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“Amazing food, incredible service”
Review of El Naranjo

El Naranjo
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Ranked #184 of 3,992 Restaurants in Austin
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: Latin, Mexican
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Driskill
Reviewed April 4, 2014 via mobile

We stumbled upon this little gem last night. Visiting Austin from San Diego we were looking for a good Mexican restaurant that was not your typical greasy Tex-mex. Nothing prepared though for the treat we had in store. The ambiance was incredible in the renovated older home turned modern chic yet warm restaurant. There was a nice small separate bar area when you walked. Then the restaurant itself was divided into rooms which enhanced the intimacy of the dining experience. The menu is small because every dish was made to order with the freshest ingredients. My kids order limeade that was as good or better than my Serrano pepper laden margarita. We started with a fresh tuna cerviche was served with warm homemade chips. The flavors melted and swirled together in your mouth. We could have eaten several of these. The cochinita pibil was the best I have had anywhere in the world ... Even better than in the Yucatan. It was served with homemade corn tortillas. If there was any place to criticize our meal, and it was a small criticism it was the mole poblano. Although good, it just didn't rise to that next level like everything else did. And finally the service ... Impeccable! My husband said our waiter was the best he ever had. If you want to treat yourself to a cool hidden gem when in Austin this is the place to go!

Thank Lucy E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ernesto T, Owner at El Naranjo, responded to this reviewResponded July 7, 2014

Lucy, we know San Diego has some great Mexican food -- so glad we were able to impress you with ours! You really hit the nail on the head when you said “every dish was made to order with the freshest ingredients.” That's something that we take a lot of pride in, and hearing how much your family enjoyed everything from the limeade to the cochinita pibil is music to our ears. Not only that, we put a ton of effort into designing our restaurant to feel as welcoming as possible, so it's wonderful to know that you felt right at home. If you're ever back in Austin, we'd love to see you for another meal!

Hasta Luego,
El Naranjo Team

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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133 - 137 of 154 reviews

Reviewed January 21, 2014

We visited El Naranjo for dinner on a visit to Austin and enjoyed it so much that we went we went back for brunch a couple of days later! The food is authentic and creative. I had the weekly mole (a corn based mole that I had never heard of) over duck breast. It was excellent. Each of our companions was equally impressed with his/her dish. The portions aren't huge, so I would add one of the great appetizers.

The brunch was equally good. The high point was the pan dulce served at the beginning of the meal that was unlike any pan dulce I have had. It was richer and more buttery than most with a wonderful flaky crust. For brunch, I had quesadillas, including quesadillas made with huitlacoche. Excellent!

El Naranjo has an excellent wine list, emphasizing Spanish and Chilean wines.

The chef is very much a part of the dining experience, stopping by tables and answering questions.

A visit to Austin isn't complete without a visit to El Naranjo!

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Thank too_few_trips_1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2014

Authentic Mexican food is the real deal here. It's fresh, moderately priced and presented well. All in a modern, handsome restaurant

Having lived in Mexico City for 3.5 years, I've had the best and the worst imitations in the USA. This is the tops.

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Thank Col A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 18, 2013

Don't let the 'neighborhood construction projects' put you off, the food was wonderful, the MOLE WAS WORTH THE TRIP ALL BY ITSELF.

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Thank DRCtraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2013

The best black bean soup I ever had. Thick, toasted tortilla strips, avocado chunks, spicy. Life is good. Then the fresh fish tacos came out. The fish was spicy and fresh. The coleslaw crispy and accompanying black beans full of earthy flavor. We will be back for dinner!

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Thank Blueshadow31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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