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“No service but, oh the food was awesome”

Mezcal Cantina y Cocina
Ranked #383 of 704 Restaurants in Riverside
Price range: $5 - $30
Cuisines: Mexican
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night
Description: Located in the heart of Downtown Riverside, Mezcal Cantina y Cocina serves authentic Mexican cuisine with an added modern twist! On the weekends, the Cantina transforms into Mezcal Ultralounge; a premier Tequila lounge & nightclub.
Rancho Cucamonga, California
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“No service but, oh the food was awesome”
Reviewed June 22, 2014

Came with high expectations but the place was incredibly loud and the service terribly bad. Not sure if they were understaffed or not (didn't look like it) but I don't really care as no one explain why it took so long. Should have walked out. Finally after 40 minutes in the waitress apologized for the delays and sketchy service... They have a banquet in a different area and the USA vs Portugal World Cup game had just ended.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Ina B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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54 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Baltimore, MD
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Good Food, Good Location, Good Environment”
Reviewed June 16, 2014

It was my first time in Riverside and I loved the town, my friend that I was visiting wanted to check the place out and we had a great experience. We went on a Taco Tuesday so there were good specials. It had a trendy environment, the service was fine (nothing exceptional), and the food was authentic and tasty. I have a feeling on weekends it is probably even busier so I would recommend a reservation or expecting a line.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Janess1965
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Riverside, California
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Outstanding service, interesting cocktails, and good food”
Reviewed June 4, 2014

We came by fairly early on a weeknight. It took a moment for anyone to notice us to seat us, but once we were seated the service was outstanding. Our server brought waters, chips and salsa while we looked at the cocktail menu, warned us about unusual tastes or spiciness in what we ordered, and checked back with us very frequently. We were there over 2 hours, and in that time the place filled up but the service remained excellent. We even moved tables because it was too warm in our booth, and our server continued to be cheerful and accommodating.

We tried 4 different cocktails (2 mezcal and 2 tequila) during the evening, and all 4 were quite good. The flavor combinations were interesting and well executed, though I thought they were a little under-garnished (as in not at all). However, I've never had mezcal cocktails before so maybe they're not meant to be garnished :)

The food was very good. The guacamole had lots of lime and large chunks of avocado. I had shrimp enchiladas that were very cheesy and flavorful, though they needed a couple more tablespoons of sauce. Hubby had the braised lamb shank with red mole sauce. The lamb was sweet and fell off the bone. The mole was better than average; tasty but maybe not as deep in flavor as I usually prefer.

We will definitely be back to try more cocktails. They have a molcajete entree for 2 that looks interesting, so that's on our list too. Overall, I think they are off to a great start at Mezcal!

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank MollyCA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Riverside, California
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Expectations were too high!”
Reviewed May 29, 2014

I live in Riverside and I was excited that my city is finally developing it's downtown area so when Mezcal opened I was like "YES FINALLY"!! I know this is a new establishment and I am sure they are working out the kinks so with that I have been to Mezcal a total of 3 times as of today and since the first visit the service just seems to get worse every time we go....

First visit- We went for a drink the day it opened. Good service!! Our waitress was quick to fill our drinks. We were with a friend of the owners so this may have been why were so well taken care of.

Second visit- We came for an early dinner and was semi ignored by our waiter. He seemed more interested in the table next to us full of girls.

Third visit- Knowing that Mezcal is also labeled as a "cantina" I went out on a limb and decided to plan a small birthday celebration there. My friend of the owners helped set up our reservations so I felt I had no worries. The date of our event we arrived on time 8:30 pm and was told by the hostess because all of my party was not present they would not seat us. Come to find out the table that was reserved for us was being occupied by another party. I was on time and me and my guests stood around waiting for to be seated for over an hour!! I finally said just give us any table. Meanwhile tables were being moved out to clear for a dance floor. All the while we had not even put in our order for dinner! By 9:45 we were told our table was finally ready and we could be seated. Needless to say we didnt eat till around 10:30! When we had reservations for 8:30!!
It gets better....I was noticed that the area we reserved for the dancing portion of our night was being occupied as well. I asked the "manager" am I going to have to wait for them to leave before I use that area too? He said it was very hot in that area and if I wanted to go and check the temperature to see if I still wanted it. I did and it was fine. However it was still full of people and empty beer bottles. The people who were in that area left and my guests made their way over. I was embarrased!! I dont know if or when I will be returning.

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

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