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Impala Cantina y Taqueria

4.1
33 reviews
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$30 and under
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Mexican
Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Great for Outdoor Dining
  • Good for Groups

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About

Impala Cantina y Taqueria is an authentic Mexican cantina restaurant in Washington, DC. The kitchen has elevated the classics of Mexican street food to give it a modern feel. The atmosphere at Impala Cantina y Taqueria is fun and casual, and a full bar serves up margaritas and other classic cocktails as well as wine and beer.

Start dinner at Impala Cantina y Taqueria with some antojitos such as flautas de pollo, ensalada Caesar, totopos y salsa and mole chicken wings. There are plenty of tacos to choose from as well, like carne asada and chorizo. Larger plates include Baja fish tacos and carne asada.

Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Mexican
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Hours of operation
Brunch: Saturday & Sunday: 12:00pm - 4:00pm; Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm, Saturday: 4:00pm - 11:00pm, Sunday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm
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Phone number
(202) 733-3427
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Private party facilities
We have a private dining room on the second floor that can accommodate up twelve guests.
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Private party contact
Ian Holt: (202) 733-3427
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
13th St. NE
Additional
Banquet, Bar Dining, Beer, Cocktails, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch
What 33 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.1based on all time ratings
4.0
food
3.9
service
3.9
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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4.0Dined on November 4, 2016

Impala has great tacos and enchiladas - we really enjoyed our dinner and will definitely be back.

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4.0Dined on October 15, 2016

The food was pretty good, Mole Chicken Enchiladas.

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5.0Dined on October 15, 2016

Impala is a great location for a dinner date, family or friend gathering or special occasion. The food is exceptional, light, and flavorful. They have a great taco menu that cannot be beaten on a value, taste, and price level. The drinks are strong, our waitress and bartender are super accommodating and gracious. It was the perfect combination for a birthday and a landing pad to start a mini pub crawl on H Street. After dinner, check out playing video games at the Arcade (e.g. Donkey Kong & Super Mario Brothers), head to Gallery O on H for music or a fire dancing show (when scheduled), go indoor miniature golfing at H Street Country Club, or go dancing at the Rock N Hotel. Typically no or low cover required, all are 1 block away, and this combination makes for a fun, affordable, eclectic, and memorable evening.

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4.0Dined on September 2, 2016

Good food, just needs a little seasoning (like salt). Ambiance is great, especially on the patio. Service could use some work, but I'm not one to rush my margaritas (I'd just like more than one per hour).

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5.0Dined on July 6, 2016

Probably could use another server, the one server seemed a bit stretched. Food was tasty, drinks were tasty. Over all the experience was enjoyable, and the server worked diligently to help us, even though she was in the weeds.

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4.0Dined on June 11, 2016

Loved this place! Great salsa and guacamole. I loved that they had Daiya cheese as a non-dairy option for the enchiladas. Their chips were also great.

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3.0Dined on June 4, 2016

On this trip, my companion and I just had guacamole, salsa and chips, and drinks. The guac was great, the chips are "okay" (the kind that split apart - also not warm) and the salsa was "okay." Nothing special. My margarita was mediocre (may have been the house tequila). As far as past visits for dinner, the chicken verde enchiladas were very good along with the grilled corn. Overall, a decent spot!

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1.0Dined on June 1, 2016

This was my third and last time at this resturant! There service was lacking! The bartender, part owner from what I hear is rude and makes the worst drinks. We had to flag him down for assistance and it was not that busy. He even said something offensive that I did not appreciate.

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5.0Dined on May 27, 2016

Great service. Brittney was attentive and remembered us from a previous visit.

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4.0Dined on May 13, 2016

There are several tofu-based vegan options on the menu, including tacos and enchiladas.

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5.0Dined on May 7, 2016

Fantastic experience. Food is excellent - tortilla's are homemade, guacamole is super fresh, lime for margaritas is fresh squeezed. Apparently, one of the owners is from a Mexican family and they utilize the family recipes. Lots of fresh and natural ingredients. Tacos are great, plus there is lighter and vegetarian fare. Decor is very tasteful and authentic. Really nice low key bars (there is one on both floors) and outdoor seating. Value for money is incredible. Very reasonably priced. Low key but classy.

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5.0Dined on April 23, 2016

Everything in this place was great. The first four tacos I had were so good...I ate 4 more. The server was excellent. The hostess was awesome. Everyone was so polite and interactive. The manager came by and asked how the night was going. Impala es excelente.

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5.0Dined on April 23, 2016

Brand new waiter, Robert, served us. He made great recommendations for our enchiladas and was extremely courteous the whole time we were there. Margaritas were also great. If you think all Mexican food is spicy, this place is fantastic for the person who likes Mexican but has trouble with the level of heat. They can also turn it up a notch as well. I highly recommend Impala for when the weather is nice because of the outdoor seating area.

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3.0Dined on April 2, 2016

Went on a Saturday evening, it wasn't too busy. We asked for chips and salsa and had to wait 20 min to get them while parties that were seated after us got them first. I had asked for sour cream and it did not come. We asked the runner to bring it, he didn't. By the time the server came around, I was mostly finished with my meal. The food tasted great and the margarita had a good flavor. Will go back to give them another shot.

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2.0Dined on April 1, 2016

I wouldn't recommend Impala to anyone. While the atmosphere and outdoor patio are nice, the margaritas and tacos were barely edible. The service was awful as well - we ordered chips & salsa and other appetizers and they never came out. We finally just cancelled the order once our main meals arrived. I mean, how hard is it to throw together chips & salsa? Overall, not a great experience.

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1.0Dined on March 8, 2016

I had previously dined at this restaurant and it was great! This time around not so much. The service was slow, drinks watered down and the food bland, so sorry to see their losing their touch.

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5.0Dined on March 5, 2016

This was our first time and we had a 7:30 reservation. The whole experience was just Awesome!! The food 🌮 was Delicious, bartender🍺 was Excellent ( didn't get his name, he was black with the beard) and our waitress Brittany❤️ was soooo Sweet! We will definitely be back with friends and family 👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽👍🏽. Thanks, Kelly

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4.0Dined on February 4, 2016

Friends and I went here, to grab a bite with someone from out of town. The waitress was really sweet, the guac was delicious, the food well-priced, and the pork was by far better than the chicken and beef. We all had great meals at a great price.

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3.0Dined on January 30, 2016

Great Mexican food is hard to find in DC. This is about as close as you get. We come here often because we love their homemade margaritas and street corn. Their shrimp tacos and their chirzo tacos are awesome. Defiantly ask what the server recommends.

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5.0Dined on January 24, 2016

Impala could hang with some of the best ones in Southern California. Also order the fish tacos!

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4.0Dined on December 31, 2015

The location, service and drinks were fantastic. The food was average and lacked flavor.

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5.0Dined on December 13, 2015

This is an excellent small authentic Mexican resturant, doing a limited menu very well. Portions are large, prices low, and the qualty is excellent. I highly recommend the fish tacos and the unusual and tasty squash casserole accompaniment. Impala is across the street fom Atlas Theater, making it perfect for pre- or post-theater dinner. Am especially glad that it keeps late hours.

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5.0Dined on December 5, 2015

Their marinated tofu enchiladas- perfect for vegetarians

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3.0Dined on December 5, 2015

Good atmosphere, pleasant waitstaff. Chips and salsa good, but tacos and other dishes pretty hit or miss.

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5.0Dined on November 20, 2015

Brittney our server was excellent super friendly and spot on with descriptions of menu. The tongue taco was amazing and unique. The tacos are authentic and all of the meats except for the steak were extremely tender. The margaritas were strong and not too sweet.
Can't wait for the bands to be playing again in the summer! But we will be back before then for the food and our excellent server.

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5.0Dined on October 30, 2015

Impala is a fantastic (and needed) addition to the H Street restaurant scene. With our modest sized group of 6, the waitstaff was perfectly attentive and the kitchen quickly turned around our entree order. I knew with my first bite into the chips and guac that this place was the Mexican food I'd been waiting for in DC.

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4.0Dined on September 11, 2015

Margaritas were great. I normally order them on the rocks, but the server recommended frozen, and she was right. NOT the usual syrupy sweet slush.

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1.0Dined on September 6, 2015

No nachos on the menu, you have to pay for even just chips with salsa, and they charge you an arm and a leg for entrees and drinks. Patio severely underlit and claustrophobic. Literally on top of those next to you, get ready to get cozy with wacky strangers. Also get accosted by the neighborhood ruffians while you eat. The inside didn't look much better. Waiter asked all the tables around us if they wanted more food/drinks before she even asked us once. My wallet hurt after this and I felt extremely dissatisfied. Really ruined that the FOOD did seem to taste good and authentic. Recommend going elsewhere on the strip if you want to have a nice meal with someone

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2.0Dined on August 29, 2015

The fish tacos were painfully spicy, and I am not squeamish about spice.

We were charged $25 for a single margarita with better liquor, so be very careful. The first time I came here the house margarita was good, but this time it was subpar.

When we brought our concerns up with management, the gentleman was rude and dismissive.

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2.0Dined on August 22, 2015

Everything was great - our large group was seated at a great table outside as soon as we arrived, we got waters right away and drinks soon thereafter, the chips, guac and salsas were really tasty - and then we got our main dishes. What a disappointment. Every dish was boring and bland. What happened to the good flavors from the appetizers? I'd go back for drinks and apps, but not for dinner again.

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4.0Dined on July 28, 2015

Solid affordable and authentic Mexican food on H street. Roof was closed due to t-storm threats but would have been nice option. Food was well prepared and came out quickly, although we were there early on a Tues pm. Shared pork and chicken tacos - very nice - and beef chimmi entree. Beans and rice were super delish and not heavy. Would definitely return.

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5.0Dined on June 8, 2015

This is great authentic food! We traveled from Alaska and I wanted to try places that tourists don't know and we wanted a genuine experience and we got one here. We arrived and were seated outside, within minutes a thunderstorm rolled through; we were quickly moved upstairs to a great window seat. Our server was wonderful and attentive. The food was hot and delicious and the beer yummy and cold.
Give this place a try, you won't be disappointed.

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3.0Dined on January 16, 2015

This restaurant features a straightforward and tasty menu of flavorful cantina offerings. The drink menu is similarly simple, albeit not clearly labeled (some of the items marked "drinks" are actually fancy and beautiful shots).

The location is not large, but there is plenty of room for parties of 2. Anything more than that would definitely need a reservation.

The service was friendly, albeit absent periodically. The staff was friendly and genuinely interested in your satisfaction, however, for the short peak of service, seemed to disappear when we were interested in placing an order or in need of water refills.

Overall, I would definitely recommend trying Impala Cantina. The food was tasty and the atmosphere was conducive to a relaxed and upbeat meal. Great for a date or a friend.

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