I’m going to write this post in a different format – mix things up a little bit :) Rather than give you a narrative, here are my top 7 reasons why La Barca is my favorite Mexican restaurant in LA, and the top 3 reasons why you should NOT/would not want to go to La Barca.
Why La Barca is the best Mexican restaurant in LA:
- It truly has the best Mexican food in town. Many a chain restaurant or taco stand will make this claim, but only one can be accurate. My vote is for La Barca. The food is so delicious – you can literally try anything off the menu and know it will rock.
- It’s so authentic. I love Del Taco and El Torito as much as the next person. But growing up with authentic Mexican food, I know that there is just no substitute for the real thing. Although the food on La Barca’s menu is still pretty Americanized (you can get refried beans and cheddar cheese here), it’s still loads better than whatever you’ll find at Chevy’s.
- The margaritas! They have the best margaritas in town. We Angelenos are used to paying double digit prices for margaritas with barely one shot of tequila in them. But that is the exact opposite of what you’ll find here. The single margaritas have 1.5 shots, and the double margaritas have 3 shots (beware, they WILL sneak up on you). The super-friendly bartender, Hector, has a heavy hand with the alcohol, but is also a pro with the blender, so your tequila will taste more like strawberry, banana or peach.
- The prices. La Barca is SO CHEAP it’s insane. Margaritas range from $3.50 to $9 (and you can get happy hour prices all day on Tuesdays!). I often order the “Side Order Burrito” on the “A La Carte” menu. The bean and cheese burrito is the size of my face, and what would be considered an extra-large burrito literally anywhere else. The price of this burrito? Just $3.50 (and $4.25 if you get it with added rice and wet with red sauce and cheese like I do).
- The atmosphere, experience and memories. It is hard to find a USC student, or anyone who has ever been to South LA ever, without a fond memory of La Barca. My favorite fond memory is of meeting my amazing boyfriend at La Barca – no lie! :) From birthday parties (it’s tradition) to dates, girls’ night outs, pre-frat-invite dinners and “I’m just hungry,” milestones have always been celebrated here. Just walk in that green door in literally a hole in the wall and you’ll have an experience to take with you for life.
- The people. Everyone who works at La Barca is super nice and friendly. If you come enough, they will even learn your name and your preferences – or even have margaritas delivered straight to you as you wait for a table. This kind of personalized experience is hard to come by.
- Free parking. They have a free parking lot in the back – rare in this neighborhood. There’s also free street parking on the adjoining streets.
Why you should NOT go to La Barca:
- It’s in South LA – kinda far for most people.
- You are driving – it’s really hard to NOT have one or five margaritas when at La Barca. They’re just so delicious and refreshing. Call a taxi/Uber/Lyft, or save the dinner outing for a night when you can do so.
- You don’t like Mexican food – can’t help you there.
Yep….I’m out of excuses. Get your butt over to La Barca and have a delicious double strawberry blended marg for me!
Disclosure: This post is not associated with La Barca in any way. I received no compensation for this post.