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“freindly but bloated”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Red Mesa Grill

Red Mesa Grill
Ranked #17 of 298 Restaurants in Traverse City
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $6 - $22
Cuisines: Mexican, Southwestern, Latin, Spanish, South American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Dining on a budget, Kids, Large groups, Bar scene, Special occasions
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Off-Street Parking, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Parking Available, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Television, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: Traditional Mexican and Latin American specialties served in a fun, lively and festive setting. Featuring the finest and largest selection of Tequila in the North and Michigan's best Margaritas.
Traverse City, Michigan
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“freindly but bloated”
Reviewed October 3, 2010

Great service! Good atmosphere. Gluten-free menu. Too bad we really didn't care for the flavors. I ordered mushroom fajitas. They tasted too much like Tequila. I didn't hear the waitress when she said they were marinated with Tequila. My fault for ordering this entree. They did give us huge servings. Tortilla soup was "so-so." Smashed potatoes lacked seasoning. Latino Chopped salad was okay. We are all a bit bloated this evening. MSG?

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank 7violetmoons
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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612 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan
Level Contributor
148 reviews
69 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 520 helpful votes
“Magnifico!”
Reviewed July 13, 2010

Best Mexican in the Traverse Bay area- large menu, great food served HOT and very, very pleasant group of wholesome young people working there. The Smoky Bean Steak burrito was awesome and you must try the Mexican Fried Ice Cream. Portions are large and, combined with the chips and salsa, you probably won't have alot of room, so you must make multiple visits. Full bar with lots and lots of tequila to sample- Margaritas are delicious served in an Aztec style glass.

Food is more Southwestern than authentic Mexican, but Northern Michigan is not exactly a big ethnic melting pot so this can be understood. Can get too popular in high season (summer) so call ahead at peak dinner hours.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
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    • Food
Helpful?
Thank CaptainAmerica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Traverse City MI
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Best Margarita in Town...and I don't even like Margarita's!”
Reviewed March 26, 2010

The Red Mesa has wonderful atmosphere, great food, and wonderful drinks! I have never had a bad experience there and I am a regular! I would recommend it to anyone!

Helpful?
Thank Andrea B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Haven, MI
Level Contributor
203 reviews
76 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Good food, friendly staff, yummy, yummy!”
Reviewed November 15, 2009

I enjoyed my food so much the first night, I went back the second evening! The wait staff was friendly, as in, "I like my job". No fake smiles. The food is not overly spicy but I'm sure they would adjust that if you wanted it spicier. I felt very welcomed. It was not overly noisy. Seemed to be very family friendly. I would definitely go back if I am in the TC area.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank runandbike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Traverse City, Michigan
Level Contributor
83 reviews
52 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Latin American Cuisine with a smile”
Reviewed November 6, 2009

We are new to the Traverse City area and having fun getting to know all the restaurants. The Red Mesa Grill boasts "Traditional Mexican dishes and unique specialties from Peru, Brazil, Costa Rica and other Latin American countries". We don't know anything about 'traditional Latin American dishes' but the other reviews here enticed us to stop at the colorful restaurant with the gecko design located on US 31 N.

We arrived on a quiet Friday evening during off-season (early November) to discover it was still Happy Hour (Mon-Sat from 4-6pm). Yeh! Appetizers were half price and $1 off drinks. Hubby normally likes his margaritas frozen but our waitress convinced him to try the house margarita on the rocks, and he loved them so much that he had three -- and I drove home.

Some of the reviewers here didn't care for the dip (a mild, smashed bean base) served with the bottomless chip bowl, but we enjoyed the change from the typical red salsa. The waitress said it is made fresh daily.

Hubby ordered the Brazilian Steak (a small, marinated & grilled hanger steak) and served with green chile smashed potatoes. He said the steak was perfectly cooked but his face grew redder and redder as he ate the VERY spicy smashed potatoes.

I ordered the Peruvian Pollo Aji Amarillo (2 huge chicken breasts, battered and sautéed) with Peruvian Purple potatoes and jicama (turnip). Unfortunately, I didn't care for it. The battered chicken was watery inside, soggy outside. The purple potatoes were pretty but too earthy for my tastes and the jicama were...well...turnips.

Afterwards, we shared dessert: Coconut Bread Pudding and the recommended Habanero Fried Ice Cream. We fought over the fabulous bread pudding (a big, warm puff of bread pudding with toasted coconut and a rum sauce). But the habanero hot fudge that topped the softball-sized dip of deep-fried cinnamon ice cream was -- to use a highly technical culinary term -- icky. Made with habanero chilies, it was insanely hot, tasted burnt, and left a lingering bad taste. We left it sitting uneaten on the table.

The dining room has a warm, cozy feel with tables and booths. As the evening went on the room filled up, but here was enough room between tables that I would've felt comfortable bringing my mom in her wheelchair to dine. The clientele were all ages, from senior citizens and young families with children to 30-somethings at the bar. The decor is eclectic with warm Latin colors and several fun elements, like a giant dragon hanging from the ceiling and a mariachi band of life-size Day-Of-The-Dead dummies.

Service was good, although I was surprised that the waitress didn't ask why we left the fried ice cream melting untouched.

Overall, we enjoyed the evening and appreciated their unique menu selections but we had a love/hate reaction to the food. Man does not live on great margaritas and coconut bread pudding alone (at least he won't for long). We will try it again but be more careful with our choices next time. The prices aren't exuberant...unless you leave most of it on the plate.

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

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