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“Outstanding flavor, but too loud”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of El Charro Cafe

El Charro Cafe
Ranked #6 of 61 Restaurants in Oro Valley
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Mexican, Southwestern, Latin, Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Large groups, Families with children, Dining on a budget, Kids, Business meetings
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Late Night, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Television, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Cleveland
Level Contributor
33 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
“Outstanding flavor, but too loud”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 31, 2014

Our group had enjoyed the original El Charro downtown, and so we tried the one nearer to us in Oro Valley. We assumed no reservations, but turns out they do take reservations, so that is recommended. Went on a Thursday night in Janury, had to wait about 20 minutes for table for five.
Waitress came right away. I had perused the menu ahead of time so I knew what I was ordering, but the menu is large, doublesided.
I ordered the shrimp ceviche which was excellent, comes in a surprisingly large portion for an appetizer with tomato and avocado, in addition to a lot of shrimp and fish. Very fresh. I had a glass of chardonnay which was so-so. And then the grilled corn tortilla with chicken taco, which had a creamy aioli/chipotle sauce which was very savory. Two tacos with refried beans and rice was PLENTY of food for one person.
Others in our group were satisfied with the beef flauta (deep fried tortilla filled with beef), and enchiladas. Margarita on the rocks came in a Beer Pint glass, and was not very strong.
Our only complaint was it was too loud, and even though we were in a booth, we could not hear each other talk so conversation was a struggle.

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Heather M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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262 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    10
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Boston, MA
Level Contributor
22 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Like the food but fed up with the service”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 20, 2014

Three of my four trips there have had the same service problems. Someone brings chips and salsa right away but then nobody shows up to take the order, not even the drink order, for at least 10 minutes or until I flag someone down and ask them if I have a waiter. By then I can't eat anymore without at least a glass of water to wash it down. Sometimes I finally get something to drink but then nobody returns to take our food order for another overly-long period. I am always happy with my actual meal but I probably won't go again anytime soon because of the poor service.

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Tylers_Parents
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montrose, Colorado
Level Contributor
60 reviews
48 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Disappointment with "Top-Shelf" Margarita”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 17, 2014

Looking for "Best Margarita in Tucson" brings El Charro to the page, so we went. Thinking that if the "House" drink was best, then the Cadillac would be even better, we both ordered one. Soooooo very average! Too much sour and not enough tequila. Very forgettable.
The pork enchiladas we also average and the accompanying beans and rice were practically tasteless. The table salsa served with chips was tasty and just right for heat, but the tiny bowls made it difficult to get on a chip..... service was good and overall atmosphere bright and cheery.
Bottom line: Take another 20 minutes to drive to Prince St. for the Guadalajara Grill.....

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Tim C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
st. paul
Level Contributor
165 reviews
113 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“Festive setting and tasty food”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 15, 2014

You can't help but be cheered by the bright decorative tin lights , vintage posters and atmosphere when you enter El Charro.
The house margarita here won a a "Best in Tucson " award and you can see why.
Menu has variety and food is tasty. Good service here as well. Families, couples and groups all seemed to be having a good time.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank stpauliewoman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
251 reviews
162 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Great Dinner!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 12, 2014

Normally go to the downtown El Charro but decided to try the Oro Valley location. Was very happy with the food and service. This location is newer and set up very well. Will definitely go back again. It is a great value.

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Zack M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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