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Mexican food in Europe? Sí, un poco.

Eating local foods is one of the best parts of traveling.  But if you’re away for a long time you might start to crave some of your favorite foods from home.  Since I’ve lived most of my life on the West Coast, and about half of that time in California, Mexican food has been a regular part of my diet for as long as I can remember.  And there’s something about summer that turns up my Mexican food cravings.  When the weather is hot, I could easily survive on bowls of crispy corn tortilla chips, spicy salsa and cold beer… with a few tacos al carbon, and a quesadilla thrown in every now and then for good measure.

In France, the local palate is not very accustomed to the spices and heat that are key to great Mexican food.  You’ll find a few attempts here, but so far I’ve found the flavors to be pretty tepid and unsatisfying.  And beware the “French Taco”, which is more of a square kebab, and tastes nothing like a taco.  On the other hand, if you head to Spain you’ll have better luck, as it is home to quite a few Latin American immigrants.  I love Taquerías Tamarindo, a great little spot in L’Eixample, Barcelona.  And in Alicante, I found a couple of Mexican places, but only Chili-Rom served up authentic flavors.  I didn’t really expect to be able to find Mexican food in Europe, and it was a surprise to find it in Cornwall, England, of all places.  Habaneros, a little place by the water in Falmouth, is part of a small Cornwall-based chain created by some friends who got a taste for Mexican food on their travels.  Now if they could only open a few locations in France…

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