Bar Amá

118 W. Fourth St.
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Critics' Pick
Best Of
Bar Am&aacute +

Anne Fishbein Fideo with octopus and kielbasa, shrimp broth and pepitas


  • Mon.-Thu., 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. & 5:30-11 p.m.; Fri., 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. & 5:30 p.m.-mid.; Sat., 11:30 a.m.-mid.; Sun., 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.
  • Vegetarian Friendly
  • Lunch, Dinner
  • Beer/Wine, Full bar
Los Angeles has a lot of pride when it comes to our Mexican food, so whenever our friends return from SXSW extolling the virtues of Tex-Mex, it’s not uncommon to deliver a skeptical side-eye. In recent years we’ve seen some expats from the Lone Star state mosey up to our coast, like Home­State’s decent breakfast tacos to Los Feliz, but Josef Centeno’s ode to Tejano cuisine is more our vibe. While Bar Amá looks to Texas for influence, it has a style all its own. From the savory short rib chalupa with tangy cabbage slaw to the Tex-Mex fried chicken, which is actually a deep-fried Cornish game hen dusted with cumin, the menu is heavy but incredibly delicious. Slow-roasted carnitas tacos and enchiladas are great, as is to be expected, but the real gem of the menu is the hearty cauliflower with cilantro pesto, cashews and cotija. Wash it all down with craft beer or the signature cocktails, which often pair citrus and tequila, and you’ll feel ready to ride any bull the day puts in your way. If you’re feeling brave, there’s the big bowl of molten queso and crisp chips, which, if Friday Night Lights is to be believed, is sacrosanct in homes from the Panhandle to the Rio Grande. You don’t mess with Texas, but we’re glad Centeno did anyway. —Drew Tewksbury
Read our full review.

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