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El Cactus

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104 1st Avenue, Coralville, IA 52241-2602
(319)354-0444
Today
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Open now
All hours
Hours:
Mon - Thu 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Fri 11:00 am - 10:30 pm
Sat 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
More Info
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29 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 29: English reviews
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

This place is exactly a run of the mill Mexican place in California. But its simply the best one I've tried in Iowa. That's exactly what you get when there are actually real-live Mexicans running the place! The steak is pretty good, and the salsa is top notch! i recommend bringing family and friends! Try the flautas! (A flauta is... More 

Helpful?
Thank David K
Iowa City, Iowa
Level Contributor
131 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

This is a great place to grab lunch. My wife and I love to try the various combination platters. The service is friendly, the food is hot. The enchiladas are very flavorful. The portions are perfect. Filling but not to the point you are uncomfortably full. The decor is cozy but festive.

Helpful?
Thank Francisco O
Level Contributor
18 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2016 via mobile

By far the best Mexican food I've eaten in iowa city! The salsa is SO GOOD! The margaritas are also very tasty. On Tuesdays they have .99 tacos. I mean how can you go wrong with that? The service isn't always the fastest, but if you're looking to get a great lunch or dinner this is the place!

Helpful?
Thank Seth V
Coralville, IA
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2016

We live in Coralville and frequent this place. It is our favorite! Great food, atmosphere, drinks, service!

Helpful?
Thank Vicki H
Iowa City, Iowa
Level Contributor
29 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2015

We used to frequent this place about once a month,then switched our Mexican cravings to Blue Azul, North of this place about 1/2 mile. The food is ordinary, burritos, tacos and the like. Menu is as expected. Prices are low although there have been increases is some items since this past summer.

Helpful?
Thank RichSH20
Iowa City, Iowa
Level Contributor
53 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2014

We enjoy the chips & salsa. The food is good, not great. The staff seem friendly. I wish they served fountain drinks, Dr. Pepper or Mr. Pibb.

Helpful?
Thank Tiffany T
Level Contributor
34 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2014 via mobile

Was in this place twice and the first a customer complained of a fly in his rice and waiter came over with a spoon and removed fly from tic on customers plater and then said it's ok amigo. I fished it out for u the 2nd time in I watched a roach crawl a across floor I'm not going back... More 

Helpful?
Thank oriole1129
Iowa
Level Contributor
434 reviews
213 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 130 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2014 via mobile

El Cactus is our local goto place for Mexican. They have all the standard dishes you expect, and they are well done. They also have some less typical dishes including mole, gorditas, and some seafood dishes. Great margaritas too.

Helpful?
Thank IaTravel
Cape May, New Jersey
Level Contributor
23 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2014

Traveling I-80 West, I wanted something close to hotel and having good reviews on Trip Advisor. Although not a large number of reviews to date I especially liked "where the locals eat". We have found those to be very good places. We were promptly seated and warm chips & salsa immediately arrived to table. Our drink orders were promptly taken... More 

Helpful?
Thank R W
Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 10, 2014

This place is fantastic! The service is always excellent and they have the best margaritas and pollo loco I've ever had at a Mexican restaurant. Homemade salsa is also very good. Became our regular place when I was in college and I always make it a point to return and eat here anytime I come back to Iowa City.

Helpful?
Thank Back2Back00

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    4 of 5 stars
    Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    4 of 5 stars
Cuisine
Mexican
Meals
Lunch, Dinner
Restaurant features
Takeout, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Good for
Dining on a budget
Open Hours
Monday
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Tuesday
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Wednesday
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Thursday
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Friday
11:00 am - 10:30 pm
Saturday
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 104 1st Avenue, Coralville, IA 52241-2602
  • Location: United States  >  Iowa (IA)  >  Coralville
  • Phone Number: (319)354-0444

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from El Cactus staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?