El Mercado Modern Cuisine
El Mercado Modern Cuisine brings you the daily adventure of obtaining fresh ingredients from the market to cook the perfect supper. At El Mercado Modern Cuisine, we take this every day trip and transform it into a modern dining experience. We carefully choose our ingredients for our hand crafted cocktails and dishes to bring you the best expression of our Modern Cuisine. Offering a Taco Tuesday special of 3 Tacos for $10, Happy Hour from Tuesday-Friday (5pm-7pm) & all night on Wednesday.
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Late Night Weekend Happy Hour
$6 House Wines, $6 Well cocktails and discounted food items.
Weekday Happy Hour
$6 House Wines, $6 Well cocktails and discounted food items.
Wednesday All Night Happy Hour
$6 House wines, $6 well cocktails and discounted food items ALL NIGHT
Taco Tuesday Specials
Enjoy 3 Tacos for $10 and $6 Margaritas all night on Tuesdays.
We will definitely go back with our friends and family very soon👍👍👍.
First time! Everything was great! Will definitely go back.
Exactly what I expected it to be! An intimate setting with amazing presentation and service. Booked a party of 12 for my birthday and honestly, could not have asked for more. The food was amazing - the cocktails were beautifully presented - all of my guests had a great time. It was exactly what I wanted!
Absolutely amazing. Trying new places to get away from the mediocre, strip mall/mall restaurants of Newport Beach, we went to El Mercado in downtown Santa Ana today for lunch. Great food with high end ingredients with perfect flavors. Very reasonable prices. We had the baby gem salad, seafood cocktail, Jamaica tacos and “mini mole”. All were delicious, very clean and pure. The cocktail menu was creative and very likable. Service was perfect, Armando was great, and the chefs/owners came out and made everyone feel welcome. They even bought us a signature cocktail. We can’t say enough about this restaurant. Excellent.
The chilaquiles had little to no flavor but the pancakes were the best! Over all we had a great time.
One of the few places that has Bacanora from Sonora.
Horrible Valentines Dinner experience. Food was good but they seemed to be understaffed. I got there at 8pm for our reservation and sat at the center table closest to the door. After my order was placed, it took 20 minutes to get my salad, another 20 for the main course, and another 30 for dessert (1.25 hours total at the restaurant). We ran out of water frequently, and servers barely came around to check on us throughout the whole dinner. People that got there after us were receiving their desert before us. I asked for the check and to get the dessert to go because we were over the dinner experience. That alone took a total of 30 minutes lol. And then I checked the to-go bag in the car, and they only gave me one of the two desserts lol. The staff was nice, but you can tell they were all multi-tasking and shorthanded. They acted as if they were on top of it...but you can obviously tell they weren't. I don't mind the passive aggressive service, but the execution and delivery to get stuff done was super off that night. Thanks for the terrible Valentines Date El Mercado!
I wanted this place to be great but didn’t go well tonight. The drinks and atmosphere are great but the substance behind food quality and service doesn’t match. Food wasn’t anything to be stoked about. Nor was the service.
Honestly, the place is a great place for a date in terms of ambiance but the food is so salty and mediocre at best. The back kitchen was poorly ran with timing, the entrees took about 25 min to be served AFTER to the salad, AND was incorrectly cooked so they took it back and redelivered after 10 minutes. That's a complete waiting and stoppage of 35 min for an entree. The service didn't even offer anything complimentary or took off the entree for being wrong. Highly reviewed place but sorely disappointed, would only recommend if you're into ambiance.
Ambiance was definitely cute and romantic, and I couldn't have been happier about the service. However, we dined here for Valentine's day and what we paid for what we got was insane. $65/person for a three-course meal sounds fine, but the three courses were all very small. You are given very little food for the price, and on top of that, they charged us a $25 service fee.
Everything was absolutely delicious!! Great spot in DTSA.
Food and drinks are amazing! Can't wait to go back to eat the beef shank and fresh tortillas again.
Went for birthday brunch and it was incredible. Best corn tortillas I’ve ever had. Tons of gluten free options as well. Highly recommend and hope to come back soon.
This is a wonderful establishment that serves outstanding food with great attitude. I've been coming here for the past few years since it opened and I am never disappointed. The cocktail list is amazing too. Great for large parties (6-10 people) because the dishes are fun to share and with more people you get more variety. Highly recommended!
I adore this quaint spot and just love all their yummy food and amazing libations. Service can stand some improvement but all in all, this is my favorite restaurant in Orange County!
In retrospect, I would say expectations are VERY important in enjoying this restaurant. The food is, in fact, fresh, tasty, and creative. But if you think you will get chips and salsa before the meal, think again. The quesadilla was done with a blue corn tortilla, and was quite nice, as were the pork belly tacos we tried. If you aren't expecting a full-on traditional version of those, I think you'll find the food very attractive. Our favorite dish, actually, was the cauliflower and tomato, which had a truly outstanding blend of flavors. I ended up giving four stars overall to the food, but only because the quesadilla and tacos were a four, as was the Pisco Sour. But the cauliflower was a full-on five. I would certainly go back. And like a lot of things in life, if I go in expecting to simply enjoy it for what it is, El Mercado is a winner.
Christmas Eve dinner. The mezcal cocktail creativity was over-the-top fantastic. The meals are served in family style- from small plates to plates of multiple servings- each one we ordered was bite-by-bite outstanding. Masterful chef! The service was truly caring and respectful. Already have advised friends and family as a must do restaurant. Thank you all.
Not your typical Mexican restaurant. Don’t expect combination plates, chips and salsa or mariachis. Open your mind to what Mexican food can be and you will not be disappointed. Dishes are designed to be shared. Amazing flavors, great cocktails.
Food and drinks were excellent as always. We showed up a bit early for our reservation and were quickly accomodated.
The Night of the Altars is a busy night in Santa Ana. I would have thought that after a few years of operation the management and wait staff would have been prepared. I will come back yet I advise the management of the restaurant to prepare for nights when events in the city will bring more guests to their property.
We had a reservation time at opening so it was quiet for awhile, but it did start getting busy.
Service was amazing
Food was amazing
Drinks were amazing
This place is definitely on my repeat list.
Everyone in my party also enjoyed it.
If you’re here for brunch, must have the pancakes.
Not pleased with the service.
My girlfriend an I went for the 3-year anniversary celebration. Great food and service as always. Really enjoyed the special drinks for the anniversary. This is one of our regular spots, definitely will continue to go.
Much improved since they changed the menu. Great staff and now you can say “Taco Maria, Bite Me!”
El Mercado has upped their game by updating their menu. Creative yet accessible, it’s a perfect choice.
Excellent food, hand prepared, artistic presentation. Everything was delicious.
Smelled like a sewer. Service awful - brought wrong dishes. Taquitos tasted like frozen from Costco.