A reader seeking homemade tortillas wrote me not long ago and started the e-mail with something like, "Since you are the authority on Mexican food..." Well, if eating at every taqueria I see makes me an authority, then go me! But here's the deal: You might find the best salsa at one place, the best taco at another. I went to the real expert, Whining & Dining bloggers, to find out the best overall Mexican restaurants.
No surprise here: Everyone loves Las Tortugas Deli Mexicana (1215 S. Germantown Rd.; 751-1200). Marlene says: "For the real thing, Los Tortugas Deli Mexicana in Germantown. Hands down, the best. No Tex-Mex here." Todd even suggests a dish: "At Las Tortugas, try the corn on the cob with mayonnaise, cotija cheese, and hot pepper flakes. Sounds gross, but it's fabulous."
Another no-brainer is La Guadalupana (multiple locations, but it seems the original at 4818 Summer is the one folks go to; 685-6857). "La Guadalupana is definitely my favorite. Every dish is yummy. My wife loves La Playita," writes Mark. (Note from me: You have to check out the michelada and the ceviche at La Playita, 6194 Macon; 377-0181).
Maya's scores big, too, (4308 Macon Rd; 763-3893) serving hands-down the best salsa in town. Ever have trouble finding the phone number? It's because the official name is Fuego Maya's, although no one, including the proprietors, use the full name. Now you know. Fredric Koeppel thinks it comes in second, though: "Las Delicias... the best! And then Maya." Somehow I've missed Las Delicias (3727 S. Mendenhall Rd; 542-0170), but I'll remedy that soon -- which brings us full circle. I'm sorry to the person who wrote wanting to know about tortillas, because I deleted your e-mail. I hope you're reading, though: You can buy freshly made corn tortillas and tortilla chips at Las Delicias. The store is just by the restaurant.
--Jennifer Biggs: 529-5223