Born and raised in Mexico City, marine biologist-turned-chef Daniella Guevara Munoz is known for some of the best Mexican dishes in South Australia.

She moved to Australia after her husband – and fellow marine biologist – Kor van Dijk was invited to Townsville for a job. In Australia Guevara Munoz was disappointed at the lack of authentic Mexican cuisine and, unhappy to settle with Tex-Mex alternatives, hosted supper club pop-ups from her home.

Guevara Munoz opened La Popular Taqueria in 2017. The name is a nod to Sector Popular in Mexico City (the neighbourhood where Guevara Munoz grew up) and the venue was soon hugely popular with the local Mexican community. The authentic recipes will also feature in a cookbook Guevara Munoz is due to publish next year.

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The Port Adelaide-based chef sat down with Broadsheet to chat about her favourite cafes, bakeries and restaurants in her local area; the local suppliers she can’t cook without; and where to go if you find yourself in Mexico City with a hangover.

What’s your go-to for a quick takeaway?

Mother India Kitchen on Port Road. It’s a hidden takeaway shop in Alberton. They don’t hold back on the spice, and I love them for that.

And for a drink and snacks?

10 Gallon Hat is a new Texas-inspired bar in Port Adelaide. It’s got a great selection of bourbon to ensure a guaranteed good night out. We need more places like this in the Port to get the place buzzing.

What’s the best food close to where you live?

Tiki’s Thai Cuisine on Military Road is our go-to for Thai at the moment. It’s a welcome little addition to the area.

And where is the best coffee?

Easy. Dutch Coffee Lab. It’s across the road from La Popular Taqueria and is where everyone down the Port gets their beans as they are a roaster as well as a cafe. My hot tip? Get your coffee with some speculaas cake. I love it!

How about a meal with a big group?

We went to Etica the other day with some friends and did the “feed me” menu and had a great time. Beautiful quality food, delicious and generous, perfect for enjoying with the ones you love.

What’s your favourite dish at your restaurant?

This is a tough one. I’ll start with my love of good tortillas. I know it’s not a dish but it’s the base of pretty much everything we do at the restaurant. It takes us two days to make a batch for the week. My favourite taco is the cochinita pibil. I love the deep flavours, and every time I pull the tray out of the oven, I must make myself a taco. I adore the fatty part of the skin.
A recent special that I go back to is chilaquiles with beef, corn chips, salsa roja with a bit of cream and barbequed steak.

Is there a hidden gem you think is underrated?

There’s a hidden place in the Port called Lipson Collective where resident baker, Paul, makes sourdough and the family bakery, Butter Canteen, handles the baked goods. They both are really good. And it is truly a hidden gem, you need Google Maps to find it!

What’s your go-to hangover feed?

Unfortunately, this restaurant is not in Adelaide, but Mi Compa Chava (in Coyoacan, Mexico City) has amazing fresh seafood. To cure your hangover, you order a Vuelve a la Vida (“come back to life”) with a cold beer. It’s a whole lot of shellfish in a massive cocktail that sets you right.

Tell us about a local producer you can’t stop thinking about?

Bullcreek Organic Garlic Farm. Don’t tell anyone but this is where we source our tomatillos. You can get their produce at various farmers’ markets around the place and their tomatillos are the best we’ve found in Australia. I guess the secret’s out now.

Where would you take someone you want to impress?

Muni! The food is beautiful and made with so much care.