BEST: Mexican food

MOVE rates CoMo’s Mexican food offerings.

In the mood for Mexican, but not sure where to go? Never fear, MOVE is here. We ranked CoMo’s Mexican restaurants from muy delicioso to así así.

Las Margaritas Here, you can sit outside on a patio that extends over a lake if you’re dining during nice weather. Las Margaritas’ stocked bar is also worth the visit: Try one of its margaritas, be it a regular, jumbo, monster or pitcher size. The dinner menu consists of a large variety of Mexican foods at reasonable prices. For your next visit, order the tacos al pastor –– four tacos filled with pork marinated in salsa made from ancho chiles and topped with cilantro and onions. It’s served with lime and grilled pineapple on top and frijoles charros soup, a traditional soup of beans and bacon. All of that for $8.99, not including tax. Rating: 5/5.

Los Cuates Just outside of Columbia, this place is the area’s best kept secret. It’s a hole-in-the-wall restaurant, and there isn’t much when it comes to decor. What Los Cuates lacks in decoration, it makes up for in flavor. Its tacos are delicious and its tamales are probably the most authentic of Columbia. Los Cuates has an array of meats, including tongue, and provides nice options in chiles. Grab a dish with mole poblano, a Mexican sauce made from a variety of chili peppers and chocolate. Los Cuates offers a nice variation of Jarritos Mexican soda, with flavors like mango and pineapple. If you want to try and make these dishes at home, you can head to the basement of the restaurant and visit its store. You can get fresh produce, meats and Mexican cheeses. It also has an entire aisle dedicated to Mexican candies and it carries conchas, or Mexican sweet breads. Rating: 4/5.

Mi Tierra Another restaurant with a patio, Mi Tierra offers great a la carte Mexican street foods. Its tacos de carne asada, or steak tacos, are cooked and cilantro, onions and lime. Buy only one or as many as you want for $1.99 each. If you’re thinking seafood, the coctel de camaron, or shrimp cocktail, is decent and inexpensive. The shrimp comes with avocado, pico de gallo and cocktail sauce. The rest of the menu is a little more expensive and the variety is slim. However, you can always check out Mi Terra for its nightlife. Rating: 3/5.

El Rancho (Don’t laugh). MOVE’s suggestions? One, go during the day to beat the crowd (yes, it is open before 2 a.m.) Two, order a torta, a Mexican sandwich and one thing that El Rancho successfully does. I ordered mine with steak and it came with jalapeños, guacamole, tomatoes and onions. It was filling, delicious, and inexpensive. The next thing on El Rancho’s menu that deserves recognition are its tacos. Get a cup of horchata with your meal, and you’re set. But get there early, you could end up standing in line for 15 to 30 minutes if you’re stuck with the late-night crowd. Rating: 3/5.

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