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  • Zapatista - Northbrook

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Zapatista - Northbrook
Zapatista - Northbrook

Zapatista - Northbrook Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.zapatistarestaurant.com
  • Email: infonb@zapatistarestaurant.com
  • Phone: (847) 559-0939
  • Hours of Operation: Lunch: Everyday: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Dinner; Monday - Thursday: 3:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 3:00pm - 11:00pm, Sunday: 3:00pm - 9:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Mexican, Mexican / Southwestern, Regional Mexican
  • Executive Chef: Alberto Mendez
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cafe, Counter Seating, Delivery, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: Zapatista is a great location for any special event. Our family style menu, "Mesa de Amigos" (Table of Friends), encourages an interactive experience in a casual restaurant seating for groups of up to 250.
  • Private Party Contact: Phil Shanks (888) 320-9627
  • Special Events & Promotions: Monthly Events through the entire year.
    -Tequila Dinners
    -Wine Dinners
    -Beer Dinners
    -Seasonal Affairs

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Waukeegan Rd.
  • Parking: Public Lot
A word from Zapatista - Northbrook
Zapatista is named in honor of Emiliano Zapata and all his faithful followers, which were called Zapatistas. During the Mexican Revolution early in the 20th century, Zapatistas fought for freedom, equal rights for fair wages and the opportunity to own their own land, much like the American colonists had fought for in the American Revolutionary War. Given the importance of Mexican culture in the United States, we found it necessary to tell this story through our restaurant.

Zapatista is one of Chicago's best authentic Mexican restaurants. Favorite dishes include the made-to-order guacamole and the fajitas which are served sizzling hot in a molcajete or lave stone. The menu also boasts excellent steak and seafood dishes and a seemingly endless list of tequila choices. And our guests will love al fresco dining in late spring through early autumn, with our grand outdoor dining area on the sidewalk.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGood for Groups
Diner Reviews
  • "Another trip to Zapatista and it did not disappoint. Everything was great - especially the service."
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "Have always wanted to try this restaurant and a friend recommended it. Not sure why. The ambience was terrific with a very friendly and attentive staff. The problem was that the food had no flavor. The chef must have forgotten any type of spices. Gauc appetizer was fresh but bland. Queso was a total disaster. All the cheese was stuck to the sides of the bowl with giant strips of peppers. More of a pepper dish than cheese. Total waste of time. My son had to ask for extra cheese and 2 different sauces to give his burrito some flavor. I think this restaurant has potential if they get a new chef with more authentic Mexican spices in the dishes."
    Dined on 4/8/2014
  • "We love Zapatista Northbrook. When the weather is colder, we like to eat in the bar area so we can take advantage of the windows and the noise level is usually lower than in the restaurant area. Bar area service is usually slow since the bartender serves the tables and the bar only has an exit on the far side. This outing the service was extremely slow. We had to ask several times for a salsa refill and then had to flag down the bartender several times to have our order taken, get water refills, and even order additional drinks. It didn't seem to be a busy night, and it forced us to "dine", not eat and dash. We will no doubt go back. We love to eat outside on the patio when the weather is nice."
    Dined on 4/8/2014
  • "I love this restaurant! My 3rd visit here and I have enjoyed both lunch and dinner. The only problem I have had is getting my steak cooked to the right temperature because it's served on this rock bowls that are super hot and literally your meet would be over done by the time you get to it. I like mine rare or medium rare and it's really hard to get it here. Other than that everything else is tasty and prices are a great value."
    Dined on 4/8/2014
  • "Second time in two months and everything was excellent! We will be back!"
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "Big space, nice bar, decent more upscale menu from the typical suburban Mexican menus. Would definitely come back again."
    Dined on 4/1/2014
  • "Good food, good service; would be great for a fun drinks night with a group of friends. Appetizers were great, loved the empanadas and the sopesitos. Would go back just for the appetizers!"
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "This was a quick stop after a business networking event & everyone was kind enough to fit us quickly in. The food & drinks were wonderful as well as the service. I'll definitely be back!!"
    Dined on 2/19/2014
  • "I have been takin my family and customers to zap for the past 2 years and this time ( party of 8) we were unlucky to be there when the place was busy and the service and kitchen could not handle the rush. We were disappointed in the meals. I consider myself a foodie, and usually will not go back if the resturant does not perform to the standards that I am used to, but when I mentioned to my server after the meal, he quietly took off the charges from our bill. It was a nice gesture on them. Will try it again, though because te place is usually very lively and food is good."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "Excellent service....seated promptly and with a smile. Waitress came to our table shortly thereafter and was knowledgeable, friendly and prompt. Food was VERY good, drinks were generous and tasty. No complaints at all. We will definitely return."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "We recently celebrated my wife's birthday at Zapatista in Northbrook. While living in the city we frequented the South Loop location, which we loved! We have been to the Northbrook location several times now and really enjoy the food. Unfortunately, the service can be hit or miss. This time the server was very attentive and margaritas (strawberry and traditional), guacamole and fajitas were outstanding!"
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "We make it here once a month. The steak fajitas, guacamole, and salads are excellent. Service is almost always top-notch."
    Dined on 3/7/2014
  • "I truly appreciate that vegetarian and gluten-free menu items are so designated on the menu. The food is always fresh and flavorful and, despite good intentions to eat half my dish and take half home, I end up eating the entire meal. My only disappointment on this recent lunch visit is that they were out of avocados, so I had to forego the guacamole. Service is attentive and the atmosphere is comfortable and welcoming."
    Dined on 2/25/2014
  • "This was a pleasant find. We enjoyed the fresh chunky guacamole, fruity but not too sweet margaritas, and great soups. The traditional tortilla soup and the asparagus cream with crab had the perfect amount of spice. They have a great $8 deal for soup and a choice of another item, which included salads that came in an abundant portion. Even my mother-in-law who normally won't go for Mexican food enjoyed her offerings!"
    Dined on 2/16/2014
  • "I know it was valentine's day, but our waiter and bussers were in the weeds big time.... the guacamole was brought before chips and salsa. The woman who made the guac had to go and get some for us. our waiter was so busy we finally asked another waiter for refills. I love the food and usually the service but, i learned, it's better to go on a weekend and not a holiday."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Restaurant was fairly empty despite it being valentine's day.. Not necessarily a bad thing but not a great sign either. The restaurant itself was very nice on the inside and the service was pretty decent. The food was unimpressive given the prices though. Similar to a typical inoffensive American style Mexican place, but with authentic gourmet Mexican prices. Guacamole was pretty good but a relatively small portion considering the price as well. The fajitas were just ok. Drinks were also just ok. We both commented there was nothing particularly wrong with the food, but at the same time we were not discussing our next visit."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "From the fresh guacamole, to the outstanding fajitas in a mortar bowl, to the outstanding desserts, Zapatista is a delicious find!"
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "The food was very good. Tortilla soup was great! We will go back!"
    Dined on 2/3/2014
  • "Met the "gold" friends for our quarterly dinner,all coming from different areas. Woodstock gal and Loop fem arrived about the same time as the Skokie contingent. Great place for all to meet. Guacamole bar, wonderful. $5 house margarita's were extremely tasty as was the white sangria. Salad, tamales, fajitas, black beans and rice all pretty good. Vibrant music, energetic crowd around us yet we were able to have good conversation. Service was superb! Would recommend for trying cuisine from the different states of Mexico, all with regional spices and various heat levels. Not a large menu, tacos, burritos, some fish, lamb, steak and chicken are offered. They have a couple of vege items and offer gluten free at a minimum. Great guacamole!"
    Dined on 1/30/2014
  • "Had a great dinner and a wonderful server.....very good experience. Highly recommend the mango margaritas."
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "I've been to Zapatista many times over the past couple of years, and noticed a steady decline in this restaurant's appeal. Maybe it's because of the hard economy, staffing difficulties, or management, but Zapatista in Northbrook is not the shining example of good Mexican food it once was. I guess there's a reason the one in Lincoln Park closed down. They no longer make the guacamole at your table, the cuts of meat are tough & gamey, & the food presentation is lazy. Everyone from the hosts to the servers appear to be bothered by your presence. Once upon a time, I would happily visit Zapatista any time I had a Mexican food craving, but nowadays I'd much rather visit any other restaurant than waste my time or money here. Will not be returning."
    Dined on 12/31/2013
  • "The ambiance is nice. I have been to Zapatista before and had better experiences. The food was ok, nothing to rave about. I've had much better guacamole elsewhere. Service was terrible - waited a long time between water refills. Also, I think they forgot to put the tequilla in our Margaritas - both pitchers seemed to have no alcohol in them at all."
    Dined on 12/30/2013
  • "We had very good food here. The soup of the day was again excellent. They worked with us because of severe allergies for one member of our party and the kitchen and waitress did a great job! The two tacos for $5 special is an amazing deal even though you are limited in which tacos to choose from. The salsa was spicy but good and replenished when we finished our first one. The room is cold so we did have to wear our coats around us and our feet were quite chilly, but it was an exceptionally cold evening."
    Dined on 12/30/2013
  • "We enjoyed a nice lunch here. The lunch combinations are very good and reasonably priced."
    Dined on 12/16/2013
  • "Interesting menu and reasonable prices. Great for family night out. Service was excellent - attentive without hovering."
    Dined on 11/13/2013
  • "Went not expecting much but was amazingly surprised by good food and service. Had heard it was noisy and food was fair. Found it quiet and food excellent. Fresh guacamole made to order and fabulous fajitas with a twist. Stayed really hot due to these amazing clay bowls. Will definitely return."
    Dined on 11/10/2013
  • "As usual, a solid dinner with great service. Our waiter was very attentive throughout our dinner. Fajitas are always a great choice."
    Dined on 11/2/2013
  • "Nice restaurant with tastly food. We enjoyed the drinks as well."
    Dined on 11/2/2013
  • "Although our waitress was bubbly and friendly the food was bad as well and the margaritas were so so. After a house one we ordered a mercedes and not great.We ordered a carne asada and received a fatty strip steak.Ceviche was just small shrimp and the chicken rolled in chorizo and spinach was a bit dry and tasteless. It tasted like suburban mexican food and won't return. Very disappointing. Maybe we hit a bad night but it was our first visit and we were not impressed. Thank you for the travel zoo opportunity to explore this restaurant."
    Dined on 10/27/2013
  • "Kid friendly, especially early. Consistent food and good drinks make it a good choice for more upscale mexican in the area."
    Dined on 8/30/2013
  • "I have no complaints! I just want to go back again!"
    Dined on 10/20/2013
  • "Purchased travelzoo deal for 2 (appe platter/2 entrees/2 margaritas). The appetizer platter for two was mostly salad/1 flauta and 1/2 mushroom quesadilla. Not worth $15 as advertised. Would have rather picked an appetizer of our choice for $9 which looked good. The margarita's were so weak that we thought we were drinking flavored water. The two entrees were quite good but small. We left a little hungry which is unusual for a Mexican restaurant. Total tab with tip without the coupon would have been $110 which is too high for this place/food. As it is we spent $75 with deal, tax and tip. Overall the restaurant was loud, service fair, and food average for a very high price. We will not return."
    Dined on 10/18/2013
  • "Jose the server we had was amazing. He made excellent suggestions about the menu and was very knowledgable."
    Dined on 10/14/2013
  • "Go for the guacamole and maybe a margarita. Other than that, the rest of the place is underwhelming and very expensive for Mexican. Waitstaff is average and on the few times I've been here it seems like they are in training."
    Dined on 9/13/2013