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Nuevo Leon Restaurant

Map & Directions
(40 Reviews)

1515 W 18th St, Chicago, IL 60608

(312) 421-1517

Today: 7:00 am - 11:30 pm
Tomorrow: 7:00 am - 11:30 pm
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Regular Hours
Mon - Sun:
Payment method
cash only
Price Range
West Side, Pilsen

Restaurante Nuevo Leon

Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch Restaurants, Bar & Grills, Caterers, Family Style Restaurants, Mexican Restaurants, Restaurants
Other Information

Cuisines: Caterers, Family Style, Mexican, Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch, Latin American, Bar & Grills

Price Range : Below Average


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Provided by Citysearch - 
Never Again!

I am always amazed that Nuevo Leon has such a strong following. As a lifelong Mexican Food aficionado, IMHO the food at NL is not just bad, it is horrible. There are no redeeming qualities to this restaurant. I believe that it is successful because many are unfamiliar with real mexican food and/or have such low expectations of mexican restaurants. Every couple of years, I am compelled to give Nuevo Leon another try because so many folks rave about the place. Yet, on my last visit, a bland tasteless salsa was brought out (we even witnessed salsa, after a customer left, being put back by the waiter into a large bowl, only to be scooped up again to be served anew; yuck!), the chips were soggy, greasy and tasteless, and there was an energizer battery in the soup (yes, this happened to us!). No apologies for having a lithium battery in the soup. The only explanation was that the cooks “are a playful bunch” and “like to prank each other.” It is a wholly unsannitary and tasteless experience. There is no charm to roaches, rats, spotty service, tasteless food, unsanittary conditions and, on top of that, long lines. Never again!



Provided by Citysearch - 
Real Authentic Mexican Food

Great food, great staff, what else can anybody ask for? Their carne asada is delicious, served the with their homemade flour tortillas that no other mexican restaurant in the city top! It's being at home... Yes, it's crowded, but that's only because everyone craves their great tasting dishes. Did I mention their free appetizers? Yes! Free! OMG!! Not only are they free, they are authentic mexican appetizers! Overall, great atmosphere, friendly staff (except the owner) and great food!!! Highly Recommend!



Provided by Citysearch - 
stressful-not worth the trip

I'm Mexican, from LA, and from my first visit (I had the Carne Asada plate, 6 nachos, Carne Asada Burrito) I can recommend this place for pick-up only and if you order at least 30 min in advance. The food is comparable to Uncle Julio's (Lincoln Park) and I would rather pay the same price for what I felt what was the same quality of food (both like El Torito in Calif.) and go to Uncle Julio's. Nuevo is way too crowded (like Uncle Julio's) but about 1/4 the size of UJ and Nuevo has no parking besides a little lot around the corner which looked hard to get in and out of, so I opted for take out.

I ordered take out at the counter (which I felt like I was in the way of everyone else eating because there is no waiting/ordering area) and was told it would be ready in 20 min. Well I left and came back in 20, and still had to wait 10 min. Someone came in while I was waiting and said she placed a phone order for pickup and she was still waiting after I got my food. So for take out, order, wait 30-40min then pick up your food and it might be ready.

Also, I wasn't greeted by the Manager who I paid. He didn't smile at all, and say Thank You after I paid- very ungrateful for my business I guess.

The place was crowded so I guess some people know how to park around there or put up with the crowded tiny environment....just not my style.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Good place, good food,

This place have what the best flour tortillas in town (hand made) the carne asada is awsome and there is no place in chicago that serves better menudo. too bad I can't visit this place on a sunday morning due to parking and place packed on sundays



Provided by Citysearch - 
Best AUTHENTIC Mexican food anywhere, Can't beat the price, High quality food!!!!!!

If your looking for a place where you know the food is prepared with Love this is it! It's the kind of place that brings you back to the times when Abuela called you in for lunch. There is never a time where the food is not freshly made. The tortillas de harina will keep you coming back for more, definitely homemade!!!mmmmm. Their hot choclate on a cool night will surely bring you warmth and comfort. This is not the place for those who are more impressed by high end decor, or upscaled places. This place is for those who want the REAL DEAL! It is not only a treasure in Pilsen, but our prize here in all of Chicago. You don't know Mexican if you don't know Nuevo Leon... Highly recommended for those who want to experience the taste of real mexican food at can't beat prices.. I personally know the owner and can vouche he puts his heart and soul into this place.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Great food in the heart of pilson

We visited on the day of the Mexican Independance parade. The food was outstanding and the service was quick and friendly. The chips and salsa were great. The food came very fast. The place was filled with families have a great Sunday afternoon meal. The decor is what you would expect, Everthing was very clean and inviting.



Provided by Citysearch - 
bad service

Lazy rude service, we had it catered twice and both times the staff and person at the register were rude, food was not ready as promise had to wait 40 min from the time we arrived to pick it up. As for the food NOT GREAT but GOOD. For me it's over rated I lived in the area for over 20years and have yet to see anything special about this place compared to others in the area.....

For those that would like to compare try: La Majada Restaurant in Oak Park, any of the Lalo's resturants, La Quinta Restaurant & Bar in Berwyn........... salsa made at your table ; )



Provided by Citysearch - 
Chicago Native

I am a Chicago native... we moved away from Chicago when I was just a young girl. When I go back to Chicago... I HAVE TO EAT AT NUEVOS!!!! I am planning a trip with some of my family to Chicago in April... we heard about this 'alleged' incident in November 2007. This will NOT detour us from coming to dine at Nuevos while we visit Chicago in April!



Provided by Citysearch - 
The honest truth

There were some allegations sent out on January 8,2008 via e-mail regarding food catered by Nuevo Leon Restaurant.
Nuevo Leon Restaurant is a well respected family business located at 1515 w. 18Th Street.
It has been in business for over forty- six years(1962).Over the years,the restaurant has served,and maintained thousands of satisfied customers,many of them have been coming to the restaurant for years and some of them come on daily basis.Our employees are also exceptional.
Nuevo Leon Restaurant was accused of catering contaminated food for twenty-five people
on November 17,2007 from which fourteen people supposedly got sick .There were
never any samples taken or any reports from doctors or hospitals of anyone being admitted for bad food from such event. Our restaurant was
never closed for business for this allegation.
On November 17,2007 we had other catering orders with the exact type of food and no one came back with a complaint. Our food is cooked daily from fresh products and ingredients.
We always strive to do our best, but as we all know, in any type of business where you have to deal with thousands of people, there is always the possibility of a costumer not being satisfied for one reason or another. Sorry for any inconvenience.
Thank you for your support.
The Gutierrez Family and Staff.



Provided by Citysearch - 
great customer service

LOVE this place! Great mexican food! Everytime I go I don't know what to order but I always get the BEEF STEW.



Provided by Citysearch - 
authentic and delicious

since moving away from chicago i've come to realize how lucky i was living in such close proximity to so many wonderful mexican restaurants--neuvo leon is one of the best. it's informal and authentic. i am not sure what a previous reviewer meant when he/she wrote that it was in ""one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in chicago"", but that's a completely ridiculous thing to say, there's nothing dangerous about pilsen.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Great for breakfast...

I love dropping in here for a terrific (and cheap) breakfast, especially on the way to a Sox game. The price is right, parking is always available before noon and you'll be filled up for the rest of the day. The coffee isn't the best, but everything else is flat-out great.



Provided by Citysearch - 
First Mexican Restuarant in Chicagoland since the 50s

Simply the best of the best in mexican cooking. Forget Lalo's. For the person that said ""BETTER OFF AT TACO BELL"" says how much you know about good mexican food. They have a parking lot 1/2 a blk east. I recomed either the classic ""carne asada"" or ""Fajita"" for spicey go with ""bistec al la Mexicana""

Wish I lived closer so I could make more visits.

Tip: If you go on a week end or during luch, it can get crowded. Phone your order ahead of time.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Your better off at Taco Bell

The food is very good, but the service you get cannot even be called service (more like disservice). The wait staff has a hard time understanding simple things like 'no onions' or 'sour cream on the side'. The music is way too loud in here and if you are unfortunate enough to get seated on the kitchen side of the restaurant when someone plays the jukebox, good luck trying to have a conversation. If you do go to eat here, avoid going into the despicable bathroom at all costs! It is COMPLETELY filthy and smells moldy. I have a hard time believing it is even up to code. This makes me wonder about the cleanliness of their kitchen. The carry out service is no better. My husband loves the homemade flour tortillas with tacos, so I decided to phone an order in and pick it up. They told me it would be ready in 5 to 10 minutes. I got there in 15, waited another 10 minutes before they realized my order was not put in, waited an additional 20 minutes before I asked how much longer (I would think it can?t take too long to put pre-cooked steak taco meat on some tortillas and throw some lettuce and tomatoes on it). They assured me it was coming out right now. I had to wait 10 more minutes before I received my order that was required to be paid for as soon as I walked in (which was also higher priced than if you were to sit there and eat). So in short I waited 55 minutes for overpriced steak tacos that should have been ready in 10. I'm not saying Taco Bell is good Mexican food, but at least they understand simple things like 'no tomatoes' and you get your order promptly. There are plenty of other great authentic Mexican restaurants that know how to treat their customers and clean their bathrooms.



Provided by Citysearch - 

I don't see why people love this place so much. The food was greasy, the ambiance doesn't exist and it's in one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in Chicago. I was expecting it to be the Taj Mahal of Mexican cuisine and it wasn't even close.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Best Mexican Food Ever

As a Southern California native, I have eaten plenty of great Mexican food in my life, but nothing tops Nuevo Leon. Even when my boyfriend and I were living in the Northern suburbs, we used to take 90 minute train rides to dine at this place on a regular basis. It is worth the trip.

The atmosphere is fun and friendly and if you are a regular customer you really do feel like family. As soon as I stepped into Nuevo Leon for the first time, I knew it was going to be an authentic experience. They give you marinated pork with fresh tortillas, chips and spicy salsa as soon as you sit down. The tortillas are made fresh and, though I usually love corn tortillas more, you must try the fresh flour tortillas.

Each time I have dined here, the service has been truly outstanding. If you like overly friendly service that will interfere with your meal, this is not the place for you. But if you love real old-fashioned, efficient and freindly service, this is the place! I am always greeted with a sincere smile and I always feel welcome, even if I have to wait a bit for a table, which is often the case on weekends.

Also, the food is a great value. You can get a huge plate of food here for $5, although the carne asada is worth the few extra dollars. Watch out though, cash only (although there is an ATM inside). BYOB, but you won't need it to enjoy the food! A really authentic and, more importantly, delicious Mexican place: unbelievable food, great value, excellent service, friendly atmosphere. Don't waste your time anywhere else, unless it is your Abuelita's house!



Provided by Citysearch - 
Authentic Mexican food, the best in Chi town

If you want the best food in Chicago, look no further. This is all about the food. Other highly rated restaurants for Chicago are because of cheap drinks. People go there to get smashed and don't care that the food stinks. Get them drunk for 5 bucks and throw in some cheesy mariachi band and they think they found the best thing since sliced bread. Well if you want the best FOOD then come here. Best fajitas anywhere and fresh homeade tortillas. Not store bought taco bell brand tortillas like most restaurants. I am Mexican and if you want REAL Mexican food, you found your place



Provided by Citysearch - 
Authentic Mexican

I grew up in Southern California, where there are plenty of traditional, authentic mexican restaurants that are family run. I've been in Chicago two years and haven't had any luck until I went to Nuevo Leon. This place makes you feel at home, the food is outstanding, and I have finally found my staple mexican restaurant in Chicago. No reason to go anywhere else as far as I'm concerned. The Chile Rellenos are excellent, and my girlfriend had the Enchiladas Suiza with Mole sauce and it was outstanding.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Best Mexican food I've ever eaten

At 3pm in the afternoon we were lucky to get a tabel for three people. Don't be afraid to go to Pilsen and eat at this restaurant. Located just two blocks east of the 18th street blue line stop, this is simply the best mexican food my wife and I have ever eaten. All the food tasted home-made, the refried beans are made with lard, the guacamole tasted freshly made, the corn chips and flour tortillas are obviously homemade. I had the Enchiladas Suizas with mole sauce...excellent. Wife had Combinacion which was good, but she liked the appetizer Nachos Dias even more. Free cup of chicken vegetable soup served to all.