Empellon Taqueria

4.7
1502 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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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Mexican
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Hours of operation
Brunch
Sat, Sun 11:45 am–3:00 pm
Dinner
Mon–Thu, Sun 5:30 pm–11:00 pm
Fri, Sat 5:30 pm–12:00 am
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Phone number
(212) 367-0999
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
Alex Stupak
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
W 10th St
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Public transit
A,B,C,D,E,F,M Train to W4th. 1 Train to Christopher Street.
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Entertainment
An eclectic mix of background music, selected to enhance a fun and energetic dining experience.
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Gift Card
Additional
Banquet, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Private Dining

Empellón hosts an array of special events, private parties and dining functions for parties up to 150. We can accommodate corporate events, holiday parties, birthday celebrations, anniversary and engagement parties, bridal showers, rehearsal dinners, conferences, seminars and much more.

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Specials

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 1502 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
87% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
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1
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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 3

Extremely slow service! The food took forever to come....and when it did it looked cold and unappetizing! No apology for delayed food!!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

Good ambiance and excellent service, but the food is overpriced and not that good as you expected to be.

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G
New York Area
25 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A very pretty restaurant located in a extremely cool area of the village.
The menu was simple and delicious. Great drinks and even more delicious food.
A good value for the quality of food.
Excellent, attentive service.
I highly recommend!

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E
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 3ambience 3

This place is SMALL, and can get pretty loud. We loved the food though. The gauc and chorizo queso is a must!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 5, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Good spot and good location, good vibe and not too loud, lots of seating options. Recommend making reservation was packed at 7 on a Tuesday. Only issue was price - a little toppy I felt, based on other spots similar

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YB
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Tacos five stars, especially the lobster taco. Appetizers and desserts are good, but could be better. Service was excellent, and it’s a lovely spot for a meal with friends. I would recommend it. Empellon didn’t disappointment but the food could be even better.

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OT
Tulsa
2 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was fantastic! We loved the assortment of salsas, which were a great value. Service was excellent!

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f
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

Meal started with guacamole and "all 12 salsas," which were excellent, if a bit skimpy (a running theme). That was followed up by the halibut ceviche, which was not so excellent--the fish itself was fairly bland, despite being soaked in all that citrus juice, and there was not very much of it. Next came the goat tacos (a Friday special) and the sopes meatballs. Both quite good. Then came fish tacos, duck tacos, and barbacoa tacos--all mediocre to bad, and outrageous given the price. The cocktails were good if unspectacular.

I don't understand why this place is a hot reservation. Mexican food costs a lot in New York, we all have to accept that. I have adjusted to paying $3 for a street taco. If you're paying double or triple that, you would expect to get something significantly better than a street taco. These were far worse. The only good one was the goat special, which at $5 a pop, was also by far the cheapest and the best value. Maybe it was an off night, but given the price, I won't be back to find out.

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F
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I always enjoy the food here. Everything is just so tasty-your taste buds will thank you! the ambiance is energetic and fun and the service is always great, too!

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s
New York Area
20 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food is always wonderful. I’ve been here a number of times. Carlos, the manager, remembered us from the last time we dined at the restaurant. Everyone is extremely gracious and welcoming.

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R
New York Area
17 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The place is nice, the tacos are very good and the service was outstanding! A good variety of tequila and mezcal, and the margaritas were really good! Maybe a little expensive for tacos, but overall a very good experience.

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F
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Waitress was very helpful. Brussel sprout tacos nailed it. They were delicious. The 7 salsas made for a fun start with the family. A little disappointed in the queso fundido with shishito peppers and the fish tacos.

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r
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Simple stuff, but they nail it. Lamb tacos are out of this world.

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RN
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Service was fantastic. The cocktails and food were all interesting and delicious. Would highly recommend

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SP
San Francisco
31 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Empellon Taqueria consistently performs at a very high level -- outstanding tacos and accompaniments, attentive service, in a friendly, casual atmosphere. The pastrami tacos are special, as is the shishito queso funded.

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F
Los Angeles
22 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, service and atmosphere. Really impressed, everytime.

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SA
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We were a little late for our reservation, and once they got over the initial snit, the service was fab. I have been to al Pastor and have been wanting to drop in at Taqueria for some time, and it was worth the wait. Drinks were terrific, the food was really really tasty, and the service staff quite accommodating. We were in with a bunch of international folks in for a business meeting and they all (Portuguese, Peru, Brit, Columbian and American) really enjoyed the food...and the margaritas.

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R
Montreal
1 review
Dined on November 5, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

At this price for Mexican street food, it better be good. But it wasn’t. Except the pork tongue tacos, and the quality of the tortillas. Everything else was either “edible” or “ok” and one item, the plantain sopes fell into the “quite unpleasant to eat” category.

The cocktails we had tasted like juice with a splash of tequila.

Would not recommend.

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went for Sunday brunch. The service was great. The restaurant was quiet and the food was delicious!

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TR
Milwaukee
2 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Soooo good. My friend and i had a girls weekend in NYC and my favorite mexican joint happened to be out of reservations but i found this gem and so glad i did. I will definitely be returning and will make a res here before even thinking of that other place. LOL Great space, staff, ambiance, FOOD!!! The tacos were incredible btw!

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W
New York Area
79 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Always consistently good. Say no more. Try it.

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GS
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Food was delicious and the menu is fun. Lots of opportunity to try different things with small plates.

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K
1 review
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Simple menu. The shishito peppers queso are a must. Start with chips & get all 7 salsas (they’re small & not what you expect from salsa- more like sauce).

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G
Tokyo
1 review
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

メキシコ料理でハズレは珍しいが、定番のタコスやチョリソも美味しくなかった。チョリソはチーズグラタンのようになっており、思い描いていたものとは違った料理だった。マルガリータは色々な種類があり、とても美味しかった。

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GC
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Great restaurant overall. Limited selection of Mexican dishes but what they have is very good. Taco portions were more kid sizes than adult, so plan to double your order to feed your hunger.

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PM
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I really liked this place. As a displaced Californian, I’m skeptical of New York Mexican restaurants, but this did not disappoint. We had the prix fixe menu, which was great. I highly recommend this place.

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m
Los Angeles
12 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Creative, flavorful, crave-able cuisine. Cocktails were a hit as well.

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AG
Portland
5 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is a terrific place! We had dinner before going to Smalls Jazz Club right across the street. Loved everything about it!

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AE
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Fun atmosphere, good food, but, although the drinks were really delicious, they were so expensive and they had more ice than alcohol. Not classy.

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M
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

The host was absolutely amazing at accommodating our group. Made sure we were taken care of. Was really good for a large group as well.

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AO
New York Area
59 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 3

The tacos were really good. Brussel sprout tacos were a triumph as was the skirt steak. Barbacoa lacked seasoning but was super tender. The guac was tasty but not notably better / different than other places - you're better off ordering something more unique to them. Desserts were super interesting and original.

The service was good but the staff was relentlessly on us if we were done with a plate - you could really feel the pressure to turn tables. I would recommend this for a quick dinner but if you want a leisurely catch up with friends or a romantic date to get to know someone, this is not the place.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

GNO... great ambiance

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OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 4ambience 3

Made us really sick.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The best, most adventurous Mexican in nyc. Period!

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SS
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything about this restaurant is amazing! The food, the service, and the ambiance were exactly what I was looking for. Will be coming back for sure!

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LM
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome experience as always. One of my favorites. Great service! Amazing margaritas, guacamole, and salsa! Will come back time and time again!

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OT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Food was delicious, out of the ordinary Mexican - a nice change!
Our server was outstanding!

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AR
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 5ambience 3

Very expensive lunch. Bloody Mary’s were disgusting. Will not return. Service was excellent.

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A
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was fresh, flavorful and pretty much perfect.

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LL
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

The twice cooked pork is fantastic, so are the large scampi appetizers.

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