Best Tex-Mex - 2012
El Ranchito may not bill itself as a Tex-Mex restaurant, but there's a Tex-Mex section on the menu with tacos, burritos and enchiladas. The fajitas turn heads with a trail of smoke and steam wafting behind the cast-iron plate like an old jalopy with bad valves, and most things are flanked by go-to rice and beans. Semantics aside, this place serves up all the classics you expect when dining at a Tex-Mex restaurant, with lots of other dishes waiting to tempt you out of your comfort zone. Try the cabrito, grilled baby goat you can strip clean from the bones before using the meat to stuff warm pliable tortillas. Wash it down with enough of their margaritas that you can really join the party. The mariachi band here plays loudly as they bounce from table to table and stir up the crowd. And if that's not festive enough for you, come back when an Elvis impersonation competition turns the whole place into Las Vegas meets the Mission.