Cafe El Tapatio - Glenview

4.5
189 reviews
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$30 and under
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Mexican
Cafe El Tapatio was established in 1974 becoming a Chicago Staple for Authentic Mexican Cuisine and Drinks. Brought to the North Shore in 2017, Cafe El Tapatio brings the heat to the suburbs in a hip and urban environment. Focusing on traditional Mexican flavors we go above and beyond the typical run of the mill Mexican restaurant bringing one entrees like Arrachera XX, Pollo en Mole de Reyna, Camarones al Tequila, and Salmón Citrico; alongside various other traditionally flavored dishes. In regards to our drinks, all our specialty cocktails are made with small batch boutique 100% Blue Agave Tequila.

We hope to see you soon! We're open for Lunch and Dinner during the week and Brunch and Dinner on weekends.

Find us on Instagram & Facebook: @cafeeltapatiogv
What 189 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.4
service
4.4
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
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R
1 review
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely great food. Hands down. Go and try it. I wish I had another stomach. Like a cow. Because I wish I could eat more. No room for desert for me because I can spare it. But another taco, or two, or three, si por favor

OT
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 1

Very disappointed have been many times before after tonight maybe not again

TK
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on August 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food, drinks and service.

c
Chicago
81 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our party of 6 enjoyed a delightful Mexican dinner. This was the first visit for 4 of our friends and they loved the experience. The service was attentive & friendly. The noise level a little too much, but we will still return.

m
Chicago
20 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

Food quality has gone down
My fajitas were swimming in red oily sauce
Enchiladas had little to no filling and my guest asked for sour cream and cheese on side and it was served all covered over
Will not be returning

JS
1 review
Dined on July 19, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 2

Good food. We had to wait quite awhile to get each course. It was very noisy when we first arrived. It did quiet down a bit after about 20 minutes and 2 or 3 groups left. We would go there again.

BE
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

The food at Cafe El Tapatio is just so-so - it's surprisingly bland for a Mexican restaurant (with the exception of the fresh salsa, which has a kick and fresh flavor). Value for money is good - lots of food for the price. The presentation is cute - little metal demitasse cups for the refried beans, wood planks for tacos, etc. Nice patio - the interior is a little crowded but festive.

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome food & best customer service around!

CD
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on July 3, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

Food was good but I just had tacos. Waiter wasn’t that friendly.

MH
1 review
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Friendly staff, festive atmospher but plenty of T.V's if you want to watch some soccer. There is outside seating too. Spicy salsa and chips are started at your table for free. Plenty of options to choose from on the menu vegetables, fish, chicken, pork, beef, steak entrees.

NT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on June 24, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 4

Steak was too salty, never got tortillas that were supposed to come with it. Instead of nopalas had some relish that tasted like it was from the can. Mild salsa tasted like warmed up ketchup. Overall meh impression.

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Staff was friendly and helpful, food was great. The only thing I didn’t like was that they didn’t have a good mild salsa. Everything else was excellent!

r
Chicago
29 reviews
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 3

Special margarita was watered down plus glass was filled to the top with ice. Guacamole was not made in-house. Tasted processed, off and way too expensive. Carne asada tacos were good with a decent amount of meat. Grilled tilapia tacos were good as well. Enjoyed the jicama salad with citrus vinaigrette. Best thing was our server Eli. He had a great disposition.

LK
Chicago
14 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food was terrific. Very authentic. Great Margaritas! Wonderful service

TB
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Authentic Mexican food. Reminds me of the food from Mexico city. Great daily specials too.

NM
Las Vegas
3 reviews
Dined on June 6, 2019
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 3

Came in here for happy hour, ordered from the happy hour menu. The food came and it was good no complains. The bill arrived and our items weren't billed at the happy hour rate, told the server (not our original server) about the mistake and she said she would fix it but not our drinks because they weren't part of happy hour. She immediately walked away before I would reply, as we sat there to ponder about why not? If the tequila our drinks had are part of the "daily tequila happy hour special" but ok fine our original serve didn't specify, or let us know when we ordered that our drinks weren't part of it¿ a simply "our bad" "sorry" would have done it. I tried to explain Jazmin the server and she cut me off with a bunch of attitude and said she didn't want to argue so she would change it this one time. She come back with even more of an attitude to let me know that she changed the bill but my card was decline (with a smirk). I so badly wanted to go to bar and tell the manger to run my card again but my sister said she had cash and I didn't need to cause a scene. Just bummed cause I've been here several time and the service is always a hit or miss but never disrespectful so I never wanted to complain about the bad service because the food is good. Definitely not coming back.

D
Chicago
88 reviews
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

It was a crowded evening when we arrived yet the Opentable reservations showed availability for after 7pm. Our reservation was for two people at 7:30pm. We still had to wait almost 30 minutes and people ahead of us at the bar were being seated ahead of us. I wondered how attention was paid to reservations versus walk ins. Our entres were nothing unusual but they had a good selection of margaritas. The shrimp empanadas, an appetizer, were very good.

OT
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

The food was great as usual; the owner was friendly and walking the room, talking with guests, also as usual. But, the waiters were a bit gruff and hurried. The restaurant was full, but wait staff should should not make guests feel rushed. Still a great place, though.

LG
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on May 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Food, great Staff and best Margarita in Town!

OT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful service, great margaritas and wonderful food.

KA
Chicago
1 review
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service. Great food. The best margaritas in town! Thank you for making my birthday real special!

FR
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Back dining area very loud. Food excellent.

LM
Chicago
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was so good! We had the elote and ceviche as appetizers. They were perfect! Drinks were on point. Not too sweet. We both had the steak entrees and the seasoning was excellent. Such a fun evening!

JW
Chicago
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

We had been to the sister restaurant in the city several times- it’s close to where our son and his family live- and always enjoyed it. Our daughter wanted Mexican food and we were in the suburbs. So we decided to try this location. The special margaritas were wonderful and the food was excellent too. We tried fajitas and a couple different skirt steak dishes. The owner came over to introduce himself and make sure that we were enjoying our food. Service was responsive and a little too quick at times. This is not a place to sit and talk. Nonetheless, we will be back.

D
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

They were not prepared for Cinco de Mayo. Understaffed. Food not up to usual standards

MW
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food is awesome and so are the margaritas. Will definitely go again.

c
Chicago
81 reviews
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My friends & I had fruity margaritas & delicious entrees. The service was attentive & thoughtful. We will definitely be returning. The noise level is rather loud, though.

b
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

All the food options were very good. Busy night and our waiter was there for every need. Ceviche was delicious, shrimp fajita was saltier than we would have liked, and desserts were fantastic.

DB
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Busy Saturday night, the servers and owners are extremely friendly, servuce however was a bit slow. Overall, the food was excellent as were the drinks. Will definetly go back.

j
New England
2 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We celebrated my son’s 1st birthday here this weekend. The staff was so sweet. They brought out a little sombrero and dessert and sang. They even gave us a Polaroid of the moment. Very sweet!

AS
Chicago
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 2

The restaurant was packed on Saturday which seems that many people do not share my negative opinion. Reasons for my less than a favorable review: We had to sit at the table right next to the kitchen door, which totally ruined the experience - make sure you explicitly state in your reservation that you do not want to sit there. The food tasted authentic, agreed, and fresh, yes, but in comparison to other places, even chains such as Uncle Julio's, absolutely sub-par for some reason, primarily the meat seemed to be not well cooked (we had Fajitas). Lastly, service was borderline good, I assume this was due the busy night.

OT
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

Food was good with the exception of the guacamole which we didn’t care for. Service was slow to start out, ambience was nice. Margaritas are on the smaller side but did taste good.

JO
Chicago
25 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is by far the most delicious Mexican restaurant in the area. Don't miss this one!

TV
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 1

It was very loud. When we asked them to turn down the music they either forgot or decided not to. Service was slow and sporadic. Guacamole is awful-do not order. I have a friend that frequents this restaurant and never orders the guacamole. I wish she had told me beforehand! Tacos are great.

g
Chicago
25 reviews
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very DELICIOUS Mexican food, we were all WOWED!!!

j
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is my favorite local restaurant. Excellent authentic Mexican food with a great drink menu. Love the chicken mole and margaritas.

D
Chicago
11 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food. Owner comes around to the tables to make sure your meal is good. Nice atmosphere!

k
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Authentic and diverse menu. Something for everyone. Amazing, freshly squeezed Margaritas! Attentive staff and food, cooked perfectly and fast. In the summer they have a neat patio area. The location is deceiving, one would think it is not as fun, and tasty as it is. This place is Great!

AC
1 review
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food and great drinks. Would highly recommend. Only issue is the entire plaza is small so parking is a major headache during peak hours.

MM
1 review
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

ALWAYS a great time at El Tapatio. The service, food, atmosphere and welcome you get from Joe and Monica are always top notch. A really terrific restaurant!

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