Empellon Taqueria

4.6
1550 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Mexican
Open Dinner & Brunch. We opened our doors on March 22nd, 2011 with the intention of treating tacos with a high level of respect and serving them in a fun environment.  Which is how I believe tacos should be enjoyed. We designed the menu with the idea that most ingredients worth eating can benefit further by being placed atop a well-made tortilla. We push our kitchen team to explore the ubiquitous flavors that we all love about Mexican cooking in this country as well as the less obvious ones that we all should love. Empellon's approach to cuisine is informed by authenticity but is not limited by it.
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What Insiders Are Saying

The Infatuation
7.4

As we’re all well aware, Mexican food in Manhattan generally blows. Empellon hasn’t come to save the day, but it isn’t adding to the problem either. While nothing blew us away, the food was solid with the good outweighing the bad.

Ratings 7.0-7.5:These are your neighborhood standbys - the places that you’ll happily hit for some pasta or a quick salad, but not a restaurant you are bringing your parents or (god forbid) a date to. The true embodiment of good but not great.
What 1550 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.6
service
4.4
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 14 hours ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

amazing experience, cant wait to go back!

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TW
Hawaii
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

The food is very good and it is a nice place, though noisy. The host at reception was unfriendly, bordering on rude. Wait staff were friendly.

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KK
New York Area
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Super friendly service staff, delicious food that came out fast, chic but casual ambiance. I'll definitely be back and I highly recommend this spot to anyone looking for a great dining experience in NYC.

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k
New York Area
24 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Delicious drinks - good food, limited menu
As for downtown Mexican - much more comfortable to sit in than many others with better service and drinks and not crazy prices - the most disappointing part of the dinner were the chips and salsa!
Fun atmosphere

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s
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

3 of our party of 6 were stuck in traffic and arrived 15 minutes late for our reservation. When the host seated us, he told us (and not in a nice way) that we would have to order quickly. I have worked in restaurants for many years and this set the mood for dinner and totally turned me off. Our server was lovely and food was good, but not good enough to have me recommend this place after our host's greeting.

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OT
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

Food was great, service was iffy, it was packed and there were only two waitresses

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Meh. Not worth the money. Dos Toros’ tacos are as good.

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PM
Houston
5 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great little spot making modern versions of authentic Mexican flavors. Margaritas are the best I’ve had in New York so far (I’m a Texas native, so I have plenty of margarita experience. Ha). Service could not have been better. It’s small and gets packed quickly, so always make a reservation though.

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s
New York Area
15 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Great drinks, taco selection and atmosphere. Would like to see more dessert options!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious and excellent

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DC
Washington DC
49 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

1st time visit - WOW

Perfect evening for my wife's birthday. Wonderful service - Adam really took care of us. Outstanding meal and drinks - can't wait to visit again.

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k
New York Area
22 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 5

The food is good but the service was terrible. We probably ended up staying there almost an hour longer because of it. It was like we were forgotten. Also, don't sit in the front room when it's cold outside. There's no canopy/enclosure for the front door so it's freezing anytime the door opens- which happens all the time.

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OT
Orlando
2 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great service from the manager to the bartender, host/hostess, and waitress skill.

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R
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

The guy at host stand almost made we want to leave with his attitude, but our amazing waitress/server made up for it.

Guacamole as good as ever and chips super fresh. Margaritas excellent. And tacos too.

The guy at front needs to be welcoming not rude.

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BR
San Francisco
31 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous in every way!! Every bite is delicious -- the tacos, of course, and particularly the lobster tacos and the brussel sprout tacos (I know doesn't necessarily sound the best but it is so flavorful). And do not miss the sopes -- Empellon makes the very best corn base (bean and quail eggs are particularly good). Also the cocktails really hit the spot -- love (love, love) the spicy cucumber ones. Lively atmosphere and attentive service -- great in every way!!

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s
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The cashew dipping sauce is amazing! For a slightly less noisy dining experience, get a seat in the back room. Service is attentive and friendly. Menu is inventive and delicious.

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R
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service and food were so good! Been wanting to go to this restaurant for quite some time! This was a perfect Restaurant Week venue.

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NF
1 review
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Really good food and service. Crowded and quite loud but that is normal and the atmosphere is great.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excelente atención de todo el staff

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A
New England
7 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Great margarita, very good guacamole, just so-so chili rellenos

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SS
Austin
2 reviews
Dined on January 29, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Get the brussel sprouts taco; you will not regret it. If you can make coming to happy hour work, the taco prices and margarita prices are hard to beat.

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MG
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 29, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 4ambience 3

Highly overpriced. Nothing special with tacos and shrimp cocktail was without sauce and missing flavors. Big disappointment.

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LE
Atlanta
6 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 5

Most everything was good, but I would definitely skip the churro french toast for brunch. It wasn't great. Service and drinks were great. And the atmosphere is awesome.

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome food! Amazing drinks!

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C
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined on January 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of our favorite stops in the West Village. We visit every time we’re in NYC.

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We had a nice brunch there. The service was great and they were very accommodating we had a baby and needed a high chair. Good food, drinks and service!

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NY
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great brunch choice. Tasty food, not too crowded.

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AL
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Incredibly delicious Mexican food. Great vegetarian options and delicious margaritas.

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SO
New York Area
32 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Brought a relative from San Diego and she described the tacos as the best she’s ever had. That should tell you something.

As always, Empellon does not disappoint. Props to the spicy cucumber and pear margaritas as well as the skirt steak, fish, and goat tacos. And the guacamole is pure delight. Arbol salsa, that’s a hot one.

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OT
Seattle
2 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

love the ambiance! perfectly suited for date night or a fun evening with friends. food was delicious and flavorful; not your tropical ho hum mexican joint. will be back for sure!

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DV
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Great for brunch. All the margaritas were
Delicious as well as all the salsas. Friendly staff.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Hostess was very accommodating. We had a high top and she was able to move us to better seating.

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OT
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 1

Sooooo loud and uncomfortable. I was there with my boyfriend for a mid week dinner. The table was very narrow (so we felt super close to our neighbors) but very long (so we felt far away from each other). So we could hardly hear each other. Luckily the food came out fast so we were in and out in 30 mins.

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BL
New York Area
13 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The location in the West Village is outstanding. The service is top notch and the generous filling in the tacos is commendable. I will be back!

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LB
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Food was good, but not great. The service was fast and our waitress was attentive. The biggest issue was the drinks. The margaritas were tasty but very weak and way overpriced for the lack of alcohol.

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OT
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food as usual! Was a bit disappointed that flour tortillas are no longer available but overall wonderful experience. Superior service & experience. Thank you!

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RF
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 1

Food and service were good, as expected, but the room is too dark and the noise level excruciating.

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LC
New York Area
27 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We have been wanting to try this place. When you enter from the front, you get the impression that it might just be a bar/pub. But we were pleasantly surprised to see a very nice dining room. We were seated in the back room, which isnt as noisy since you are away from the bar, but quite honestly, the front room was totally fine.

If you want great, creative tacos, this is your place! They come 2 per serving and I would recommend people in your party all order something different. We had the flank stake, fish tempura and duck. All were very good.

While they have some great apps (we had the guac & chips and the shishito peppers, the tacos are more than enough food if you wanted to stick to them.

While the peppers were tasty in their cheese sauce, I actually thought they were a little starchy.

Overall, a great place.

BTW, that cucumber spicy margarita is DAMN GOOD!

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service

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EK
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

I was so impressed by both the food and the drinks! My friends and I all loved it and will definitely come back again.

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