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“Authentic Mexican in the heart of japan, who would have thought!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of El Pancho

El Pancho
1-10-1 Shinsaibashisuji Chuo-ku | 8F Shinsaibashi Tower Bldg., Osaka 542-0085, Osaka Prefecture
+81 6-6241-0588
Website
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Ranked #1,117 of 8,728 Restaurants in Osaka
3.5 of 5 stars 17 Reviews
Cuisines: Mexican
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Barwon Heads, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Authentic Mexican in the heart of japan, who would have thought!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2014

The food was amazing! Authentic Mexican, not tex mex. I learnt that the manager/head chef has volunteered in Mexican restaurants and lived in Mexico for a year and he speaks English. His wife is Australian and really helpful for anyone who doesn't speak Japanese. (Like me!). The decorations are great and the place has a lot of atmosphere for a cosy restaurant. The only downside is you could make a reservation to save waiting, as it's really popular when we went. I had a great experience.

  • Visited June 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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17 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    4
    7
    2
    3
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Osaka
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“The only restaurant in Osaka with really bad service”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2013

The restaurant is always packed and you'll not get a table at the weekend if you haven't booked in advance. That is probably the reason they don't feel the need to bother with customer service.

If you are foreign, you'll often find yourself shoved in a squashed area furthest from the staff with other foriegners which feels a bit, well, weird to say the least. The tables are too close for comfort or privacy and it is very hard to attract the staff's attention to order subsequent drinks.

Why do I go? The burritos are good, very filling and good value at around 1,200 yen. Other dishes can be smaller and would end up as an expensive starter. The avocado fried rice and avocado salad is nice. Drinks are a little expensive.

I used to go maybe every six months for a burrito and just learned to just put up with the staff's attitude. I would recommend El Pancho's for an ex-pat visiting the area but not for a foreign tourist: the bad service would ruin a holiday meal. However, the new much smaller one in Q's Mall, Tennouji has the same menu and politer staff: that's where I go now.

For people complaining that its not authentic: this is a Mexican restuarant in JAPAN! What do you expect!

  • Visited June 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, DC
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“Eat here if you don't mind clearing your own plates”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2013

I consider myself able to get good service out of any place. In general, I ignore tripadvisor reviews that focus on service. But I have to write about this restaurant. I have never seen servers less attentive to customers than here. And I eat out - a lot. There were two for the entire restaurant and they only cared about two things: hanging out by the kitchen waiting for the food to run and clearing empty tables. I saw them all of twice. Once to take my order and once to deliver my food. No, actually I saw them a few times, trying to flag them down several. But to see you have to keep your eyes up and that was not happening. To get my bill I went to the kitchen window and asked for it. Do yourself a favor and eat anywhere but here. Food - as ok as it was - is not worth the anguish of experiencing such incompetence.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Osaka-shi, Osaka, Japan
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Mexican”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2013

Ok place for a quick Mexican fix but don,t expect to much! the atmosphere is great and take a marker and write on the wall! the staff can be a little slow on service if it is busy all in all its Ok! by me!

  • Visited February 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kyoto, Japan
Top Contributor
108 reviews 108 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
61 helpful votes 61 helpful votes
“Good food and atmosphere but the service and payment system needs improvement”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2013

While this place is a favorite amongst foreigners living in Japan as the food is good, the price decent and the atmosphere rocks, the staff can be quite rude when it comes to paying. They demand that the payment for everyone would be given together instead of each person paying for their meals separately as is often welcome everywhere else in Japan. I would regard this as bad service since its obvious the staff do not want to work extra in helping the costumers pay for their own meals, especially when the food is not izakaya style shared food but plates for each person. We still go, but its a hassle every time. prepare change if you go with friends.

Visited September 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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