When misconceptions run rampant you have to set people straight, like Columbus did with the earth being flat, or surely something else that wasn't an accidental byproduct of lust for sweet, sweet spice. For a resto setting the record straight on legit Mexican food, hit Talavera.
From the Mexico City minds behind Jaguar Ceviche Spoon Bar, Talavera's a well-appointed, reasonably priced Mexican joint fully devoted to the homeland, with modern Central American art juxtaposed against colorful splashes of traditional Talavera pottery, plus grub going way beyond standard Tex-Mex, ranging from the refined dishes of high-end Mexico City restaurants, to old-time specialties from street markets and "hill towns" where everyone annoyingly wears Duke jerseys and plays the piano really well. The menu's beyond vast, with smaller items including seafood (shrimp or snapper ceviche w/orange & lime juices), and various Mexican cheese dishes, like crispy fried cheese w/green salsa & chipotle flakes, and fondue pots of melted Oaxaca & Gouda combo'd w/ tortillas, chorizo, 'shrooms, and epazote: a lemony Mexican herb also known as pig weed, goosefoot, and wormseed, so now you know why they use the Spanish name. Larger plates span Mexican traditions as well, like ancho chilies stuffed w/ lobster, egg-white batter, black bean & tomato sauce; a group of mole dishes, like Coloradito from Oaxaca w/dried chilies, herbs, spices & assorted nuts over beef short rib; and huaraches, flip-flop-shaped corn flatbreads filled with black bean puree, salsa verde, goat cheese, and meats (tuna, salmon, skirt steak), which're grilled after being given a mild guajillo chili rub, leaving you with the embarrassment of eating a meal that got more action than you.
As for fun-liquids, there's Mexican beers like Pacifica, Bohemia, and the hard-to-find Victoria, Tabasco/Worcestershire-aided micheladas, and artisan mezcals like Los Danzantes, Armados Anejo, and Tecuán, which offers a super smokey nose with tar notes, and is infused with a damiana flower, though you'll have to feed your date a shocking amount of it, if you don't want to go home and watch the sweet, sweet Spice channel.