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“Memorable, Enjoyable Dinner in Authentic Mexican Cliffside Estate”

El Palomar de los Gonzalez
Ranked #78 of 1,028 Restaurants in Puerto Vallarta
Price range: $15 - $90
Cuisines: Mexican, International
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Large groups, Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Delivery, Reservations
Suburbs Of Philadelphia
Level 5 Contributor
74 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“Memorable, Enjoyable Dinner in Authentic Mexican Cliffside Estate”
Reviewed December 30, 2013

We booked El Palomar de los Gonzalez for our last evening in Puerto Vallarta. Two adults and two teenagers. Dinner was scheduled for the 6:30 sunset… unfortunately it rained lightly however, I'd have to say that the rain coming down and channeling through the bamboo water tubes and then cascading over the edge to the pool below gave the effect of eating in a grotto. It was actually quite relaxing and enjoyable. The rain ultimately stopped and we were treated to the pink and blue sunset show that is framed magnificently between the hand-hewed wooden beams that support the entire open air Hacienda that is El Palomar de los Gonzalez.

We arrived by taxi -- which as you will see during your visit is an experience all by itself -- straight up the hills and then through the narrow side streets to the restaurant that's precariously perched on the mount side. We were ushered and escorted into the restaurant to by two young (like 8) men who were dressed very smartly and were delightfully respectful and charming as they assisted the ladies from the cab down the slightly damp roadway. Very charming young men.

We entered and were immediately absorbed into the warmth and welcoming restaurant. Their are several levels that all open to the sweeping vista view of Banderas Bay. Plan to arrive for sunset and enjoy the show. As the day turns to night, the show changes from skyline to twinkling mountainside lights of the homes and buildings nestled in the foothills of Puerto Vallarta and beyond.

The Service was best described as unpretentious, attentive, knowledgeable, friendly and a genuine pride in the restaurant. For appetizers, we loved the Tortilla soup and the table-side prepared Caesar salad made with whole pieces of lettuces, expertly arranged and served with a smile. My shrimp cocktail was delicious which including a dipping sauce that was very flavorful.
Shrimps were crisp and chilled and very fresh.

Dinner entrees: Filet for me. Done to perfection with an excellent mushroom sauce on the side. Mahi Mahi for my wife. Chicken Normandie and a chimichanga (yes, believe it or not) rounded out the dinner. Everyone enjoyed their entree and the food and presentation was super.

The chocolate cake and ice-cream for dessert worked. Probably might have liked to see a dessert tray or a little more variety -- but honestly, the whole experience was so good.

Oh-- nice wine selection (for Mexico). The Chilean reds work very well with most dishes is my finding.

Lastly, we had the fortunate timing to meet the host, Mr. Gonzalez, on the way out and found him to be as genuine and welcoming as the entire restaurant and staff.

This restaurant belongs in the top 10 in Puerto Vallarta.

ps. We did read other reviews that "compared" this establishment to the other well-known nearby "grill". While we enjoyed that facility too, they are not the same and you must experience El Palomar de los Gonzalez and then you will have truly "done it all" in Puerto Vallarta !

Adios Amigos :-)

  • Visited December 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank PhillyFamilyofFour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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755 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Kansas City, Missouri
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Wonderful experience”
Reviewed December 18, 2013

We went on a Sunday night right before sunset and watched the sunset and lights of the city of puerto Vallarta come alive. The restaurant sits above the city on the bluff. This was one of the best experiences we have had since starting to visit this area. We are located in Nuevo Vallarta so if you would like to be adventurous you can take the walmart directo bus and then any of the centro ones to downtown and walk the Malecon to the other sided of the river cuale then catch a taxi up to the restaurant for 40 peso. The bus trip is about 20 peso per person. We took a taxi back and it was 250 peso. This was a wonderful restaurant with great food and excellent service.. We highly recommend.

  • Visited December 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank ububuddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Camas, Washington
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“The Romance and Quality of Vista Grill Before they got big”
Reviewed December 14, 2013

For years, we have enjoyed the Vista Grill and continue to. But if you are looking for a more romantic setting and a great meal for about 2/3 of the price of Vista Grill, you need to try this restaurant. This is my new "Go To" restaurant in Puerto Vallarta along with Las Palapas (Vista Grill and Las Palapas are owned by the same owner interestingly). You need to try El Palomar de los Gonzalez for a family owned restaurant that truly cares.

  • Visited December 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Michael H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Antwerp, Belgium
Level 6 Contributor
129 reviews
86 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
“Good !”
Reviewed December 2, 2013

This was the evening we won't forget ! Our Mexican friends invited us for an evening out.....so we didn't know where we were going. The restaurant did not disappoint at all, great calamares , the service was friendly. We had a very good and outstanding night at El Palolmar de los Gonzalez with our friends! The view and price-ticket are great!

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank puertovallartafan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Juan Ramón G, Manager at El Palomar de los Gonzalez, responded to this review, December 4, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to write a review. We were glad to have you!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Great view, mediocre food”
Reviewed December 1, 2013

I read the other reviews praising the food in this restaurant and I wonder - did we catch them on a bad night or did we order the wrong things? I ordered the scallop appetizer. The scallops were tiny, mushy, and served in a thin, bland broth. The dish was unappealing both visually and texturally with very little actual scallop flavor. I ordered a shrimp entree and, again, the shrimp were tasteless and rubbery. My spouse had a similar experience with her food. Service was inattentive and we spent long periods waiting. There was a band playing, going table to table, playing for tips and hawking CDs. The band was good, the musicians obviously talented, but we did not want a private table song or to buy a CD. We requested our check so that we could leave before they made it to our table. Our waiter, quite obviously, delayed bringing our check so the band could make it to our table. This kind of "milk the tourist" collusion left us with a really bad feeling about our experience. But, the view is great.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank birchdreams
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Juan Ramón G, Manager at El Palomar de los Gonzalez, responded to this review, December 4, 2013
We are very sorry to hear we did not meet your expectations. Know that we appreciate your comments and will do our best to fix this problems. We really hope you would give us another chance in the hopes that we can give you a much better impression the secont time around. Thank you for taking the time to write a review!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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