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“Average to pretty good” 3 of 5 stars
Review of El :Picante

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El :Picante
37 east us 22, Maineville, OH 45039
513-583-1341
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Ranked #10 of 29 Restaurants in Maineville
Cuisines: Mexican
Restaurant details
Cincinnati, Ohio
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Average to pretty good”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2014

I hadn't been in this neck of the woods in years so was thrilled to find that there was something better than the previous tenant, Beef O'Brady's, in this spot. The restaurant was packed on a Friday night - to the point that I wondered what the fire Marshall might think.
My first impression at any Mexican restaurant is their salsa. This one was kind of disappointing, watery, not very flavorful unless you happened to get a chunk of onion or a piece of cilantro and certainly not spicy. 2 stars for the salsa.
My next criteria is the refried beans. This they passed with flying colors. Tasty refried beans can be few and far between so kudos to El Picante on this.
We shared a peach daquiri. Yuck. I took two sips and let my husband finish it. If you like a strong drink without much flavor besides the taste of inexpensive rum, you'll like this. If you like sweet, flavorful, fruity drinks in which you don't taste much alcohol, you're in my camp and you'll be disappointed.
One thing I've learned about local Mexican restaurants is that you have to try a place several times to get a true picture of their quality because often they aren't too consistent. This place is near my dad's house, so we'll be back to try again.

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
starhungry
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great Mexican food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2014

I am pretty picky about Mexican restaurants. The chains in the area, although numerous run from pretty darn good (El Rancho Grande and Abuelos) to godawful horrible (Fiesta Brava, Viva Tequila). I was a pretty staunch supporter of El Rancho Grande, new I liked their food and was reluctant to try somewhere new as I had had such poor experiences elsewhere. However, we moved to a home in 2011 that is literally right down the street from this restaurant so we gave it a chance. Thank goodness we tried it! So delicious, I now enjoy this even more than El Rancho. Servings are huge (can't finish the lunch fajita portions which comes with rice, beans, lettuce, sour cream, guac, salsa, etc) and prices are low. Margaritas are strong and yummy. Love that the best local chain Mexican restaurant is 3min from my home. After the success of this location, the owners opened up a new place called El Cholula, which i have not yet tried.

  • Visited April 2014
    • 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.

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