Check out these Philly area restaurants to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

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Friday, October 7, 2022
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It's Hispanic Heritage Month, so there's no better excuse to get some education about the cultures that fuel some of the area's best restaurants.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- It's Hispanic Heritage Month, so there's no better excuse to get some education about the cultures that fuel some of the area's best restaurants.

We're trying some of the best Latin restaurants around!

Autana is an authentic Venezuelan BYOB restaurant in Ardmore run by a father-daughter team, Chef Levi Harnandez and his daughter Maria Jose.

They describe Venezuelan cooking as Caribbean food using plantains, cornmeal, and meats. It goes perfectly with the cozy atmosphere of the space.

A staple at any Venezuelan event are the Tequenos. Small roll-ups of crispy dough filled with paisa, which is Venezuelan cheese. I had a traditional Arepa, or cornmeal sandwich, that's typically stuffed with whatever you want. I got lucky with shredded beef and gouda cheese.

Maria says she has perfected her Key Lime Pie recipe since she learned how to make it at 6 years old, so trying it was a no-brainer. She was right. It was perfectly sweet and tart with flavor coming from the Venezuelan cookie used for the crust.

Alma Del Mar sits on 9th Street in the heart of the Italian Market. Alma and her family are from Puebla Mexico. Two years ago they decided to open a restaurant with traditional Mexican dishes and Alma's personal flair mixed in.

The space is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and since this was my first meal of the day, I sprang for the early bird menu. That's because Alma took classic eggs benedict and added chorizo and eggs on top of a ricotta cheese potato torta.

She uses her mom's recipe for steak chilaquiles, and says it's her favorite thing to make. The baguette tres leches French toast went well with some strong coffee from Honduras, and even though I could probably vibrate home, I had more to taste!

If you bring your own tequila they will supply you with the most perfect margarita mix made with fresh fruit from Alma's sister's fruit stand right outside.

Buena Onda is a casual baja taqueria, and it just opened a new location in Radnor. The name means good vibes, and the concept was thought up by Ecuadorian restaurateur Jose Garces.

He fed me the loaded pork al pastor bowl with fried garbanzo beans and an order of the tequila lime glazed grilled shrimp tacos with chipotle mayo and homemade flour tortilla. I washed it down with a spicy pineapple mango sopressa and munched on a warm caramel stuffed churro for dessert.

Check out Part 2!