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“Unique and very good!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El Carajo

El Carajo
2465 S.W. 17th Avenue, Miami, FL 33145
305.856.2424
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Ranked #136 of 3,655 Restaurants in Miami
Cuisines: Spanish
Dining options: Reservations, Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations, Late Night
Miami
Top Contributor
88 reviews 88 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
“Unique and very good!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2013

We happened to be in the neighborhood where I grew up in which is South of Little Havana (In Miami) as it is called. And had heard about this place several times and decided to try it.
Don't let the location fool you. This great little gem is inside toward the back of a BP Gas station.
When you walk inside, you will find the bakery first and the restaurant is just a few steps further in.
If you like Spanish Tapas you will not be disappointed. The decoration is pleasant and closed off to the front with painted frescos and faux second floor balcony painting on the walls.
The food is very good. We had the mushrooms and chorizo in a red vino sauce and wanted to order another! It was very tasty. We also had the grilled Corvina in mustard sauce with shrimp and it was excellent.
The Manager came by to our table to make sure everything was fine and even though we had a small problem it was corrected and we were treated to a comp glass of wine while we waited. I ordered the BonBon after our lunch, which is espresso coffee served with two different types of milk in a layered fashion which was the best I've had. Stir it and drink up. Very yummy!
Although we did not have desserts, you can view them as you walk in by the bakery and they looked fabulous.
Great service and good food with affordable prices in a very unexpected location.
We were very surprised and will definitely return! Everyone should give this place a try!

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112 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    40
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Miami, Florida
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“El Carajo restaurant.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 13, 2013 via mobile

This place is very unique. Is inside a gas station, you never would think that you will find such a great eating place inside a gas station. Food is really good. Neww to try the " all meat plate. Chirizos al vino are superb. Overall this place is great.

  • Visited December 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
“Very good food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 22, 2013

I recently had dinner at El Carajo during a visit to Miami. It is my third visit to this restaurant and first review. This is the first time I ordered an entree meal.
El Carajo has a unique setting in what appeared to be the convenience store of a gas station. The gas station is still in operation. Parking is limited.
It has an extensive inventory of wine from just about everywhere. The biggest selection appears to be Spanish. You pick the one you like and they charge a $10 cork fee.
They have a large selection of tapas. I have had the garlic shrimp (excellent), codfish croquets (good), Spanish omelet (very good), and crabmeat crepe (very good). I ordered the cordero (lamb) which was an off the menu special. It was cooked in a light brown sauce with a red peppers, garlic, and onions. It was very tender and tasty. The meal came with 2 side orders from a choice of many. I ordered white rice and steamed asparagus. Overall, the meal was very good.
For wine, I had Juan Gil (I think it was the Jumilla red), a fairly inexpensive Spanish wine, which was very good.
For desert, I had crema Catalalana (light Spanish custard with hard caramel glaze toping). Also very good.
The restaurant is reasonably priced. It is rather small, and it fills up quickly. Highly recommend reservations, even during the week.
I’ll be back.

  • Visited November 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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MIAMI
Top Contributor
818 reviews 818 reviews
471 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 217 cities Reviews in 217 cities
320 helpful votes 320 helpful votes
“Hidden gem”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2013

This place is in the back of a BP service station and convenience store, so you have to know it is here. It is a cozy and intimate small dining room. Wine and beer selections are huge and moderately priced with just a small surcharge. So first, you choose your beverage and bring it to the table. Then you unroll your menu and choose from tapas ( small plates) or full entree like salmon or flank steak chimichurri. Main courses are accompanied with 2 sides of your choice (like sweet plantains, asparagus, roasted potatoes, rice). Restaurant attracts mostly a Latin crowd so restaurant gets busy later in the evening. Parking is in the service station lot. Reservations are a must!

  • Visited November 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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London, United Kingdom
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Unusual but good!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2013

We saw El Carajo in the Time magazine top ten Miami and were intrigued by this restaurant in a petrol station. It really is in the station itself, not next to it or behind it. A tiny restaurant in the back with maybe half a dozen tables. It has a bakery and an impressive wine cellar at liquor-store prices; there is a $10 corkage charge. The food was pretty good, especially the ceviche, and the wine that we chose, an Agentinian Malbec, was good also. We had fun and enjoyed the experience but I wouldn't say it was incredible. It's quite a long way from our hotel on South Beach, maybe 20-30 minutes in a taxi. A one-off for us I expect although I wouldn't object to going back.

  • Visited November 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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