In the Mexican state of Oaxaca there’s a saying: “For everything bad, mezcal; for everything good, the same”.

For the team at El Publico, this saying couldn’t be more true. Set on opening a tequila bar, the crew has created a space for people to hang out, drink mezcal (“the godfather of tequila”) and eat street food.

The eclectically decorated split-level space ignores the clichés you’ve come to expect at Mexican restaurants. In place of sombreros and piñatas you’ll find a neon donkey and hand-painted skeletal murals. A DJ on weekends keeps the vibe undeniably fun, which means without a booking you might have to wait for your taco.

After several trips to Mexico spent visiting food growers, local chefs and major markets, the team created a menu that explores contemporary Mexican cuisine. From street corn with queso and chilli mayonnaise, to beef brisket coated in crispy banana batter with chipotle crema, the food shuns the greasy stigma synonymous with its Tex-Mex cousins.

El Publico also imports its own mezcal, so whatever the occasion, it could be time for a visit.

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Updated: December 20th, 2021

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