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“Busy-busy...but good 😉”
Review of Coba Cocina - CLOSED

Coba Cocina
Cuisines: Latin, Contemporary, Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Description: Some guys are born curious. They can't just wonder what's around the corner. They've got to go see for themselves. The Greers are like that with food. You might call them culinary explorers. You might run into Lee tracking the true cubano in a Tampa barrio, the perfect pork chop in a Rio churrascaria. Phil sweet talking the secret of sweet corn tamales out of an ancient abuela in a Yucatan taqueria. One or both hot on the trail of the tastiest brisket taco. The most piquant Peruvian ceviche. The most authentic salsa. Margaritas that'll make you want to mambo. Whatever wows them on their travels, they bring right on back home. To wow you at Coba Cocina, Cobar Cantina, and Cocoh! Confectioner.
Lexington, Kentucky
Level 5 Contributor
77 reviews
53 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Busy-busy...but good 😉”
Reviewed August 18, 2013 via mobile

This place was busy, busy, busy. Boisterous....a lot going on. Now...we WERE seated by the kitchen. Maybe that's why I feel this way. They brought our chips & salsa before bringing us any water. I've never figured out why restaurants do this. We had to wait a bit to get a beverage. Approx 10 minutes. But it was a Friday night & this place was nothing but hustle & bustle. The chips & salsa were very tasty. My brisket taco was yummy & very seasoned. The kids macaroni does have a "bite" - but it's not too overly spicy. Kids Taco Loco was good & fajitas were tasty. Just wish restaurants would watch the salt. Sometimes it can be too much. I will say that I favor more local places & although this place is local, it just doesn't have that local feel that I enjoy. There's a lot going on all over the place w/the decor. Almost too much for me. Lots to look at. Jelly fish aquarium, etc. blue lighting. Restrooms have these really cool circular, moving spots on the floor ☺ So look at your feet when you're washing your hands! Prices are reasonable. Just wish there wasn't so much going on. Food was good. And you get a lot of it.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank K B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielle D, Public Relations Manager at Coba Cocina, responded to this review, August 27, 2013
Many thanks for your visit and we sincerely appreciate you taking the time to provide feedback. We strive to deliver the highest quality food and world class service and use all comments to work toward this goal. We are thrilled to know that you enjoyed your visit and we hope to see you soon at Coba Cocina, Cobar Cantina, and Cocoh! Confectioner.

Sincerely,

Danielle M. Dove
Director of Marketing
Greer Companies
866 Malabu Drive, Suite 250
Lexington, KY 40502
Phone: 859-269-1966, ext.114
Direct Line: 859-554-6314
Fax: 859-269-2381
ddove@greercompanies.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

220 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    77
    76
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    8
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Lexington, Kentucky
Level 5 Contributor
71 reviews
60 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”
Reviewed August 12, 2013

First the Good. In fact the great! Food flavor, portion size, price and service were all outstanding! In fact anyone that thinks this food is overpriced is clearly better served at an establishment with a drive through window. The brisket tacos and the ribs were the best in either category that I've ever tried, period. Absolutely delicious - and the ribs were the largest portion I have ever seen. The plate literally ran half the length of our table.

The Bad. The fish tacos. Tillapia is supposed to be a mild white fish. Whatever this fish was in the taco, it was anything but mild and we don't believe it was tillapia. Either that or it was not fresh. It smelled so strongly that we were already questioning our choice before it was ever placed on the table. Sure enough, my companion barely got thru one taco and had to stop. It was that bad. Absolutely inedible. They smelled like the live well of a fishing boat. We said nothing to our server because frankly if she couldn't tell that something was very wrong just by her own sense of smell, there was no reason to discuss it any further.

The Ugly. OK, so maybe not ugly, but certainly confused. I literally thought of a carnival ride when we started walking in the circle of tables. Certainly an original, no question about that, but then again, so is Halloween in Tijuana. It appears to have been decorated with leftovers from Kingd Island or Holiday World.

But even so, overall we will definitely be back. Looking forward to it in fact.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank DaveR3232
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielle D, Public Relations Manager at Coba Cocina, responded to this review, August 27, 2013
Dave,

Many thanks for your visit and we sincerely appreciate you taking the time to provide feedback. We strive to deliver the highest quality food and world class service and use all constructive comments to work toward this goal. Please feel free to ask your server or manager if there is any issue with the food. We want to make sure you enjoy what you receive! If you have other specific details to share, please let me know. We hope to see you soon at Coba Cocina, Cobar Cantina, and Cocoh! Confectioner.

Sincerely,

Danielle M. Dove
Director of Marketing
Greer Companies
866 Malabu Drive, Suite 250
Lexington, KY 40502
Phone: 859-269-1966, ext.114
Direct Line: 859-554-6314
Fax: 859-269-2381
ddove@greercompanies.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Louisville, Kentucky
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“Million Dollar Restaurant Comes Up Short”
Reviewed August 12, 2013

I once heard a restaurant critic say atmosphere and buzz will get a customer in the doors the first time, but the food keeps 'em coming back. And that is our story and impression of Coba Cocina.

First, it's like nothing else in Lexington. It's Las Vegas. Epcot. Disney. It's not Kentucky. Which is holds great promise for a delightful experience. Its a "Mexican" (and we'll get to that later) restaurant with a giant 50 foot (my estimate) dome in the middle with a 40 foot tall by 10 foot wide (my estimates) cylinder of salt water housing jelly fish. And the jelly fish environment has lights at the top that change color, illuminating the creatures in different colors. Pretty wild.

The decor is way over the top. There is art glass all over the place: on either side of each booth, between sections, at the top in bar area. It's frosted and cut into shapes to mimic ice or waves or something. Some of it is lit with blue lights. To my taste it's way overdone and appoaches tacky. The pieces on each side of each booth look sorta art deco but there are just too many. They could have left it off each side of each booth and thus made the rest of it a little unique. it's sorta Disney-gone-wild.

Now the food and service: We came for lunch at 1pm on a Saturday. The wait was short. They don't give you buzzer devices; instead you watch for your name on a screen in the lobby. The screen ain't so helpful if you can't find a place to wait in lobby and sit somewhere else to wait. Our name never came up on screen for "waiting" or "now seating", but after 10 minutes we came back to hostess and she said they had already called our name. The seating system isn't very practical and failed us.

The jelly fish also don't cooperate with us humans. We went to the restaurant for the jellyfish attraction. But guess what? 90% of them prefer to hang out on the bottom, with only an occasional rebel daring to swim around the top. We're not experts in Cnidarian and Ctenophore behavior, but I expect it has something to do with temperature or currents/waterflow in the aquarium. But since this is the main feature, it seems no one planned that most of them would hang out at bottom so for most of lower level restaurant seating you don't get to see many jellyfish. Oh well, the best laid plans of man...........

We also asked for seating by jelly fish tank. We were told none were available. My 80 year old Mom wanted to watch them, as that is the big draw to the restaurant. When they seated us I went over into that area and found 50% of the tables available. We asked why we couldn't sit at one of those vacant tables and the staff mumbled something about this or that but really gave us no reason. At end of our lunch we walked over to look at the jelly fish and still 50% of the tables in that area were vacant.

Now the food: very average. You get a lot of it, so come with an appetite. But it's not typical "Mexican". We're not sure what it is. Very gourmet upscale Mexican-sorta super chef whimsies. So don't go thinking you can order a burrito or enchilada or tacos or normal Mexican. It's a very chic menu. It's not bad it's just not normal Mexican. It's not bad food but it's not "oh wow this is great food", either. Chic does not always equal great.

They also failed to give us a lunch menu. We were there at 1pm on a Saturday. We ordered off the dinner menu because that's what they gave us, only to learn as we were leaving that a lunch menu is available. Why didn't they mention this or give us lunch menus? Maybe because they'd prefer you order off more expensive dinner menu?

Our waitress seemed to be in a big hurry to get our orders. Within maybe 10 minutes she was at our table no less than 5 times to the point of badgering us to order our food. We wanted to take it easy, have a beer or a drink, watch the occasional jellyfish at the top from our vantage point from a booth removed from the jellyfish area. We wanted appetizers. We wanted to hang out. We didn't want a pesky waitress showing up every few minutes asking "are you ready to order yet?"

The food came quickly and was hot and well prepared. The queso we had as an appitizer was excellent, as was complimentary bean dip with chips. Our main courses also came quickly but were aveage.

They do have an excellent Mexican beer menu, with many (11 or so) Mexican beers. The beer in bottles was very cold, but they didn't bring us glasses. So we had to drink out of the bottles, which included us peeling more of the foil wraps around the tops off so we didn't injest foil or taste foil with our beer. Would it be too much trouble to also bring us mugs or glasses with our bottled beer?

This was our first time at the Coba Cocina, and probably our last to order food or lunch or dinner. Next time we'll probably just come for a beer or drinks and sit up on second level in bar area where maybe we can watch the jellyfish. Have some queso and dip and chips. Enjoy the atmosphere, but eat dinner somewhere else. Sorry, it looks likes they invested all the money into a Disney ride but forgot about service and food.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Mark W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielle D, Public Relations Manager at Coba Cocina, responded to this review, August 27, 2013
Mark,

Many thanks for your visit and we sincerely appreciate you taking the time to provide such detailed feedback. We'll definitely take it back to our staff to review. We strive to deliver the highest quality food and world class service and use all constructive comments to work toward this goal. We hope you give us another chance and to see you soon at Coba Cocina, Cobar Cantina, and Cocoh! Confectioner.

Sincerely,

Danielle M. Dove
Director of Marketing
Greer Companies
866 Malabu Drive, Suite 250
Lexington, KY 40502
Phone: 859-269-1966, ext.114
Direct Line: 859-554-6314
Fax: 859-269-2381
ddove@greercompanies.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Interesting”
Reviewed August 11, 2013

Cool place...a little over the top. Menu interesting, strange to me that the "signature" items at a tex-mex place are a hamburger, seafood, & something else odd...nothing tex or mex! Food was okay, nothing extraordinary. Nice to have something different, but fell a little short on taste. Fairly reasonably priced.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank kygirlbree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielle D, Public Relations Manager at Coba Cocina, responded to this review, August 12, 2013
Many thanks for your visit and we sincerely appreciate you taking the time to provide feedback. We strive to deliver the highest quality food and world class service and use all constructive comments to work toward this goal. If you have other specific details to share, please let me know. We hope to see you soon at Coba Cocina, Cobar Cantina, and Cocoh! Confectioner.

Sincerely,

Danielle M. Dove
Director of Marketing
Greer Companies
866 Malabu Drive, Suite 250
Lexington, KY 40502
Phone: 859-269-1966, ext.114
Direct Line: 859-554-6314
Fax: 859-269-2381
ddove@greercompanies.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wilmore, Kentucky
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Unique dining restaurant, excellent Service, Tasty Food.”
Reviewed August 8, 2013

My wife and I and 2 friends went to Coba Cocina after Thursday night live on 8/1/13. I marveled at the outside architecture and was equally impressed with the dining areas. The blue tint and glass decorative partitions reminded be of eating in an aquarium, which was great for all of us.
The service could not have been better. I had the Fried Baja Tacos ($12.00), my wife had the Grilled Baja Tacos ($12.00) and we each had 2 signature drinks $7- 8.00 per drink). the total cost $56.18. The meals and drinks were very good. We all felt it was a great dining venue, with great service, good food and drinks. We will take visitors from out of town to this establishment for sure and will also go back for more.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Chasinky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielle D, Public Relations Manager at Coba Cocina, responded to this review, August 12, 2013
Many thanks for your visit and we sincerely appreciate you taking the time to provide feedback. We strive to deliver the highest quality food and world class service and use all comments to work toward this goal. We are thrilled to know that you enjoyed your visit, thought the service was great, and we hope to see you soon at Coba Cocina, Cobar Cantina, and Cocoh! Confectioner.

Sincerely,

Danielle M. Dove
Director of Marketing
Greer Companies
866 Malabu Drive, Suite 250
Lexington, KY 40502
Phone: 859-269-1966, ext.114
Direct Line: 859-554-6314
Fax: 859-269-2381
ddove@greercompanies.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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