Mexican cuisine — tacos al pastor, enchiladas suizas, fajitas, mole, carne asada…what could be better? Over the past decades, Americans have grown to love the bold flavors and comforting familiarity of Mexican food, authentic and otherwise. And of course there's Mexican drink — Corona and Tecate and Negro Modelo and other great beers, and those spirits that hail from Mexico, above all tequila and smoky mezcal.
Mexican eateries are thriving all over the country, and while some serve beer and wine only, many of them have bars attached. If you live in the Washington, D.C. metro area you must visit one of the beloved Guapo’s locations for its frozen matrimonio margaritas (a mix of sangria and house margarita) and succulent enchiladas, or check out El Centro D.F. in Georgetown or on 14th Street — known for their buzzworthy boozy Sunday brunches. If you find yourself in Florida, settle in at Antojitos in Orlando with a shot or two of Don Julio while listening to a live mariachi band. If you've never had a cucumber-jalapeño margarita, head for Denver's popular Blue Bonnet.
In searching for and ranking the 25 best bars at America's Mexican restaurants, we used three criteria: First, we looked for highly rated reviews (at least four out of five stars) from online sources such as Yelp and TripAdvisor; then we gave points to bars that offer a wide variety of tequila and/or mezcal (those that had good selections of both were ranked higher), and that offered more than just the standard Mexican beers; finally, we considered those establishments that had a comfortable atmosphere conducive to the fiesta spirit.
Here are the 25 best Mexican restaurant bars in the country. If you are fortunate to live near one of these Mexican restaurants, consider yourself lucky, and have a shot for us.