Walk by the kitchen at this Columbia Heights Puebla-inspired restaurant and you'll see a chef forming corn masa into tortillas and cooking them on the griddle. It's the attention to detail that makes this Mexican spot a neighborhood favorite. The menu may be concise, but every dish is made fresh and with great care. Even the green salsa that hits the table as soon as you take your seat is a standout. Start with the tacos—lighter than traditional tortillas—typically layered with crispy-edged, juicy barbacoa and red chili oil-flavored chorizo. Follow that up with the regional specialty—mole poblano with tender chicken and a slightly sweet, slightly kicky Puebla-style sauce.
Good news for suburban dwellers—there is a sister location in Maryland.