The Black Ant

4.4
337 reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$30 and under
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Mexican
Top Tags:
  • Good for a Date
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fun
In ancient Mexico, when Quetzalcoatl transformed into The Black Ant and journeyed into the mountain, he found corn and seeds and gave these to man. This generous gesture created the essence of Mexican cuisine. Now The Black Ant offers an invitation to you to forget what you know and come with him, to his Mexico, to his New York City… to his heart.

Jorge Guzman and Chef Mario Hernandez bring you, The Black Ant. A modern Mexican restaurant focusing on the traditional and uniquely sourced ingredients of Mexico in a contemporary, “Cocina de Autor” in Manhattan’s East Village. Chef Hernandez shares his vision of Contemporary Latin Cuisine, harmoniously paired with Jorge’s innovative handcrafted cocktails and together with their partner Cliff Fried; they bring you their passion and love and look forward to having you.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Cuisines
Mexican
icon/ic_clockCreated with Sketch.
Hours of operation
Saturday & Sunday Brunch - 11-4pm.
Monday- Wednesday Dinner 4pm - 12.
Thursday - Saturday Dinner 4pm-1am.
Sunday Dinner 4pm- 12.
icon/ic_phoneCreated with Sketch.
Phone number
(212) 598-0300
icon/ic_new_windowCreated with Sketch.
icon/ic_paymentCreated with Sketch.
Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
icon/ic_dress_codeCreated with Sketch.
Dress code
Casual Dress
icon/ic_chefCreated with Sketch.
Executive chef
Chef Mario Hernandez
icon/ic_cateringCreated with Sketch.
Catering
We offer a full range of catering options:
Buffet stations, prix fixe menus, family style menus, passed hors d'ouvres, etc.
For Large Party Reservations, please call at the restaurant 212 598 0300
icon/ic_locationCreated with Sketch.
icon/ic_neighborhoodCreated with Sketch.
Neighborhood
icon/ic_cross_streetCreated with Sketch.
Cross street
Between 3rd & 4th St
icon/ic_public_transitCreated with Sketch.
Public transit
Take the F train to Second Ave.
icon/ic_entertainmentCreated with Sketch.
Entertainment
On special occasions, mariachis present to heighten the festive atmosphere.
Please contact the restaurant directly with questions.
Additional
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch

What Insiders Are Saying

The Infatuation
8.1

An excellent Mexican restaurant in the East Village that might serve you some of the most inventive plates you’ve seen in awhile.

Ratings 8.0-8.5:The best way to think about restaurants in the low to mid 8′s is that these are the places you would absolutely go back to, anytime. These restaurants are ones that you want to bring a friend to, just so they can also experience the duck carnitas, or burger, or whatever dish the place is known for.
Reviews from verified diners
337 reviews
4.4 out of 5 Stars
Outstanding
57%
Very Good
29%
Good
10%
Fair
2%
Poor
2%
4.3
food
4.3
service
4.2
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
87% of people would recommend it to a friend
Sort by
Newest
Filters
OT
New York Area
1 review
3.0Dined on June 30, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 3

They did not mention that full bodied ants would be the centerpiece of every item of the menu

Report
Helpful
C
New York Area
8 reviews
4.0Dined on June 29, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Great spot. The guac was fresh and a bit different that other spots. Tacos and drinks were also solid. It was a bit pricey, but a good change of pace.

Report
Helpful
CE
San Francisco
1 review
5.0Dined on June 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great tequila and mezcal cocktails. Delicious food. Friendly and fast service. Loved the al pastor tacos. At first I thought I'd miss the meat, as these tacos don't have the pork that pastor tacos typically have, but they were fantastic. The grilled pineapple preparation was delicious. I would definitely go back.

Report
Helpful
DB
New York Area
7 reviews
5.0Dined on June 28, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

They have an enclosed back garden area that is really different vibes from the interior. Both very cool, but change the ambiance of the meal. Food is delicious - watch out for the actual black ant salt and other dishes with insects if that’s not your thing! Love the margaritas as well

Report
Helpful
EV
New York Area
38 reviews
3.0Dined on June 23, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Food was so-so. The duck dumpling was dry and the flavor of the duck was overwhelmed by the mole sauce. Waitress was efficient; hostess was more interested in talking to her friends than hosting.

Report
Helpful
NC
New York Area
20 reviews
5.0Dined on June 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Went for happy hour and enjoyed the fish tacos, ceviche tostada, guacamole, and quesadillas. Food looked beautiful and tasted great. Sat in the covered back patio, which was bright and pleasant. Would return.

Report
Helpful
LB
1 review
4.0Dined on June 20, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Great spot! Met friends for happy hour and then ate dinner, everything was good.

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
1 review
5.0Dined on June 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

BEST HAPPY HOUR. From 5-7 basically everything is half price and the same delicious food!

$7 Margs

$7 Guacamole, Tacos (2 in 1 order - GET THE FISH), chicken quesadilla (INCREDIBLE), Ceviche, and more.

Go Go Go! Very accommodating with reservations and food comes out really quick. For the REALLY hot summer days they have a covered back patio with AC.

Report
Helpful
W
New York Area
1 review
4.0Dined on June 15, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

Some of the best (and most expensive!) guacamole I’ve ever had in NYC. Food was delicious but our drinks didn’t come until after the entrees. Overall, delicious but a bit pricey and slow.

Report
Helpful
MG
1 review
5.0Dined on June 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great food, Great cocktails, definitely coming here again! Already been here 3 times and have brought multiple people and they were just as impressed.

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
1 review
3.0Dined on June 9, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 4

It seemed that we were forgotten by a lot especially for not being very busy inside.

Report
Helpful
DA
New York Area
19 reviews
4.0Dined on June 8, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

We were in for the weekend and staying around the corner. Enjoyed everything we ordered - from the guacamole and quesadillas, to the black cod and octopus. Margaritas were also really delicious.

Report
Helpful
AV
New York Area
2 reviews
5.0Dined on June 1, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

This place was super cute and a great find! We sat outside in their indoor/outdoor space which has lovely lighting and a great decor. The food wasn't super filling but it was unique and tasty and the drinks were good as well. Overall I would definitely come back here.

Report
Helpful
YT
New York Area
5 reviews
5.0Dined on May 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really really good happy hour menu and amazingly tasty tacos.

Report
Helpful
K
New York Area
1 review
3.0Dined on May 19, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Food was great but too noisy

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
8 reviews
4.0Dined on May 17, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Interesting take on Mexican food. Very nice service and good food.

Report
Helpful
DG
New York Area
4 reviews
4.0Dined on May 16, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

My friends and I had a great time at happy hour and dinner here. Great ambiance, terrific margaritas (definitely get their smoky jalepeno version with black ant salt), unique and tasty food, and personal service. The host and bartender were both super attentive and even gave us free drinks! I will definitely be back, hopefully for their boozy brunch.

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
3.0Dined on May 4, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

I came to this place about 2 years ago and the food was amazing I came back last week and the value of the food was ok

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
3.0Dined on April 28, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 4

The unlimited brunch was great - they never let our drinks go empty. However the service was poor and the food was minimal given the price points. All we have to say about this place is eh.

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
5.0Dined on April 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went for brunch. The food was great and the $25 bottomless brunch drinks were completely worth every penny.
Had a young vibe and by 2pm the whole place was completely full
Will recommend to friends and go back myself

Report
Helpful
SJ
New York Area
1 review
5.0Dined on April 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Innovative tacos, strong margaritas. Great stylish ambiance and solid service. Go for the happy hour specials ($7 margs and snacks) and stay for the grasshopper crusted shrimp tacos and the rabbit enchiladas.

Report
Helpful
BL
New York Area
12 reviews
4.0Dined on April 1, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Easter brunch with the family And the food was amazing and the people who work there too I will definitely will return

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
5.0Dined on March 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Birthday , server was great and had a fun time!

Report
Helpful
M
New York Area
30 reviews
5.0Dined on March 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I heard that The Black Ant had great margaritas and my recommendation was correct! My friend and I loved the smoky jalapeno margarita. It was delicious. We both ordered the fish tacos and thought they were great. I'd love to come next time and experiment with more of the other options on the menu.

Report
Helpful
NT
New York Area
1 review
4.0Dined on March 25, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We had a double date brunch at The Black Ant. We had a really great time! The bottomless drinks were great, they just kept filling our glasses. My meal wasn't the best; however, I cannot eat dairy, so my dish was modified and I'm sure it would be much different if the cheese and sour cream were apart of it. That being said, everyone else really liked their food. I would like to go back at night to try the tapas, the menu seems very different. Would definitely recommend for a fun boozy brunch!

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
5.0Dined on March 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The food and drinks were great! Loved trying something new and different!

Report
Helpful
S
New York Area
21 reviews
3.0Dined on March 24, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

The food was good- very authentic mexican. However, we did feel a bit rushed.

Report
Helpful
RP
1 review
5.0Dined on March 22, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

We where visiting NYC and where looking for a good Mexican restaurant. We found it :-)

Report
Helpful
CT
New York Area
1 review
5.0Dined on March 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Birthday was great!

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
4.0Dined on March 18, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 5

The bass is really good.

Report
Helpful
H
New York Area
2 reviews
2.0Dined on March 18, 2018
Overall 2food 5service 1ambience 3

We went to The Black Ant on Saturday evening for dinner. The ambiance was simple yet creative. Ant painting, photographs, and in the tiles. The hostess was very welcoming when we walked in but was confused on where she was seating us and it was an awkward few minutes of following her around until she found a table. The table was out in their patio area. She set 5 of us at a 4 person table. It was uncomfortable and when asked to move, she said that is all she had. Our waitress took around 5-8 minutes to greet us and bring us water and the menus. She was very unfriendly; did not say welcome or even crack a smile. She came off as very cold and it wasn't a very welcoming feeling. After being given the food and drink menus, she didn't come back for another 10 minutes (mind you, it was not that busy at all. It was 7:30pm and maybe half the restaurant was full, at best). When she came back, we ordered our drinks, appetizers, and food. 20 minutes later, all three came at the same time. It was such an odd experience. Luckily, the food was delicious and full of amazing flavor. The service was terrible and very slow. The food I got at The Black Ant, while delicious, is food I can get at another restaurant in NYC and probably have better service. I will not be returning but if you do not care about slow and unfriendly service, I would go there for the food and margaritas.

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
1 review
4.0Dined on March 10, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 1ambience 4

Enjoyed the place - server was rude

Report
Helpful
DH
1 review
3.0Dined on March 4, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

I like being generous with restaurants in that it’s okay if they make a mistake or two, but unfortunately there were many this evening. I’ll start with positives, the place looks cool and has a decent vibe and apparently a gorgeous back area. Negatives: the hostess was sweet, but terrible. My friend and I had reservations and weren’t seated for another 30 minutes and just awkwardly handled, brought back once and the table wasn’t clean and when it was the busser didn’t believe us to be the party to be seated. Plus there’s no great waiting area and people entering kept hitting my friend and I through the black curtain at the entrance. Menu! I used to be in hospitality and am now a graphic designer; the little ants crawling on the menu do make sense with the concept, but still off-putting when you’re hungry and looking directly at them next to menu descriptions. The food itself was mostly good at decent price points, but the ceviche was hilariously bad; I think it’s the third dish I’ve ever returned to a kitchen and I dine out several times a week. The waiter was pleasant, seemed very busy, but fine. Our food arrived before our two seltzer waters, but otherwise okay. More than anything it just seems like a new restaurant conceived by interior designers rather than hospitality types... which is a bad fit, especially in NYC.

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
2 reviews
4.0Dined on February 25, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Very nice waiter

Report
Helpful
JM
New York Area
1 review
3.0Dined on February 25, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 4

The service was really bad when we went. It took ten minutes for someone to take our order. Our food came out well before the drinks (which took more than 20 minutes - one of the drinks was a beer). The wrong dish came out and the check took a while to come. The food was good but I wouldn't necessarily come back given the service.

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
1 review
2.0Dined on February 23, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 3

Not celiac/gluten free friendly - had to order and entree three times for them to get it right

Report
Helpful
C
1 review
5.0Dined on February 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I went here with my friend for brunch on a Sunday, and it was amazing! I don't know if they're new or just the East Village's best kept secret, but I am so excited I found this spot and can't wait to go back. The Smoky Jalapeno Margarita is a must-try!

Report
Helpful
k
New York Area
25 reviews
5.0Dined on February 18, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Great margaritas and excellent food. Get the bottomless for brunch, roasted grasshopper guac and duck rancheros.

Report
Helpful
NM
1 review
3.0Dined on February 15, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

$16 for a taco. A single taco. And not even a very good one. Sorry but even for NYC prices, that's a bit ridiculous.

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
1 review
5.0Dined on February 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Delicious food, cool atmosphere

Report
Helpful
1
2
3
9