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“Mexican Food and a Hidden Bar”
Review of El Rey

El Rey
Ranked #535 of 4,717 Restaurants in Philadelphia
Restaurant details
Reviewed 21 February 2018

We were on a quest for hidden bars in Philly. I'll leave it hidden, and you can look for it......Our intentions were to come here and get on the list for the bar afterwards, but we were in heaven. We were pleasantly surprised at our good fortune that El Rey's drinks and food were an added bonus!
As we waited for our table, we imbibed on a couple of different margaritas. My first one used some lavender, I believe, in it and was wonderful. My eyes were entertained by the decor and lights, while we sipped our cocktails. Once we got to our table, we were put on "the list" for the hidden bar that would be waiting for us after we ate. In the meantime, we had the queso, guacamole, ceviches, and a couple of their tacos. The food was so great, it was hard to NOT come back here the next night. The wait staff was friendly and helpful, as well. Our next treat was our trip through the kitchen and back stairway to the Ranstead Room. Try these both out! You won't be disappointed.

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2  Thank Stephanie P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (69)
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6 - 10 of 69 reviews

Reviewed 28 January 2018 via mobile

I've been here before, it's a kitschy throwback diner that is very popular with the University students and locals. Food is good, happy hour prices are great. No parking and not really wheelchair accessible.
Staff is always young, fun, cute, and efficient. This visit I have to say the server was as always pleasant and extremely efficient and busy busy busy. While he was working his butt off three (3) "Mgmt" were standing there talking and offering no assistance. Felt bad for the guy. After two of the three wondered off the remaining guy did pitch in and help.

Thank Ron J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 January 2018

This place is full of character. It's not for those looking for cheap and cheerful Mexican. There's a charge for chips and salsa. There are no rice and beans together (you have to order two sides $$). Still, the guacamole was tasty and the Chihuahua cheese was delish. Skip the quesadillas -- they were more like tacos. And the chilaquilies were an insult to the original with rubbery chicken. I had heard it's good for happy hour, not meals and I can see the truth in this.

Thank secondfloor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 January 2018

This place is in downtown Philly, and it serves very good Mexican food at a reasonable price. We came here for lunch on MLK Day. It's not much to look at on the outside, but the inside has all kinds of vintage posters and pinatas, and it's kind of dim as opposed to screamingly loud like many Mexican joints. There is a $10 lunch special that includes nachos and excellent salsa, a soup or salad and an entree. I got butternut squash soup, which was pretty good, and huevos rancheros, which was good. My wife ordered mushroom soup and chicken tostadas, which were excellent, and my son got the best order, brisket tacos. The service was great, the green salsa superior, and the bill was just over $40 (with one drink, my wife and i had water). All in all, a very pleasant and tasty lunch.

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Thank martroon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 November 2017

Not Mexican. The staff are rude and unhelpful. The menu is sad. The food is borderline. Very strange place. It's like an old pub that has tried to become a Mexican place but it's a big fail.

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Thank Charles4564
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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