Playa Betty's

4.3
625 reviews
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$30 and under
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Californian
Playa Betty's is a road trip down the California coastline.
When we say "California-Style Beach Food" we mean the whole coast of California - from a Mendocino County food truck to Los Angeles health food to the best of Baja California!
We serve it up wholesome, fast, and with lots of love inside.
So grab some friends, throw some surfboards into your old VW microbus, take an imaginary drive down the coast –

"Cause at Playa Betty’s there’s always great food, cold drinks and summer never ends…"
What 625 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.2
service
4.1
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 4

We were served two batches of guacamole with visibly spoiled tomatoes. The waiter and manager did not apologize although they did give us a free dessert.

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G
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

Very poor service: took forever to get acknowledged at the bar. Waited for our change when we paid the bar tab- never got it. The bartender who ignored us put it in her pocket. Worse service at the table. Almost left without ordering. First time for all 3 of us. Won’t be back. The food was good but the service was miserable. Plenty of staff. No excuse. Very disappointed.

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v
New York Area
22 reviews
Dined on June 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

They have great tacos. Really enjoyed the place. At some point it got too noisy to hear. That was the only bad thing.

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R
Glasgow
1 review
Dined on June 11, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Excellent! Food good, service and atmosphere great.

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

Appreciated the Tuesday taco prices with a mixed drink special. Service was great and enjoyed a sidewalk cafe table before heading over to the Beacon Theater, right around the corner. Bar staff and patrons were friendly too as I waited for the other person to arrive. Would definitely go there again.

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LA
New York Area
20 reviews
Dined on June 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Two of us had tacos, they were excellent and to be recommended. One of us had a burrito, said to be very good. Very pleasant staff, prompt service, though atmosphere a bit loud for a Tuesday at 5:30. Would return

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SH
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I soooo loved this restaurant!!! The food, music EVERYTHING was sooo wonderful. Our server Johnny was so attentive & secure with all of our request & needs. SURELY I WILL BE BACK VERY VERY SOON -- even from Long Island ...

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SA
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 2ambience 3

This restaurant is poorly run!
They need more help and better service . By the time my extra dressing came I was done and was charged extra. The waitress was willing to take the difference out of her pocket rather then deal with the management. It wouldn’t take much to make this a good place cause the food was pretty good! Less nickle and diming people and more attention to service!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had brunch here, my friends and I were celebrating my recent job offer in LA. Ambience is very Californian and feels laid back. A nice pocket on the upper west side.

Baja fish tacos are my usual go-to here, great flavour and texture.

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k
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Brunch with my mom on a Sunday. We walked in just about right when they opened and the spot was already being bombarded. Our server was Christopher and he was fantastic even when my
Mom and I were picky about the table (didn’t wanna sit around screaming children) and sent our first round of drinks back. Jumping over dogs, maneuvering around strollers and serving up a hot and fresh meal- very impressive. He never lost his smile either , even though it got busy very quickly. Great meal, love the outside seating and bottomless mimosas are always a good idea. Perfect summer spot , always and forever.

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SA
Phoenix
6 reviews
Dined on June 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Great service tonight. The waitress was wonderful and the restaurant had a fabulous down to Earth vibe that was refreshing in this sometimes
“Stuffy” city!! Will come
Again.

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S
New York Area
26 reviews
Dined on June 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Outstanding waiter.

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DD
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

It’s loud so not a great place if you want to have a conversation but servers are friendly and food is decent for the price. They’re good at getting you out quickly if you’re catching a show at the Beacon.

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

Amazing food and excellent service!
Would highly recommend this restaurant.

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F
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 2

Food and drinks are just average, which is really disappointing because this was not the case when they first opened. The noise level was also incredibly high. It's a serviceable option before I show at the Beacon theater but beyond that, I won't be making a trip to go back anytime soon.

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RK
New Mexico
12 reviews
Dined on May 29, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 3

lively place - people were having fun - more of a scene. The noise level is extremely high. Food not genuine Mexican - Enchiladas under cooked and vegetables did not fit easily in that form. Guacamole too creamy. The chips were fine. The soda too watered down.

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p
New York Area
104 reviews
Dined on May 26, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Everyone was quite patient with us as our table of 6 arrived at different times. There were plentiful choices for those with carb free diets. Everyone seemed to enjoy their meal and I’ll definitely be back for a relaxed lunch or dinner.

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MB
1 review
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Glad we made a reservation, the place was hopping at 6:00 PM. We even arrived about 10 minutes early and they seated us right away. The food was very good, we especially appreciated the vegetarian options. The drinks were good, but small with too much ice. The servers were friendly and efficient. I would definitely go back.

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OT
1 review
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Food was amazing. Atmosphere was fun and energetic. Lots of families with children.

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R
1 review
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The servers are all efficient and friendly, the tacos are delicious (seriously! Have the short rib... it’s life changing!) and the drinks are perfect - strong enough but not frat-party-blitzing. It was a little loud for two old ladies like us, but everything else was a 10!

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DC
Edinburgh
1 review
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 5

Good guacamole, slow service

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 21, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

It’s really a great buzzing place. Great energy and there’s a comedy club downstairs!! The frozen Paloma and buffalo cauliflower are my favs!!

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AZ
1 review
Dined on May 19, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 5

The food is just nothing special to write about. Nothing comes out hot. It’s all fairly mediocre.

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DB
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on May 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great spot for casual food and drinks. My favorites are the guac, chips and Buffalo Cauliflower. And if you like spicy, I recommend the Tanteo Jalepeno tequila!

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D
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

casual dining, good food and fun, lively atmosphere !!

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CH
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, great venue and the perfect place for my farewell NYC brunch with friends! I will miss Playa Betty’s!!

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n
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Great value for the money. Loved the house margaritas and tried 3 different tacos with DELICIOUS pinto beans and rice on the side. Next time will try the enchiladas. Oh yes, the dessert of ice cream sandwiches made with crispy churros is a must! One was fine for 2 to share.

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JE
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on May 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere and service. The queso dip was delicious and margaritas are just what you need!

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

The queso dip was fantastic and our tacos were delicious and came out quickly. We ordered bottomless mimosas and were happy with how quickly and frequently our waiter came to refill our glasses. Definitely felt like we got our money’s worth. Will come back again!

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 10, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 5

Good, but overpriced.

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r
New York Area
17 reviews
Dined on May 7, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

Playa Betty’s is a fun place to drink margaritas with a big group on the Upper West Side. I went to Playa Betty’s for Taco Tuesday and it was a great experience from atmosphere to food and drinks. They don’t offer Happy Hour Menu on Taco Tuesday but if you buy a drink Tacos are $3 each + $8 frozen palomas

It is surprisingly large (especially for NYC!) with high ceilings and fake palm trees, surf boards…really makes you feel like you are in Southern California =]

Drinks:
*Frozen Paloma: traditional frozen margarita with grapefruit flavor (very yummy!)
*Cool as a cucumber: very fresh a good choice for summer
*Oaxaca Mule: good but might be too sweet for some, not sure if is the Fever Tree Ginger Beer that adds the extra sweetness. I have never tried fever tree ginger beer before which is sweeter and not as spicy as regular ginger beer

Food
*Tacos (they are small so we tried a few): we tried carne asada, short rib, rock ‘n roll shrimp, the markey and al pastor (short rib and the rock ‘n roll shrimp were probably the best of all). Definitely not the best tacos I’ve ever eaten nor the best in NYC but worth a try (and especially on Tuesday for $3)
*Mexican Grilled Corn - a must order not too spicy as Jamaican corn but enough flavor to make you want more
*“Tot” Chos: a “classic” nachos made with tater tots also very good
*Queso (dip with chips): good appetizer and a generous size perfect for sharing
*Venice beach fries: fries with a “spicy twist” also good for sharing

Dessert:
*Churro Ice Cream Sandwich: DELICIOUS! I will definitely go back there just for this deliciousness in form of a dessert. I don’t have sweet tooth but the combo of sweet churros with creamy ice cream is just perfect!

We were there at the busiest time (around 7pm) and service gets a bit chaotic at times but food will definitely make up for it. Like a said is a fun place to catch up with friends over some drinks but if you are looking for a more intimate (quiet) place this is probably not for

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UW
Charleston
9 reviews
Dined on May 7, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

I love Playa Betty’s but have to note 3 things:
1. The food is excellent & priced extremely fairly (pro)
2. The service is extremely hit or miss. I’ve have a few really great servers and 2 pretty bad ones so just be prepared to advocate for yourself if you need more water, chips, etc.
3. Be sure when you get there that they actually do mark you as present for your reservation. (As part of the service being hit or miss, sometimes the hosts are absent minded too!) I was marked a no show the other night and got a follow up email from opentable (while still at the restaurant!) asking why I no-showed. It’s just annoying — if I check in telling you my name and reservation time, please check me off your list, so I don’t have to jump through extra hoops like emailing open table. Overall, good place, I’ll still keep coming here, I just have to adjust to not knowing what the service will be like!

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MS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is one of my absolute favorite places! Always a good time and fabulous food!

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PT
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Cinco De Mayo was fun. We had a RSVP. Fun environment. Food was good. Staff friendly. Next time we go, we are gonna sit at the bar or outside.

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L
London
3 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

We had booked a table for 5 people. Two of our party arrived a little late and the front of house did not want to seat us until the whole party arrived. I’m not a fan of this policy, but fair enough. Problem was that it was raining pretty heavily outside and there was nowhere to stand and wait for our table without feeling in the way of the waiting staff. So we just had an awkward 5 minutes of constantly shifting ourselves around to make way for people. When our full party arrived, it transpired that they did not have a table for our size group. They tried to accommodate us at a high table that would have been a squeeze for 4 people. The front of house staff were quite rude when we explained that we had booked a table for 5 and expected to have a table that was the right size, and acted like we were asking for something extraordinary, with no apologies or anything. Eventually, they dragged out an extra round high table to awkwardly put next to the table that was too small. It was just uncomfortable.

There are lots of great places for brunch in this area so next time I will go somewhere that can cope with the basic requirement of fulfilling bookings with tables of the appropriate size. Or at least being at least slightly apologetic when they mess up...

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SS
New York Area
30 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 2

Tables are very small and close together. Noise level was very loud --people talking all over plus music piped in. Food was okay--the Dharma bowl with steak was fair. The guacamole appetizer was "make it yourself". The waiter brings the creamy, well-mashed avacado with 6 little cups of add-ins: onions, tomatoes, other spicy items so we could make it to our liking. My husband had the salmon entree which he said was good.
Guests in their 20's or 30's would say the place was "lively" but I am older and found the noise level way too loud and couldn't enjoy my meal.

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d
New York Area
22 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Food was quite good - moreso than I expected. We were there on a very busy Saturday night - Derby and Cinco de Mayo (next day). I don’t understand why outside seating is first come first served even with a reservation - that needs to change. My only other complaint is that the food across the board - burrito, guacamole, etc - is all extremely underseasoned. Not sure if that’s because of prior complaints or something, but we had to put quite a bit of salt in our guac, and on our main dishes. That could be improved. Otherwise, great margs, food is otherwise solid and great energy.

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b
New York Area
46 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 1

Good food and service but sooooo loud! Could not hear my lunch buddies!!!

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

My daughter’s birthday. The waiter was so impatient and rude. “I am in a hurry. I have to go now.” This is while taking our orders. And everything I said, he looked like he was barely containing his impatience. Grimacing. Really stressful and upsetting. And then he didn’t even bring everything we ordered. I could only order from him if I yelled as he sped by. So rude and unpleasant. Made it hard to enjoy the special occasion.

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LW
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

fun place went early for a quick bite before a show at the Beacon. Food was very good, loved the mexican corn. Service was very attentive, fills up on a Friday night for sure. We had the wings, mexican corn, I had a fish taco & my husband had a pork dish. all very good. Prices very reasonable. We did get a rush service with main course coming out before we were done with appetizers and we werent lingerering over the food but otherwise it was all very good.

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