Malo

4.5
932 reviews
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$30 and under
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Latin American
MALO is Des Moines’ destination for classic Mexican cuisine. From tacos, fajitas and enchiladas to burgers, salads and more, MALO offers all the dishes you love in a lively, energetic atmosphere.
What 932 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
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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SS
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Good food and atmosphere. The service was awesome but I personally do not like the pub chairs. The noise level was a little much but overall a good dining experience.

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TB
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The service was great. I was able to make a reservation on Saturday for that evening. Loud atmosphere, but not so loud you can’t talk. The tables weren’t scrunched together so tight that you can eat off your neighbor’s plate. Good beer selection.

Salsa wasn’t great, but the guacamole was fine and the fajitas were tremendous.

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OT
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dinner was awesome! Great food, service, and ambiance. We are definitely coming back!

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MT
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 4

Their happy hour special no longer includes food or beer.

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B
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 2

Food was good. Dining area is very open and loud. Fine for a group of friends, not a good place for a date.

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HC
Des Moines
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 1ambience 4

Let me first say that I love Malo. We had horrible service during this visit. We waited for at least 10 mins for the hostess to come to the hostess stand and then another 10 for the waitress to bring water. The waitress service continued to be poor through the visit. There were literally 20 patrons in the restaurant so they weren’t even busy! Food was great as always!

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EH
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

My food was good, not great. Two others in my group said it was ok but the last person said their burrito was way to sweet to be edible. The service by our waitress was excellent.

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OT
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Our waiter was great. It was great for adults and kids. The flavor of food was really good. The meat in the General Malo tacos that several people got was so tough I had to pull most out of the taco.

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OT
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Mother’s Day

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FA
Minneapolis
3 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was great, and the portion sizes were perfect. The place was packed but we still received great service and did not have to wave anyone down to get our servers attention. We enjoy Malo and tend to go there for special occasions. They are a great place to go with friends or family!

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DD
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Delicious. The tacos had home made tortillas, fresh ingredients, prepared just right. My margarita was not overly sweet, and great flavor.

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GG
Chicago
27 reviews
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

The restaurant had a very cool vibe, and the menu was enticing. However, we felt the food, though fresh, lacked seasoning and had bland taste. We had to add salt to every dish including the salsa to bring out the flavor.

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MW
Kansas City
2 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent as always. I am not sure why my wife and I don’t get here more often.

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R
Des Moines
22 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Food and service were great except the waitress didn’t enter one of our party’s dinner. She got her good when everyone else was done. The waitress took responsibility but made no offer. Too bad because every thing else was great.

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DT
Des Moines
10 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We sere seated promptly and our server arrived soon after. Chips and salsa were delivered to the table promptly. We were dining for lunch and the food and service were excellent! The portobello mushroom taco was amazing. Others dined on the Blackened Salmon Salad and Mexi-Cali Burrito. Always a good meal at Malo!

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OT
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great staff and the food and drinks were tasty!

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RB
Phoenix
26 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 3

Fine food, very good service... beautiful themed. I would return...

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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on April 24, 2019
Overall 1food 4service 1ambience 3

Service absolutely horrible. Took 25 minutes to get drink on a Wednesday night. Dinner served 70 minutes after being sat. Food was good but service will put this place out of business soon.

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KC
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on April 24, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Lunch menu seemed a tad expensive and they give you way too much food. But the food was excellent.

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P
Des Moines
2 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Patio was enjoyable, food wass good and service was excellent

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C
Des Moines
8 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Food is good and the full bar is a plus. On the higher price side for Mexican food. Give it a try, we have always had a good time.

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T
Des Moines
2 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Sunday Brunch. The service was outstanding she was friendly and quick with our drinks and or food. She allowed us to have a conversation I was not too pushy. The food was amazing I had the all you can eat tacos I can only get through five portions were very good. I especially enjoyed the handmade corn tortillas. I look forward to coming back to Malo in the future

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JB
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and service were amazing. Would highly recommend!

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great Mexican! Great queso! Filet Minion fajitas were excellent.

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SK
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

Nice environment, food was very bland. Ordered the steak fajitas and there was no flavor or seasonings. Would not go back.

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SP
1 review
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great, never been there before. Service was outstanding both waitress and hostess. Food was great, and looking forward to our next visit.

Thank you.

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TV
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

The food was amazing, table service was great. The noise was deafening and the young women at the hostess desk were not super friendly and spent a lot of time eye rolling.

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OT
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was my wife’s 30th birthday with her friends and family. We absolutely loved the excellent food and margaritas at Malo. Malo is one of our favorite places in Des Moines and we’ll definitely be back!!!

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H
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The overall experience exceeded expectations.
Our server, Drew, was excellent. He is a great ambassador for the restaurant and the downtown area.

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A
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food was great. Our server was very polite and attentive. 5 stars, would recommend to anyone!

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OT
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 4

The food was great. However, one member of my table didn’t receive their food until later. Because of this, the management took care of the mistake. Overall a 4 out of 5 experience - we’ll be back!

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OT
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

I had a stuffed seafood chili relleno. The oil used to fry it was slightly off and dominated the flavor. I really miss your seafood risotto you had several years ago and wish you would bring it back. I have not found a satisfying meal to replace it at Malo.

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MM
Salt Lake City
31 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My first time at Malo and loved it!!
I had the specialty lobster and pork tacos, both were
excellent.
Definitely will go back.

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CC
Des Moines
12 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

We had an Open Table reservation due to a busy March Madness weekend. We were seated right away, our fantastic server, Drew, answered all of our questions, suggested a drink choice and was very helpful. I am vegetarian and really appreciated having 3 choices for meat free tacos, and yes, I had one of each. The rest of the family had pork and beef tacos and husband truly enjoyed his seafood enchilada. Only regret, we decided against having the bottomless Mimosas, next time! Thanks Malo, we'll be back!

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SK
1 review
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Interesting and attractive atmosphere. Good service. Very good food. Bit pricey. Enjoyed ourselves very much. Would definitely recommend!

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OT
New England
3 reviews
Dined on March 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love Malo for the whole combination of everything together. One of my favorite places in Des Moines! Being from New Mexico, I’m always happy to find a place for my Mexican food fix, and Malo does it really well

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ML
Denver
6 reviews
Dined on March 20, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

One of our favorite restaurants!!! Great food, great service

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SR
1 review
Dined on March 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great tasting food. Needs improvement in amnience and speed of service during lunch.

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KC
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 3ambience 5

The food for the most part was good. Only seen my server 3 times and I felt you should be more attentive. It wasn't that busy.

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BA
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on March 14, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 3

In all honesty, I went there for happy hour..ordered an original margarita. I'm not sure what kind of happy hour it was, because my drink wasn't discounted. My waiter failed to let me know that when asking if I wanted salt, that it was an extra $4...and because i ordered during the happy hour time frame, the discount was that price for the salt.....disappointing. This is the only place I've experienced that does that.

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