Three New Mexican Restaurants to Try in Raleigh & the Burbs

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A trio of Mexican concepts land in Raleigh + the burbs.

Giving Raleighites something to taco ’bout are three spicy Mexican concepts recently opened—or bowing soon—in both Raleigh and its burbs. (Hey, don’t tempt us with a good time… will drive for margaritas and tacos). For a sneak “taste,” we asked what to expect and how these hot spots’ll stand out from the rest. 

a’Verde Cocina + Tequila Library

“Welcome to Mexico City in Cary, where everyone speaks English,” says Top Chef alum Katsuji Tanabe of his recently opened a’Verde Cocina + Tequila Library. The menu features traditional Mexican food (think loaded nachos, enchiladas, street charred corn and more) made by “the son of a Japanese and Mexican family.” And no Mexican resto is complete without cocktails… so when you get thirsty, spring for the Like, Literally or Aloe You Long Time. averdecary.com

Lil Hombre

Although local bar owner Jason Howard’s concepts are usually small and simple, their quirkiness makes them especially distinct. Howard’s newest spot, Lil Hombre, will be no different—just in Clayton. “[Lil Hombre] is a taco version of The Cardinal,” says Howard—“simple, no frills.” In addition to tacos (feat. meat cooked outside over a live fire!), the spot will be tequila and mezcal heavy—and frozen palomas and margs will be on deck to enjoy either inside or out under a large pergola. Si, por favor! @lilhombreclayton

Gym Tacos

A gym that you’ll actually be excited about going to… Gym Tacos’ highly anticipated brick-and-mortar is finally open on Hillsborough Street (across from Meredith College) serving up OG faves from the food truck like tacos (natch), quesadillas and burritos. “Everything about Gym Tacos is fresh—from our homemade corn tortillas to our homemade salsas, as well as our homemade aguas, like Jamaica and Horchata,” says Gym Tacos GM Kayla Ramirez. “The facial expressions we see are all the proof you’ll ever need… the taste itself will get you that perfect out-of-this-world feeling.” Spec-taco-lar! @gymtacos

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