El Jefe

4.4
217 reviews
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$30 and under
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Mexican
Our menu is inspired by the Mexican regions of Yucatán, Oaxaca, and Veracruz. We strive to respect the influences and traditions of these diverse cultures to bring you food that is uniquely El Jefe.

We believe in doing things the right way. Not because it’s trendy or cool, but because it’s right. We change our menu with the grow season, supporting our neighbors and the terroir of Colorado. We are not your average Mexican joint, rather a reflection of our environment and beliefs.

We hand make our tortillas every day. All of our pork comes from one whole hog. Our chefs breakdown the whole animal, for chorizo, appetizers, stocks, soups, and entrees. Nothing is wasted. We do this out of respect for the animal and for the people who raised them for us. Anything we can produce in our kitchen is done by us, with love. No frills, just good food.

We do an amazing brunch on the weekends, and by default or menu is nearly 100% gluten free.
What 217 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
4.5
food
4.2
service
4.4
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
81% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MK
Denver
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

Great outdoor setting. Service is okay, but food and environment is great

J
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was awesome! Drinks were great! Great neighborhood joint for a Mexican meal and mezcal cocktail.

OT
Denver
2 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Meg was awesome and the food was fantastic!

OT
Denver
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As always great service and delicious food. The paloma is tasty.

RS
New England
1 review
Dined on July 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was our 3rd time at El Jefe, and, per usual, it was delicious. The service was prompt; they kept our waters filled.

JL
Denver
11 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

El Jefe is one of my favorite restaurants. The staff is knowledgable and friendly, and the food is fresh, thoughtfully prepared and delicious. I love their guacamole; all of the tacos are incredible, and of course there is an incredible selection of tequila. I love sitting on the patio for brunch as well as dinner.

OT
Denver
26 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went for brunch the the food was very good ,fresh tortillas

JC
Denver
2 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went here for the first time for my birthday. The food, the service, the drinks, and the ambiance were all fantastic!

c
Denver
32 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous Mexican food! From the margarita's to the chips and salsa, guacamole, and entrees. This place wowed us. The service was very attentive, helpful, friendly, competent, and efficient. We enjoyed the chicken tacos and slow braised pork carnitas. Our chosen 3 salsas were the verde, pico (with watermelon) and habanero. The habanero was our favorite mixture of hot and sweet. The guacamole was delicious. The house margarita was tasty but the machete was even better. The slow braised pork carnitas came with perfectly roasted fingerling potatoes, 2 salsas, jalapenos, pickled onions, greens, and tortillas. So good and no dairy in site. The beef barbacoa won rave reviews from our table as well; a perfect blend of flavors. We'll be back soon.

J
Savannah
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent place and great food.

AD
Denver
5 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Great staff, good brunch selection.

OT
Denver
2 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Service was slow and kids meal prices were a bit steep. $12 for kids nachos is a bit pricey in my opinion. Spicy Margarita and chicken tacos were great!

AJ
1 review
Dined on July 14, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

The selection wasn’t too big and I didn’t love what I got but the service was AMAZING from ALL the staff!

T
Atlanta
3 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 2ambience 5

The food was good,but not as described on the menu. This could have been more the servers error than any fault of the place as a whole, but both the entree of carnitas and the flan dessert did not come to our table as described. As a whole, it’s hard to call this a “Mexican” restaurant despite the abundance of tequilas and the menu descriptions. It tastes like good American food served in a Mexican presentation.

OT
Calgary
2 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Great wait staff and a very friendly environment. The food was good, wishing for more flavor in my chicken taco. Carnitas were great & the guacamole was yummy with a delicious lime flavor. Margs were the beat and it was easy to find street parking on a weekday. Overall it was a fun experience.

CS
Denver
1 review
Dined on July 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this neighborhood restaurant. thanks for another great experience

S
Denver
4 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service interesting menu options. Very helpful waitstaff.

OT
Denver
1 review
Dined on June 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As always we loved our experience at El Jefe. The food, staff, and environment is perfect for any occasion.

SR
Denver
11 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Maybe the best tacos in Denver. It was my first time at El Jefe. Great food and drinks. Our server was great.

K
Denver
14 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

If our server had done a better job, we would have given a better review. The amazing food was underscored by her mediocre service. When she forgot to enter one of our entrees, we would have appreciated receiving it complimentary or at least an offer for a dessert? She just seemed to easily dismiss it when it’s so easy to circle it back around for the customer.

m
Baltimore
8 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

This was our third time at El Jefe and with each visit, it just seems to become more mediocre. This time the guacamole was tasteless, with big chunks of under-ripe avocado that wouldn't even stick to the chips. The entrees were boring. In a town where everyone seems to be specializing in tacos, the mushroom and chicken tacos we ordered were forgettable. There was a large party inside, and the servers were friendly but treated us as a distraction rather than valued customers. I don't see a compelling reason to return.

JB
Denver
14 reviews
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great neighborhood gem, good food and excellent drinks! Would recommend highly!

CC
Cincinnati
6 reviews
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Meg was excellent! She anticipated all of our needs with a 2+ year old and a 6 month old

MP
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server (Richard) was wonderful and we always love the food, drinks and atmosphere!

T
Denver
1 review
Dined on June 7, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Appetizers were a little on the small side. Drinks were great! Al Carbon (pork belly) was Amazing!

IJ
1 review
Dined on May 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was awesome. I love tacos and the Marge s are smol and sexy. Please give me more tacoooos

Thanks!

OT
Savannah
1 review
Dined on May 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Especially wonderful if you have kids! Staff are so accommodating and friendly, food is excellent and fresh.

VV
Chicago
8 reviews
Dined on May 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great time at El Jefe. Food was great and a great value. Excellent service.

d
Denver
5 reviews
Dined on May 21, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

This restaurant serves good, fresh food, has good happy hour values, plenty of seating, takes reservations, and we really like it. It's great for the neighborhood, and for people like us who have a daughter who teaches nearby at the Denver Montessori Junior/Senior High School (a DPS public school). They have a full bar and nice mixed drink selection. A full range of ages like this place, including families with young children. Recommended.

J
Denver
20 reviews
Dined on May 19, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

I had heard good things about El Jefe and was excited to try it out for brunch. Granted, we were a large group of 10, but our server seemed overwhelmed from the minute we sat down. It took forever to get drinks - the bar staff was also clearly upset with our server for not running drinks fast enough, the bar staff ended up delivering drinks and taking drink orders for most of the meal and they moved quickly. Then it took a very long time for our food to arrive and when it did it was very basic. The flavor on my huevos rancheros was good, but the chicken tacos that my friend had looked very sad and tasted bland. Overall a pretty disappointing experience, though I am still interested in trying it for dinner with a smaller group.

SC
Denver
15 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 3

Easy neighborhood location and the staff was very friendly, but it was slow slow slow...

SC
Denver
1 review
Dined on May 14, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 4

The last time we went, the food was much better and the service was pretty good. The food this time was a bit lackluster and disappointing. The service was ok, and the margaritas were excellent. Great location and a nice spot, it's a shame the menu has been pared down quite a bit and the food was not up to the quality of our last visit.

LM
Denver
20 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

Tortillas were wet, difficult to eat the tacos that fell apart. Fajitas were good. Clearly had a staff issue, as wait staff was stretched far too thin.
Won’t be returning

f
Denver
6 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The flight of salsas are amazing!
We especially liked the bottomless mimosas, sangria's and bloody Marys because they are interchangeable! Great service. Handmade tortillas are a plus as well!

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

We’ve loved this place for some time, and Mother’s Day brunch was amazing!

WM
Denver
4 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Sat on the patio for Mother’s Day brunch. Had a great time and great food. Decided we should return often.

KM
Denver
26 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

So so so good. We all (4 of us) loved our food and drinks. Maybe our new favorite brunch spot!

OT
Houston
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Thanks for taking care of me!

k
Tampa
5 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 3

Slow service. Slow food. Restaurant ran out of multiple items and made no attempt to apologize or provide alternative options.

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

Good food with excellent service, Rebecca was super.

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