Mexican street food you won’t typically find around Sydney is the main event at Coyoacan Social, the third eatery from social enterprise Plate It Forward (Colombo Social, Kabul Social). The tasty – and worthy – Mexican restaurant opened in a bright orange shipping container in 2023.

Its head chef, Roman Cortes, was born in Mexico City, and the venue’s mission is inspired by his recovery from addiction. For every meal Coyoacan Social serves, a meal is donated to the treatment centre in Mexico City where Cortes took his first steps towards recovery, and to similar centres in Sydney.

The biggest hit is the birria taco – an adobe-marinated beef taco which comes with a dipping sauce of rich beef consomme that’s slow-cooked overnight and infused with coriander, garlic and spices. The tacos are Tiktok-famous, and are also from Cortes’s grandfather’s home state of Jalisco.

Another of their hits is the flautusdeep (“flauta” means flute in Spanish). It’s a long, tube-shaped tortilla that’s deep-fried, then smothered in cream, cheese, salsa verde, lettuce and your choice of protein – 12-hour slow-cooked beef brisket; smoky chicken tinga; pulled pork marinated in achiote (a paste of annatto seeds, cumin, coriander, oregano, cloves, garlic and pepper); and nopalitos (cactus, capsicum, charred corn and onion).

All that spice calls for a cooling beverage. The drinks list offers three house-made, traditional combos. There’s a non-alcoholic Margarita, the horchata (a creamy rice milk infused with cinnamon) and the Jamaica (a hibiscus flower iced tea). All are booze-free.

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Updated: December 22nd, 2023

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