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“Wonderful - Friendly Service”
Review of El Jacalito Grill

El Jacalito Grill
Ranked #11 of 125 Restaurants in Big Bear Region
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $7 - $16
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Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Families with children
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Reviewed May 14, 2013

We found this place after wandering the village for a little while. It was very reasonably priced, and the food was great. I had the carne asada nachos, which were incredible. My husband had the steak fajitas. These were good too, but the steak was a little blah. The onions and peppers were great though. The staff were very friendly, and the ambiance is lovely. We sat outside on the patio, which is quite nice. We would definitely go back next time we're in Big Bear.

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Thank NatalieAT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (129)
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94 - 98 of 129 reviews

Reviewed February 3, 2013 via mobile

OK food if your very hungry. I will probably go try another Mexican food restaurant next time. Service was not bad but non-existant.

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Thank chargerdentist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2013

I didn't plan on going to Big Bear to end up eating Mexican food, but one night my fiance and I decided to stop in and check it out. It was between this place and Peppermill and once we found out that Peppermill (which, I love) would be an hour wait and Jacalito would seat us immediately in the bar area, we were set.

We didn't have the full dining experience since we were at one of the bar tables but our service was prompt, the chips were served warm, and the drinks were strong. I got a strawberry mojito. I know the prior reviewer said the drinks were practically non alcoholic, but maybe they've recognized that and fixed the issue. I'm not a light weight and even I thought it was a great drink. The mixed fish and shrimp ceviche was delicious and refreshing. The atmosphere was also very upbeat, a football game was on and it was a good spot to watch a game.

I'm glad we happened to step into Jacalito and discovered a new place to go to on our Big Bear trips.

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Thank AlyssaMT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2012


I visited this restaurant the Saturday after Thanksgiving in mid-afternoon. Yes, they were busy. Perhaps that is some sort of unique and overwhelming challenge for a ... restaurant?

We waited to be seated -- no complaints about that. But AFTER being seated: 30 minutes by the clock for water and stale chips; another 20 minutes to place the order; 10 more minutes for drinks to be brought -- and I am positive that "margarita" didn't have so much as a drop of alcohol in it. Ditto my companion's "mojito." Get real! At margarita prices, this place is serving fruit slushes safe for your 2-year old!

Another 20 minutes and the food finally came. Didn't look anything like the pictures on the menu. Can't tell you if it was any good -- it had sat so long waiting to be served that it was room temp by this time, and all I wanted in life was to leave and be done with this rip-off of a restaurant forever. My companion had to travel around the restaurant for more than 10 minutes to find someone to give us a check and liberate us. And we were not the only patrons wandering the place looking for our check, or the return of a credit card to complete payment.

Carlos -- who refused to give his last name -- was the person in charge of this totally unsatisfactory dining experience. Carlos blamed Marcos who refused to appear and talk with us. Marcos has no last name either, and Carlos finally admitted that both names were fake. When the restaurant experience is so bad that the staff insists on subterfuge and anonymity, well, who can add anything to that?

I always feel bad about being forced by the facts of an experience to give a bad review. (Check my Trip Advisor review archive for proof of that!) No one goes out to eat hoping or willing to have a miserable experience. But sometimes, the experience is simply so bad that staying silent is to collaborate in the rip-off. My heartfelt advice: STAY AWAY FROM THIS PLACE. You are in BB Village and you have a big bunch of great choices within a few steps in any direction!

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Thank ccmccall
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
eljacalito22, General Manager at El Jacalito Grill, responded to this reviewResponded December 5, 2012

Dear ccmccall;

We are very sorry that our no-pet policy made you so upset that your experience at our restaurant was very disappointed; we will still would love to extend our Christmas wishes for you and your family.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, from El jacalito team

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 13, 2012

Really enjoyed this, across from the movie theater. Low prices, good food. Good extensive menu. We'll be back!

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

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