When people think of Atwells Avenue in Providence, it would seem that they would usually picture romantic Italian meals by candlelight, thin-crust pizza before events at the Dunkin' Donuts Center, and dessert and cappuccino under the stars in the lovely DePasquale Square. But there are certainly other reasons to head to this bustling road that cuts through the Federal Hill area, and one of those reasons is a Mexican dining spot called Restaurant Mexico Garibaldi, which is truly one outstanding place to eat.
Mexico Garibaldi is located toward the western end of Atwells Avenue, a few minutes and a world away from the hustle and bustle Federal Hill, which is the Little Italy section of Providence. Sitting in a fairly quiet (compared to Federal Hill, anyway) part of town that is home to a large Hispanic population, Restaurant Mexico Garibaldi is unknown by many, and very easy to miss even if you drive by it. It is a small, attractive restaurant that has a handful of tables inside its cheery, festive interior. The waitstaff is friendly and accommodating, and the clientele generally seems to be mostly locals as well as serious foodies who have discovered this dining spot.
The food at Restaurant Mexico Garibaldi is simply fabulous, with interesting entrees such as potato quesadillas (not very spicy, but delicious), shredded goat meat, pork tamales, enchiladas with mole sauce (some of the best mole sauce this writer has had), and fried beef tongue. Also, the tortilla chips that come with every meal are excellent, as are the red and green salsas that come with them.
So is Restaurant Mexico Garibaldi in the running for the best Mexican restaurant in New England? Well, perhaps. There is some pretty stiff competition out there, including El Sarape in Braintree and Taqueria La Mexicana in Somerville. But Mexico Garibaldi is right up there with the heavy hitters of Mexican cuisine in the region, and a terrific option for diners who happen to be on Atwells Avenue in Providence and have a hankering for something other than Italian food.
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