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“Great hot salsa!”

La Playa Mexican Cafe
Ranked #1 of 172 Restaurants in Harlingen
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Mexican
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed September 22, 2013

No, not spicy hot, served warm with chips fresh from the fryer! We had the shrimp fajitas and charro beans with corn tortillas. The tortilla were warm, the shrimp was hot, and everything was done. We were a little disappointed that the fajitas weren't seasoned more, but a spoonful of warm salsa solved that problem. The beans were cooked with ham and onion and were great. The place is kept cool in the Texas heat so if you tend to get cold, bring a sweater. It is also somewhat dark, which should explain the photos attached.

Thank DeWitt65101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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241 - 245 of 284 reviews

Reviewed July 14, 2013

This was my second visit to this restaurant. first time going was fall of 2011 which was pretty good. Being from Edinburg and trying nearly every Mexican restaurant in Hidalgo county, especially in McAllen, I was surprised by this place. La Playa is above average in the quality and taste of their food. Only real problem with this place is that it gets packed, big time. And i'm not talking about packed only on the weekends, it gets packed during weekdays as well. It gets so packed that customers park along the street and the restaurant bought out a lot in the neighborhood for overflow parking.
They've got a bar area also which tends to get loud naturally. Once the alcohol starts to flow, so does noise level of the patrons who go for their drinks after a long day. The bar itself, attracts a young mid 20s to late 30s crowd of professionals, so it has a mature crowd in the bar area that seems social and button down.
Décor and theme isn't big on their list when you compare it to Poncho's, Casa Del Taco or Palenque Grill whose food also happens to be some what lacking. It seems as those restaurant sometimes spend more time of sprucing up the interior décor than their food. You don't have to worry about the food here at La Playa. Although like some have said, the menu is pricey but what Mexican restaurant isn't now days?
And as with any Mexican restaurant you'll also have some mariachi singers taking song requests which can be a bit expensive but romantic if you're on a date and want to impress your lady.

Some of the famous dishes that the valley is known for aside from anything that is fajita related is the Botana platter which is meant for large parties of 2 or more. Since I've traveled a lot throughout the South West I've seen other Mexican restaurants add botanas to their menu but what they consider botanas, especially even as far south as San Antonio, is vastly different to what a botana is here in the Valley. The first time here at La Playa, my date had just moved to the valley from Dallas after graduating college and originally grew up in El Paso. She had no idea what a botana was and what it consisted. Even fajita was foreign to her other than what she and others have had at Taco Bell or a Chilies restaurant outside of the valley.
La Playa combines all the good TexMex dishes that are popular to the area and do a fair job of presenting them to others who are unfamiliar to TexMex cuisine.


both in McAllen and that's fine by me

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Thank SNE544
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2013

We have always enjoyed the food here. The service is normally very good. It can be somewhat noisy at times, but no worse than other busy restaurant in Harlingen.

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Thank Paul4093
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

My wife and I along with 4 friends attended La Playa for supper prior to making our run back up north. This was the third time that we ate here this past winter season and we have never been disapointed.
I had the Fajita Plate and others had the deep fried Eggplant, Spinach Chicken, Tacos and even though the prices are in the 10-14 dollar range there are always enough to take home for the next day.

Happy hour is 3:30pm to 6:00 pm and the frozen margaritas are very tasty.

I recommend this restaurant to everyone that comes to visit.

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Thank FishfinderOntario6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 1, 2013

I have been here twice both with a big group of coworkers for lunch. Food is good wait staff pretty good also. I have no complaints about the place it has a great atmosphere.

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

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