a drizzle of honey there. My favorites include Pollo Frito, In Cod We Trust, Tostada de Ceviche, and most definitely the Arctic Char Tostada. Also, the Mexican Meatballs are a nice appetizer to share. Be sure to grab a paleta because when are you ever going to be able to eat a Nanaimo bar in the form of a popsicle!?

Now Maizal (133 Jefferson Ave) is far away, but definitely closest to my heart. This restaurant is located in Liberty Village and is quite simply, beautiful. It’s a wonderful date spot and a great choice for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. The food is wholesome, affordable, and delicious. They are famous for their quesadillas but they’ve recently added a whole lot more to their menu. I enjoyed the Chicken Pibil quesadilla, Tacos Dorados Pollo, and everything else I’ve gotten here. They’ve got a nice assortment of drinks. If you want a Mexican version of a chai tea try their Horchata, but if you’d like to flirt with temptation then opt for the sangria instead. Also, check out my favorite thing about this place — their quirky washrooms!

Chicken Fajitas
Chocolate and dulce de leche churro

We can end full circle to grab dessert at Kensington market. Tucked a little ways in is a Churro place called Pancho’s Bakery (214 Augusta Ave). They serve their churros up and out fresh from a beacon of oil. If that doesn’t sound delicious, then get them stuffed with variants of sauce like Dulce de leche or Chocolate. They also stock the wickedly popular churro cone. Pro tip: Grab napkins cause it can get quite sticky!

There are so many more eateries that I haven’t discussed who serve up delicious Mexican food. If someone ever argues that you can’t get a mean taco in the city of Toronto, redirect them to this article and taco it over.