Border Grill - Downtown LA

4.4
1761 reviews
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$30 and under
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Mexican
Enjoy upscale, modern Mexican food in a vibrant setting at Border Grill, the hip, urban cantina from Chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger, Food Network’s “Too Hot Tamales”. Presenting the bold foods and flavors of Mexico, Border Grill has established a new standard for gourmet Mexican fare. With a menu of complex authentic dishes based on the home cooking of Oaxaca and the Yucatan, Border Grill takes Mexican food to a whole new level!
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What Insiders Are Saying

The Infatuation
7.7

All-around solid Mexican food with a slight corporate vibe.

Ratings 7.5-8.0:These are restaurants that are reliable, tasty, and particularly good for whatever we have deemed them “Perfect For.” Hit up a 7.7 for Date Night with confidence, as long as you don’t need the restaurant to be the most interesting thing that happens that night.
What 1761 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.4
service
3.9
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
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CF
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 2

Long wait for food and drinks, and yes, I know it was a Friday night. The food was pretty good but I think overpriced for a basic Mexican menu. Would not accommodate our group to split the bill up. We were not asking for separate checks but said they would do up to 4 cards but when the bill came they back pedaled on that and only allowed 2 cards to be used. Plus they automatically put on a 20% gratuity when the service was less than awesome so I do not tip that much for that level of service

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F
Los Angeles
8 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

We were looking for something not too expensive but interesting within walking distance of Disney Hall. We were late due to a bad Uber ride and informed our waitress we had exactly 55 minutes and asked if our food and check could be served in that time and assured yes. We were there for an hour and fifteen and had to ask a host for our check, but otherwise our server was very nice. In between my partner had some decent bar food for the price particularly his taco. I ordered 3 course from dine LA menu. Grilled calamari was fresh and good. Chicken mole was way sub par. Chicken was dry. Not much mole and it was flavorless anyway. Nice tres Leche to finish. It was very loud and looked run down. I will look for better options next time.

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A
San Francisco
23 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Work lunch with 11 people. Some of us did DineLA. The restaurant did a very nice job accommodating our large group. Our server was friendly and helpful. Options on the DineLA menu were great. I had the cauliflower appetizer, poblano chile entrée and churro tots dessert. It was a fun lunch!

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J
Baltimore
22 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 2

Some of the best guacamole I have ever had served with fresh warm tortilla chips. The tacos were really delicious. And the Brunch deal here is worth every penny. Service is also attentive and very friendly.

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MI
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

Normally great for lunch. I go there several times a month. This last time, the food came out lukewarm and not very good.

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G
Los Angeles
46 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food is always so good here!! It’s speedy but worth saving up!
Lively bar and fun crowd. Attentive staff great drinks!

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V
Los Angeles
16 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My favorite restaurant. What more can I say? Food is delicious, and the people there are wonderful

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DC
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 5ambience 2

Our server was the best part of this dinner. Food was COLD after a few attempts to make it actually warm/hot to consume. This place has totally gone downhill!

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SK
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

The food was reasonably good; we would have appreciated more choices, but the ingredients all seemed to be fresh. All in all, we would recommend it for people who are looking for a moderately priced meal near the Music Center, and are tired of eating in the Phil's cafeteria.

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B
Los Angeles
31 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food was well prepared, with good flavor and spice. Excellent service from Regina.

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KS
Hawaii
1 review
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

It took way too long to get our drinks. Drink and food orders were not correct. The server made a mistake on our bills. The food was good. The location was convenient for a dinner prior to seeing a show at the Ahmanson Theater.

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r
Los Angeles
30 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

We stopped for an early dinner on our way to a performance of the Eli chamber Orchestra at super auditorium. We have been fans of this restaurant for many many years, including when it was see you died. We love the freshly sourced ingredients and the flavors and the variety on the menu. We ordered one item from the regular menu their Peruvian Cervice. and in order to have a variety of things we ordered several items from the bar menu. The cervice was good, very fresh, and extremely tasty. We ordered a few of their small taco plates, and sadly the quality of those was not as good as in times past. The items were tasty but not warm. We attributed this to the fact that there was a large private party being held in the bar. Our desserts were outstanding, flanand they are small Churros with dipping sauce and whipped cream on the side. Server was outstanding, he knew we had a deadline to catch the lift over to the performance and got us out in plenty of time. Servers came by frequently to refill water and ask if we wanted additional wine or cocktails.

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JV
Los Angeles
55 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

The special, Venison Chile, was excellent. Drinks were delicious, and the server let us taste samples to help us decide. However, the experience was soured by being charged for (delicious) guacamole we didn’t order. As soon as we were seated, a guacamole and chips were set on our table. We assumed they were a complimentary “amuse bouche.” But later when I checked the bill, I discovered that we were charged $9.95 for them. We were in a hurry and so didn’t look closely at the bill until later. Frankly, this ruined my positive impression — had they asked, we might have ordered guacamole, but having it presented without asking, and then charging for it without mentioning it, seemed like a sneaky ripoff. So disappointing. I’ve dined here several times before, so this was a surprise. Glad I was paying because I’d be mortified if I’d suggested this place and my host was treated this way.

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T
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service! Great food!!! And loved the atmosphere!

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TC
1 review
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was fantastic and service was top notch! Everyone at my table love their food! Will be back!

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AS
Los Angeles
4 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great people there. The only reason they did not get a 5 on the overall is because we had to wait for them to set up the table for our party. We had reservations, but i get it large parties sometimes dont show.

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AC
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

The food was an interesting twist on Mexican cuisine. The food was good not great but good. They do have these amazing churro bites that we had at the end. Our waiter was a little slow but we were also a large party. Overall, it was an okay experience. Nothing but but also nothing extra ordinary. I will go back for sure.

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OT
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

Very slow service, 2 orders came cold and when sent back, took too long to be brought back

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JW
Los Angeles
26 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Food was very good. My encilladas however were barely warm, not hot. Service was spotty. Parking was easy.

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R
1 review
Dined on November 13, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Went to celebrate with a friend, we picked Monday to avoid a noisy rushed dinner. The restaurant was relatively empty when we got there (only 5 or so tables) then a large group of 20 showed up.

While the group was not overly loud or obnoxious the noise level increase substantially.

The waiter was great, and the food excellent. Because they were not crowded we were able to linger for over an hour after dinner in a nice conversation. We felt welcome to sit and talk.

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JO
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food and drinks

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CM
1 review
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

I am a fan of Susan and Mary Sue and this was my first visit to Border Grill LA. The food was good and different. It was a Sunday evening and the restaurant was quiet. The staff were very friendly and efficient. To be honest, I enjoyed Susan's Hen House Restaurant more 4 years ago when I visited and was very sad to hear that it had been closed. I will definitely visit Border Grill again.

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L
Los Angeles
252 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

Border Grill has been there for many years and there's a reason for that -- the food. It's always excellent and prepared just a little differently. Their Peruvian Ceviche is the best anywhere. It's a great place to go before going to the Music Center.

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n
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

The service was so on point! Friendly. Timely. Working as a team. Carlos was attentive and helpful.

Steak was perfectly cooked and tender. All our food was just the way we like it.

We will be back. We are always looking for yummy, fresh, well prepared Mexican food.

Thank you!

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KF
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 5, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 2

Great food and ok service. There were only a handful of other people eating there, but it seemed to take our server a reeeeeeallly long time to check in on us, and then especially to bring our check and bring it back to sign. We were in a rush to get to the theater, and the check process was a good half hour, after we asked several times. Super frustrating.

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MM
Los Angeles
7 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 3

I have been a Border Grill fan for many years. Unfortunately, this was a very disappointing experience. There was a very odd smell inside the restaurant, so we sat outside. Started with the guacamole. It was overly lemony. I add a bit of lemon the help with the color, but I always make it just before I need it. This had enough lemon to keep it fresh for days, which was probably the point. I ordered the shrimp tacos with mango salsa. The salsa and tortillas had a very strange flavor, almost off a bit. I ended up eating only the shrimp out of the three tacos (less than one whole shrimp per taco.) The rest of our party was happy with their food. Seems like a spot we won't be returning to.

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CB
Los Angeles
9 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

it was perfect for a quick bite after a long day at a conference up the block. Our waitress was spectacular

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OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service! Grateful for our server and food. Prefect for my mothers bday.

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RS
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

On the brunch/lunch menu, I had the tacos. Although very flavorful, it just wasn’t much food for a hunger eater. Parking in the parking garage on a Sunday adds another $10, more on weekdays.

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LC
Los Angeles
32 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Enjoyed a nice pre-Disney Hall dinner, inside as it was a bit chilly. I was disappointed that we missed the Julia Child tribute menu, but the Dia de las Muertes menu was fun. This is a reliable kitchen, good bar, fairly noisy (energetic) atmosphere even away from the bar. There was one large group (9 guests) in the room in which we were seated - I don't know if there are any private rooms. We walked to the restaurant from the Disney Hall, then back as the old shuttle system is either gone or no longer services Border Grill. It's an easy enough walk if you're fit and have enough time.

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OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and service is amazing, if I have one complaint, and it is minor, the acoustics make the room a bit noisy, but they do have a nice outside eating area if that bothers you. I also LOVE that there are no TVs in the dining area, just the bar area. I travel to LA four times a year for work and never miss a chance to go to Border Grill!

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DB
Palm Springs
10 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Border Grille used to be our favorite restaurant. We bought all the cookbooks and took cooking classes there. I had not been in a few years and was anxious to go back. It has gotten so stale. Many of the same dishes from 15 years ago are still on the menu and they were just OK and seemed to have lost their style, flavor punch, and innovation. Our waiter seemed preoccupied and uninterested and the restaurant was mostly empty on a Friday night. The interior had not changed and felt outdated. We left wondering if Mary Sue and Susan still had any involvement with the business. There are other innovative Nouveau Mexican Restaurants in LA like Bar Alma and Mercado that have taken the reins from the once great Border Grille.

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OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The ambiance of the restaurant was enjoyable as the decor correlated with the food served at the restaurant. Our waiter, Carlos, was not only inviting, but friendly. He demonstrated wonderful professionalism and made my experience at the restaurant memorable.

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LA
Los Angeles
4 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I will always be a fan of Border Grill!

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LR
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 1

Sadly, BG has clearly gone down hill. Our tacos were not even close to being warm, the margaritas tasted terrible. There were very few diners in the place and it seemed overall, sad. The fishy tacos had a way too fishy taste and smell. This used to be a stupendous restaurant in its day, but I will not be returning. Completely disappointing.

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DN
Hawaii
18 reviews
Dined on September 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Amazing dinner!!!!

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SH
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service is top notch. Very knowledgable and friendly staff. Love the chips and salsa. The salsa verde here is my fave. I recently had their salmon dish for lunch and it was cooked perfectly. The sauce was so delicious. Can't wait for our next dining experience!

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SV
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Always enjoy lunch at Border Grill! We started with the Queso Fundida -- decadently delicious! I had the grilled skirt steak which was so tasty; everything tasted so good! Our server (wish I knew her name) was delightful and attentive. Can't wait to eat there again!

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AM
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and great service. We asked to be seated in the dining room versus the bar and we’re accommodated, even though the dining room wasn’t technically “open.” We hadn’t been in awhile and had forgotten how good the food is there.

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a
Seattle
4 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food! Amazing service! Thank you Corinna C for the BEST service I have ever received and for making our experience at one of “dream” restaurants as awesome as it could possibly be!!

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