They should have known.
Naming a restaurant Faux Pas Bistro was only going to result in an au revoir, and just six months later, we're now saying hola to Mercado on Third.
You may remember we pointed you toward their original Santa Monica location last year (and their glorious carnitas and dos gringas).
Mercado 2.0 is bigger, better, easter, and contains 100% more retractable roof patio.
Basically, it’s a 5,800 square-foot shrine to tequila and tacos with cognac-colored horseshoe booths, communal tables and white subway tiles, all mixing handsomely with a back room containing Diá de los Muertos-worthy murals.
Tying the room together? That'd be you and your date sitting under the stars, sipping dos gringas, tres leches, and quatro margaritas.
Also, Chef Jose Acevedo's insane alchemies, including crab-stuffed shrimp with serrano bearnaise, filet mignon with rajas poblanas and chipotle-peppercorn sauce, and a chile piquin-rubbed ribeye with jalapeño horseradish cream.
Oh yeah, and those mustard-guajillo beef ribs. They're why you're here, and why you're gonna come back.
Pro tip: they're magnificent, if a little messy. Just wipe your hands on an order of tacos pastor and you're golden.
Price: 3 (out of 4)
Noise: 3 (out of 4)
Best bets: Carnitas; dos gringas; best flan in the universe
Hot seat: The communal tables near the bar
The scene: Tequila-tinged patio party
Nearby: Sirena; Short Order; Fat Cow