The Black Ant

4.2
icon/ic_reviewCreated with Sketch.
468 Reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$30 and under
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Mexican
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.
What 468 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.1
service
4.1
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
76% of people would recommend it to a friend
Sort by
Filters
SF
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on January 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Even better than the last time we visited (which had been awhile). Cocktails were solid, dishes were excellent. Stand outs were the ceviche and fish tacos.

CB
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Took advantage of the antmazing happy hour, which runs every day from 4 - 7 PM. We had the smoky jalapeño margaritas, which we amazing! We also tried the fish tacos, the carnitas tacos, and the quesadillas. Everything was great and during midweek the place is nice and chill. It can get busy on Friday night and over the weekend. We were very satisfied with the service, food was great, and will keep coming back again. Highly recommend!

SL
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Waited 20 min and noone came to ask for our order or drinks. Left before anyone came and asked for an order

AK
New York Area
49 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our favorite Mexican food in the East Village. Great drinks and happy hour!

D
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience2

We had a nice meal at the Black Ant. Drinks were excellent food great, ambiance not so much. Very noisy, tables for two very crammed in. All in all a decent dining experience. Would go back again.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 24, 2019
Overall2food2service4ambience1

Very mediocre food - and it was soft...I know that sounds strange but it was just a soft mess. With all of the great Mexican in NY - I would suggest skipping this one...sadly, I’d go to Chipotle before I go back.

T
1 review
Dined on December 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

one of my favorite restaurants! no matter how busy they are, the service is always attentive, and the staff is very friendly. food is delicious, and happy hour is the best!

SL
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Creative, resourceful and delicious - highly recommend the Black Ant for adventurous eaters. Drinks are delicious!

OT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great service, amazing margaritas

L
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2019
Overall3food4service2ambience3

I might recommend the restaurant--and I'd consider going back--for the food, which was unusual and by and large very good. My boyfriend and I thought the conejo enchiladas were delicious, and our friends liked the pork tacos and the plantains a lot (and the steak, though they found it overpriced). (My least favorite dish was the corn and crab soup, which I found bland and overpriced.)

One big caveat--we waited an hour plus for our food--with no communication from our waiter. We needed to leave by 10:15 for a show in the neighborhood, and had allowed plenty of time for a leisurely dinner. Desperate for something to eat, we eventually ordered chips (the trio of salsas were good) then sought out the manager, who was apologetic, and offered extra drinks. (The two guys in our party accepted, but I had no desire for extra alcohol on an empty stomach.) We wolfed down our food when it finally arrived, and were shocked to see that our waiter hadn't comped the desperation-order chips. One of us complained about that to the manager ,who agreed that we shouldn't have been charged.

My recommendation: don't go when you want to eat soon or need to be somewhere afterwards. Inquire about whether the kitchen is slow that night. Consider waiting to order drinks till after your food order has been placed.

Also, check their health rating--it was Grade Pending when we ate there

ED
Miami
2 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2019
Overall3food4service1ambience1

The service was just weird. Our waiter never came up to us, we had to hail him over ourselves. We didn't even know which person was our waiter, since 3 different people came up to us, so we didn't know the right person to hail down. It was just an overall weird vibe/interaction with the staff (e.g. they didn't take our menus away after we ordered, we had a party of 5 and they brought 6 water glasses, but only 4 margarita glasses for our pitcher, etc). We also had 5 people sitting at a 4 person table with a party of 5 sitting at a 4 person table right next to us. It was very close quarters and very uncomfortable since we were all on top of each other / it was hard to get in and out of the table to go to the bathroom. It was not a pleasant fit to fit 3 people on 1 side of the table we were sitting at.

MC
1 review
Dined on December 14, 2019
Overall2food4service2ambience3

We arrived hoping for a good meal. What we received was appetizers The web site said they open at 4 however they did not open until 5. The place was very noisy. Our food did not even come out together. The food was really good I would never go back or recommend this place.

m
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Unusual and fresh Mexican food at a very good price--especially during Happy Hour!

d
Charleston
19 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I went there for my birthday. It was an amazing experience from the time we walked in to the time we left. The hostess gave us the warmest welcome. She Literally felt like family. Food was fantastic! Thank you for making us feel so welcomed and making my birthday fantastic!

OT
Chicago
19 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2019
Overall3food2service3ambience3

Over priced and not vegetarian friendly.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 8, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great night out with friends at this trendy spot. You get over the random inclusion of insects into your meal rather quickly. Everything was tasty!

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 4, 2019
Overall1food2service2ambience1

Awkwardly empty and overpriced food that was very greasy and lukewarm. Disappointing.

JH
Houston
11 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Nice place. Good food, not amazing. Drinks are good. Great mezcal

D
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience1

my daughter and i were seated on time~~~only 4 tables occupied for sunday brunch????
so bottomless 90 min brunch 25$ good deal, menu read great~~~~so, my daughter is alergic to the mezcal plant, so we simply asked for a bloody mary for her instead ,i opted for bloody maria, the server comes back empty handed? i asked why, he says the bartender said , were out of bar vodka, so we have to charge you $13 for @ drink she has for premium vodka, i said thats not our fault that your out of some cheap vodka!!!, and what bar in the world only would have 2????
he said sorry, im onle a server, its the bartenders call, we got up and left, passing by the bartender i said you should learn a little more on treating your customers, and hospitality!
so we took a chance , walked 4 blocks to PRUNE, 1 of the best restarants in soho, they dont take rezon the weekend, the palce is small and full, the hostess said have a seat outside , well have a table for you in 5 mins~~~~~~was a great brunch , read about PRUNE, 20 yrs in biz!~ never going back to THE BLACK ANT! would you!~

CD
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Fun, upbeat vibe. Really enjoyed the guacamole with chapulines on the side. The fish tacos were very good as well.

C
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall2food1service2ambience2

Food sub-par and they were out of mimosas during brunch so we had to do bottomless margaritas... only plus was that drinks were good.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing experience for our honeymoon! They even were nice enough to bring a honeymoon flan. 10/10 service and food

CB
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Really great experience again at the Black Ant. They have a really great happy hour with discounted drinks and appetizers. The chicken quesadilla, the fish tacos, the carnitas, and the margaritas are amazing. Their food is really good quality and the ambience is great.

m
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Went to Black Ant for my birthday and had the best time. Thank you!

D
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The back patio is really nice. Hey he inside is a bit dark. Overall a great spot

e
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Happy hour is amazing here!!

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall2food2service3ambience2

The margarita was from a mix. No restaurant in CDMX uses a premade mix for margaritas.

KJ
1 review
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall3food4service5ambience3

The food was great but small portions. If you are hungry eat a little before you go. Very disappointed because I looked at the menu before making a reservation, and I was looking forward to their bone marrow only to find out they weren’t serving it.

GS
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

This was such a special place to visit. The staff were incredible friendly and seemed genuinely interested in the food they were selling. I ordered the croquet with crickets and was blown away with how delicious it was!! I also ordered the black and guacamole and rabbit enchiladas and it was all so delicious. I would recommend this place for a special and unique outing!

JQ
1 review
Dined on July 26, 2019
Overall2food2service3ambience1

The food was simply not palatable. The blue corn tortilla chips were flavorless as was the guacamole. The chicken dish on broccoli rabe was flavorless as well. The tacos were sub par. I paid $15 for an alcohol free drink!

C
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I love it here!! I’ve been many times and am never disappointed.

IK
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We came here for brunch. The service was good, staff was very friendly! The burger is Amazing!!! Highly recommend it and also the Watermelon Margarita - both are spectacular. The duck confit burrito was good but didn’t blow me away. Overall a great place with a good vibe and tasty food, we would definitely come here again.

RI
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall3food4service3ambience3

Food was very good however not a great selection for brunch.

A
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Such a cool, fun restaurant. Their margarita pitchers are absolutely incredible and are well worth it.

B
1 review
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall3food3service1ambience5

Would recommend this only because it’s different (i.e grasshoppers).

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on June 12, 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience1

The food was not fresh.
The cod smelled bad. Had to return it. They charged us for everything
Never going back again

RR
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on June 6, 2019
Overall3food1service4ambience4

I have been here many times and the food, drinks and service have been spot on. But this last visit, (Thurs, June 6, 2019) the food was lackluster. It didn't look appetizing, starting with the guacamole and chips; and I did not eat my entree (pork tacos). They looked sad, blah and un-edible! I took a couple of bites and took the rest of my entree home, which I ended up throwing out the next morning. Sorry Black Ant. I probably won't return.

OT
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall1food5service1ambience5

Fantastic food, terrible service!! Our waitress completely forgot my entree. My boyfriend ate by himself since she told us preparing the entree would take awhile. After this, we asked for a check. Nothing was compensated for this error. We asked to speak to the manager which they told us would be awhile since the manager was in a meeting. They then compensated us for guacamole and vegetables. Save yourself the trip and just order from Seamless!

BA
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Highly recommend the Brunch at Black Ant..........the limited menu is delicious and the drinks are flowing.
love the service and the atmosphere.

AJ
Dallas
3 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience3

As a New Yorker who grew up in Texas and has traveled to Mexico City (and loved the food), I thought the food at this spot was inventive and delicious. The grasshopper appetizer was particularly good. My husband loved the duck dumplings with mole. The octopus itself was fabulous, but the sides on that dish need more refinement. We also loved the pork tacos. The tortillas were very authentic. Great mezcal margarita. The music was a bit loud.