Guadalajara is known for its tempting culinary experiences, whether it’s traditional local fare such as tortas ahogadas (“drowned sandwiches”) or international creations from the region’s top chefs. Within the last year, the destination has welcomed an even more diverse array of eateries, providing further opportunities to delight one’s palate in Mexico’s second-largest city.
Here are the latest must-try restaurants in Guadalajara.
New Hotel Restaurants in Guadalajara
The debut of new hotels in Guadalajara has also resulted in the opening of several noteworthy new dining venues. I enjoyed an especially photo-worthy meal at Querida Luna (“dear moon”), which opened in November 2022 at the equally new Voco Guadalajara Neruda, an IHG Hotel. One side of the venue opens onto a large balcony, offering beautiful views of the chic Providencia neighborhood, especially at sunset. The view and handsome I are complemented by a mouthwatering menu: I became acquainted with cocina mestiza — what the eatery calls dishes that incorporate both traditional practices and contemporary flair (I especially enjoyed the tortilla soup, made with guajillo chile broth and served with crunchy pork cracklings).
Also new in the city’s hotel culinary scene is Zibu, which recently opened at the new JW Marriott Hotel Guadalajara. Dedicated foodies may already be familiar with the Zibu name; this Mexican-Thai fusion brand has devoted followings in Acapulco and San Miguel de Allende. Headed by founder and celebrity chef Eduardo Palazuelos, this contemporary restaurant serves sophisticated delicacies such as vegetarian ceviche, octopus carpaccio and crunchy tuna tartare. (Sunday brunch is an especially popular time to reserve a table.)
Restaurants With International Appeal
Guadalajara has always been a city with a hip and international vibe, and that’s reflected in the destination’s range of new restaurants. Consider Octo Restaurante, an eye-catching new eatery headed by Oscar Garza, whom local media outlet “Chic Magazine” calls a “rockstar of the kitchen.” Located in Lafayette, a trendy neighborhood near multiple boutique hotels, Octo’s refined, seafood-oriented menu includes sea bass in squid sauce and salmon Wellington.
Among the newest options for Japanese cuisine, meanwhile, is Senor Tanaka, which serves tasty specialties in a stylish building created by famed architect Alejandro de la Rosa. First established in Monterrey — and soon to open a branch in Cancun — the Guadalajara outpost of Senor Tanaka serves dishes from hamachi tacos and baked cod to truffle salmon sashimi, king crab salad and spicy tuna rolls.
Travelers favoring European fare will find several new options in Guadalajara, as well. There’s Pamplo Restaurante — which mixes Spanish, French, Greek, Italian and Middle Eastern flavors in its Mediterranean menu — and Tintoretto Restaurante, which combines Italian cuisine with Mexican touches. Barbarella, meanwhile, serves Italian dishes made with imported ingredients.
The upscale neighborhood of Andares, which is known for its high-end shopping and dining, has also welcomed several new culinary venues within the past year. Among the most celebrated is Cuerno, the latest branch of a luxury restaurant chain that specializes in premium cuts of grilled meat (the company has other locations in Mexico City and Monterrey). Nearby, Colmillo brings a decidedly different culinary style to Andares: namely, street food inspired by dishes found in northern Mexico, Los Angeles and even New York City. The items at Colmillo feature an upscale spin, with options such as an oyster bar and tacos made with prime Black Angus imported from Nebraska.
Something for Everyone
Great food doesn’t have to carry a hefty price tag in Guadalajara. I enjoyed an economical-yet-delicious meal at Taquearte, a casual taco chain that expanded last year into Guadalajara from its Mexico City base. The rib-eye and al pastor tacos may not cost much, but they sure are tasty. The eatery, located in the Providencia neighborhood, has indoor and outdoor seating and a full bar.
Visitors from the U.S. who can’t get by without a taste from home, take note: Shake Shack debuted here in February 2023, in the adjacent city of Zapopan. The venue features the brand’s usual offerings, such as the Shack Burger and Chicken Shack, as well as exclusive, only-in-Mexico items like a marzipan milkshake, which is made with vanilla frozen custard mixed with marzipan and topped with marzipan pieces.