Danny Bowien’s LES Mexican Restaurant Mission Cantina Has Take-out Burritos !

Image of a red tray filled with open-face soft shell tacos with beef, shrimp and chicken, topped with a white sauce and lettuce.

Chef Danny Bowien's NYC outpost of his successful San Francisco flagship Mission Chinese blew up two years ago when it opened in that eccentrically laid-out and amusingly decorated room on Orchard Street. The food was fiery and fantastic, the prices fair, the atmosphere exciting, and wait times for a table quickly became ridiculous. The location eventually proved untenable, and so Bowien shut it down and is currently seeking a new home for Mission Chinese (rumor has it that Battery Park City was in the running), but, in the meantime, we now have Bowien's "Mexican" joint, Mission Cantina, just up the block and currently serving some of the best, most interesting tacos in town.  

Image of the dimly lit interior of Mission Cantina on the Lower East Side, colored orange and blue, and filled with customers

Bold Flavors and Satisfying Combinations

I've gorged myself silly at Mission Cantina a few times since it opened late last November, and have never been anything but delighted with Bowien's bold flavors and satisfying combinations. Tacos make up the bulk of the MIssion Cantina menu, and just about every one is a winner. On a recent night the Cumin Lamb with smoked prune stole the show, but the Shrimp with Crispy Beef Tripe wasn't far behind. Also first-rate:

  • The earthy Hongos, or mushrooms;
  • The Pork Cheek with pickled peppers;
  • The Bitter Greens and Roasted Corn.

Bowien changes his combos frequently, but because they're pretty cheap (and you get two per order), the best thing to do is just order up a bunch of whatever he has going that night and share.

A green plate topped with fried Mexican food off the Danny Bowien's menu

More Explosive Flavor Than Any Other NYC Mexican Spot

Don't snooze of Bowien's other dishes though. I've never had his Whole Rotisserie Chicken, but people swear it's the best thing on the menu. Some of my highly recommended items are:

  • The Wings,
  • The Guac,
  • The superb Chicken Liver Tostada,
  • The gone-in-five-seconds Chicharrones with Pimento Cheese.

Now Bowien's doing burritos, too! They're California-style huge, with your choice of meat, lots of beans, tons of avocado, NO rice, and more explosive flavor than you'll find in the entire menu at many NYC Mexican spots. You can get these massive creations at dinner on a to-go basis only, but now that the weather's warm, they make for a perfect quick bite  to enjoy at one of NYC's destination parks or at those nearby benches on Allen Street before hitting a movie at the Sunshine Theater.

An image of a California styled burrito wrapped in tinfoil to-go style from Danny Bowien's Mexican restaurant

More Information: Mission Cantina

Mission Cantina is located on the corner of Stanton and Orchard Streets, and is open every day for lunch from 12:00 noon to 3:00 p.m., and for dinner from 5:30 and 12:00 midnight. The friendly staffers, fun music, and general party vibe make Mission Cantina almost as popular as Mission Chinese in its heyday, so don't expect to waltz right in a get seated during primetime. 

Inside Mission Cantina two employee's work the computer at the Take Out section of the restaurant

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