BEST MEXICAN RESTAURANT (2005)
305-245-8182 People head toward South Miami-Dade County for all sorts of reasons -- some for a short visit on their way to the Keys, some to enjoy a day at Biscayne National Park or the produce-rich farm country, some to spend time in a detention center. We take the drive for the glory of authentic Mexican cooking, which is accessible in various restaurants and take-out joints that cluster along, or a short distance from, Krome Avenue. Our favorite is El Toro Taco, where the tortilla chips are crisp, the salsa hot, the beer cold -- or as cold as you can store it in your cooler, because it's a BYOB policy here. The jammed-to-capacity crowds who congregate on weekends gladly tote their own Coronas and gleefully partake of warm corn tortillas filled with grilled steak, cilantro, and onions (tacos de bistec). Or sumptuous chicken leg and thigh smothered in smooth mole sauce with sharp whispers of sleek, bittersweet chocolate (mole de pollo). Or burritos that burst with shredded chicken or beef (or bulging barbacoa beef tamales or flame-seared fajitas). Over the decades, the Hernandez family has turned its humble establishment into a Homestead institution the old-fashioned way -- by making everything, refried beans to the tastiest of tortillas, from scratch. Be forewarned: You might be subjected to a mariachi serenade.
Readers´ Choice: El Rancho Grande Restaurant
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