Hidden down a Paddington backstreet, Don Pedros is serving up Southern Cali-style Mexican food in some seriously festive surrounds. It's run by Californian Chef Juan Alvarez, who found the space by chance when holidaying in the area.
"I loved the neighbourhood," says Alvarez. "But I wanted something bright and vibrant, and a place that would accommodate families and groups, alongside a place that you could have a date... and Victoria Street in the backstreet was the perfect spot."
The casual eatery has garnered a sizeable following since opening. And a few dishes have quickly become crowd favourites, too. Here, tacos take centre stage, and the best versions include the soft shell crab — which comes topped with pineapple salsa and lime mayo — and the slow-cooked lamb shoulder with chimichurri and slaw. You can also opt for the build-your-own taco platter, which comes with all the fixings.
Alvarez suggests pairing any taco with sides of the house guacamole and the chargrilled corn — the latter is rolled in queso and served with chipotle aoili. Other house specialties include pork ribs, seasonal ceviche and churros for dessert.
For drinks, margaritas are (unsurprisingly) the name of the game at Don Pedros. The chilli-infused version is especially well done, as are the coconut, and blood orange and grapefruit varieties. Apart from all the margs, there's a mix of Mexican imports and local craft brews on offer behind the bar, too.
But you don't even need a drink to get into the festive spirit here. The vibrant 60-seater offers brightly coloured decor alongside floral table clothes, a turquoise tiled bar, hanging greenery and other typical 'fiesta'-style furnishings.
Speaking of good times, mark your calendar for $5 tacos and tap beers all night on Tuesdays and 4–6pm happy hour on Fridays — with all tacos and beers will cost just $4–6, depending on what time you arrive. Yep, we can't think of a better way to ring in the weekend, either.