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Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun

Tequila-slinging Mexican taco bar Caracara Cantina rolls into Tugun

For a little over two years, Burleigh Heads bar Lockwood has been luring the curious down a dark alleyway to drink whisky and cocktails by candlelight. This week, the owners of the popular speakeasy opened their newest venture – a Mexican tequila bar and taqueria in Tugun. Named after a sacred bird that was honoured by the Aztecs, Caracara Cantina offers diners and sippers rustic and authentic Mexican fare alongside a fine selection of tequila and mezcal.


The details
Caracara takes the space formerly occupied by Hidden Wine Bar and Cafe on Golden Four Drive, which is split across two venues – at the front is the bright and breezy street-facing cantina, and through a separate door at the rear you’ll find the dimly lit tequila bar. After securing the former cafe and bar site, it took Brenden Yeo and Zac Wright just a few short weeks to transform it into the coast’s newest Mexican dining den, shaping the space with peach hues, white tables and a forest of cacti.

To eat
The menu starts with bites like spiced bean dip with corn chips, grilled Padron peppers with a sweet red-pepper dipping sauce, ceviche of fresh local market fish, and roasted heirloom carrots with agave syrup. Authentic street-style tacos are the hero here, with the charred flour tortillas assembled with proteins like slow-braised pulled pork, spiced market fish and oven-baked dry-spiced pumpkin. The classic burrito is given a refreshing facelift at Caracara, with the blistering tortilla filled with spiced red beans, rice, slaw and a punchy herb salad before being wrapped and finished with a dollop of guacamole.


To drink
The street-front cantina slings a range of margaritas to suit all tastes, from a classic marg’ to a marmalade-infused breakfast margarita, as well as Mexican favourites like lageritas (classic margarita served tall and topped with Tecate lager) and micheladas (tequila, spicy tomato juice, citrus, spices and lager). Once you’ve finish chomping through tacos and sipping margaritas, stroll down the back into Caracara’s moody tequila den to taste your way through the sizeable collection. If you’ve ventured to Lockwood in Burleigh, you’ll know that Brenden and Zac are big on education – and while they have done a fine job of schooling locals about quality over quantity when it comes to booze, they’ve now tasked themselves with facilitating the tequila revival on the coast, one sip at a time.

For opening hours and contact details, scoot over to our Stumble Guide.

The Stumble Guide is our comprehensive Gold Coast dining guide with more than 870 places to eat, drink, shop and play.



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