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“Excellent Mexican food, with great atmosphere!”

El Charro Cafe - The Original
Ranked #66 of 2,208 Restaurants in Tucson
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$ 0 - US$ 25
Cuisines: Mexican
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Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Child-friendly
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, After-hours, Lunch, Delivery, Reservations, Takeout
Description: Established in 1922, El Charro Cafe of Tucson, Arizona is The Nation's Oldest Mexican Restaurant in continuous operation by the same family. Featuring traditional Northern Mexico-Sonoran style and innovative Tucson-style Mexican Food, El Charro Cafe is truly as Gourmet Magazine wrote: "A Taste Explosion". We are innovators and originators and have proven this with our efforts in maintaining old world quality with new found concepts such as recipes lower in trans fat or designing dishes for those who need to dine gluten free! Whatever your needs, El Charro Cafe and family are prepared to show you that; "We are not the best because we are the oldest, We are the oldest because WE ARE THE BEST!"
Reviewed 6 April 2018

My teenaged son and I had a late lunch at El Charro this week. The weather was pleasant and we sat at a table on the railing facing the outside- very nice and good people watching.
I had a house Margarita (excellent) and we started with their made-tableside guacamole and the queso fundito melt, both were superb. I chose their #2 combination (grilled cage free soft chicken taco, Pollo El Charro enchilada & chicken tamal, served with refined beans and rice). It was also excellent, and the serving was so large I could not finish it all.
We shared a flan for dessert; it came with strawberry ice cream and whipped cream and was spectacular.
The service was very good and the staff polite and friendly.
We will go back!

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank TulaAtlanta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (2,330)
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140 - 144 of 2,330 reviews

Reviewed 6 April 2018

Visiting the Tucson area and El Charro was recommended as having "great Mexican food". It was a little out of the way during our travels, but we gave it a try for lunch. Located on a side street, in an old house built in 1895, the atmosphere looked promising and it was crowded for lunch -- a lot of cars with out of state license plates lining the street. Unfortunately, our visit was a disappointment. First of all, the food is actually Tex-Mex. After being seated (in a corner near the kitchen) we were ignored for quite some time. Once we were finally acknowledged and had our drink order taken, we went through a total of 4 waiters before our meal was done -- staff just kept changing for some reason, and with each change, there seemed to be confusion regarding our order. All in all, it was not a good lunch experience. In an effort to end the review on a positive note, the flan was excellent. Can't recommend El Charro and won't be back.

Thank doclexus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018 via mobile

We are not Mexican food lovers but had to try once and were not disappointed. Lots of atmosphere, great service though we were there a monday night at 4h30 ans the food sas delicious. I ordered a burros with shredded chicken covered with cheese only as I am not a sauce person and it was delicious. My partner had the enchilada but there was a little too much sauce on it for his taste. We loved the experience and recommend it but we were not converted to that kind of food .

Thank LouiseB4695
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018

Wonderful old restaurant with great food...my huaband said it was the best meal of our trip. It was reccommended by Tucson natives and both the ambiance and the food were terrific.

Thank jnbeach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2018 via mobile

This place used to be fantastic. The carne seca is still good, but overall quality is slipping. The chicken mole is below average. The food doesn’t pop anymore. Still a fun place to eat, but they seem to be resting on their laurels and historic charm, and getting lazy with the food. Be careful, you may be a Tucson institution but if your food isn’t going, that can change.

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

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