El Mercado Modern Cuisine

301 N. Spurgeon St.
Santa Ana, CA 92701
Best Of


  • Tues.-Sat., 5 p.m. -midnight Sun., 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Full bar
In El Mercado, chef Danny Godinez is literally offering the flavors of Mexico, one plate at a time. The menu--in what might be a subtle jab at Rick Bayless--is constructed to represent nearly all of Mexico’s states. Each dish hails from a specific region and organized so that as you read it, you progress from appetizers to main entrées, then to dessert. But like the chapters in a Lonely Planet guidebook, each entry is a new place to explore and discover. And when you actually get to the eating, you consume not only the cuisine of Mexico as most Americans have never had it, but also a lesson in the country’s diverse geography.

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