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El Chaparral Mexican Restaurant

Map & Directions
(15 Reviews)

15103 Bandera Rd, Helotes, TX 78023

(210) 695-8302

Today: 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
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General Info
Three decades and two generations of experience and passion go into every smiling face and mouth-watering bite that make-up El Chaparral. Our family history is etched into everything we do. In 1972, our parents, Charlie and Mary Garcia, followed their dream to a small eatery in Helotes, Texas.
Regular Hours
Mon - Thu:
Fri - Sat:
Extra Phones

Phone: (210) 695-8288

Primary Phone: (210) 695-8288

Primary Phone: (210) 695-9121

Phone: (210) 695-9121

Fax: (210) 695-9121

Payment method
all major credit cards, amex, discover, master card, visa
Helotes, Northwest Side

EL Chapparal Mexican Restaurant

Mexican Restaurants, American Restaurants, Caterers, Latin American Restaurants, Restaurants
Other Information

Parking: Lot, Private

Wi-Fi: No

Bike Parking: Yes

Attire: Casual

Wheelchair Accessible: Yes

Cuisines: Caterers, Mexican, American, Latin American

Alcohol: Full Bar

Takes Reservations: Yes

Outdoor Seating: Yes



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Provided by Citysearch - 

My mother and I have passed by El Chaparral in Helotes many times on our way from Bandera to San Antonio and have always commented on how busy they seem to be ALL the time. So today we thought we would stop in for lunch and check it out for ourselves what all the fuss was about. Well, let me tell you that we were extremely pleased from the moment we walked thru the moment we left! The atmosphere is very appropriate, the menu is varied and the prices are quite reasonable. This was only our waiter's 2nd day and Andreas did an excellent job! The salsa - don't get me started about the salsa - can we just say they must have put drugs into to because I was immediately addicted to it! It is absoulutely the BEST salsa I've ever had and I have had plenty in my over 50 years. I decided to try something different from my regular ""mexican food meal"" and tried the spinach enchilada with puffy chicken taco. WOW - most delicious! My mother had the cabrito wtih enchilada and a taco. She was truly impressed as well. We will most definitly be going back and bringing other family and friends as well. Muy bueno!



Provided by Citysearch - 
Very Poor Service

I'm a local Helotes resident who has been a long time customer but no more. I have had nothing but bad exeperiences over the last half dozen times I've been there and so today was the last. The biggest problems have been mostly service related. Everything from being seated at dirty tables to not get food or not able to get silverware. Today we (wife and I) stopped after some Christmas shopping and we basically had the place to our selves. We were seated, given the complimentary chips, and menus but that was it. We went through a whole bowl of chips without even so much as an offer to get drinks. We left without eating. It is a shame as this place was one of our local favorites....but not any more.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Generally poor service but my family liked it so I went

My family of five and my extended family of 18 plus friends have celebrated many birthdays, homecomings, holidays and gathering at El Chaparral in Helotes. This evening was the worst experience I've had at any restaurant in a decade. We arrived and I told one of the three girls at the hostess center we had a party of FIVE. She asked for a name and I gave her the name of the majority of family members MITCHELL. During this time two more girls came up to the hostess station and started pulling the tickets away from the girl that was writing. I had my reservations but I thought surely they had a system. My sister and I went to the bar for a margarita and the rest of our party stood directly in front of the hostess station waiting. After about 15 minutes, a hostess came through calling for MITCHELL party of two. We didn't move because of course we had a party of five. When no one responded to the call, I went up and asked them to look to see if there were two MITCHELLS because we were a party of FIVE. I told three different girls at the hostess station and got no response until a fourth girl very abrasively told me they would fix it. Her inappropriate behavior would have been overlooked had she actually fixed it but she went back to the list, changed the number to 5 and CROSSED IT OFF THE LIST. All five of our party moved to the banister directly in front of the hostess station and waited for another 25 minutes. Finally, I went back to the girl whose apparent responsibility was writing and maintaining the list and asked her to show me where they'd fixed the list. Very reluctantly she showed the list that contained our name which had been crossed out several times. The initial mistake came from a failure to listen and follow through. Everything that happened after that is beyond disappointing. When my father heard about the hostess tell us that they'd called our name and we hadn't responded after having waited 40 minutes right in front of them, he walked out. He will not be coming back which means you've lost the business of not just five or ten, but almost twenty. All because an inefficient system led to a mistake that led to a complaint that led to a vicious response. Changing the number to 5 and immediately crossing it out was nothing but ugly.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Best Mex in San Antonio area

Get in line, everyone else already knows about this place.....reasons to go: Great food, great service and great value.....which explains the crowd that is always there....

For your first time in....order the Valarie Special.....get a soft beef taco to go with it....real iced tea with lemon...

If you arrive and there is a can just order at the bar, take a stool and have a and be gone before those in front of you are seated...

The Truth Guy


Provided by Citysearch - 
It's ""The Place"" for San Antonio TEX MEX

If you want great San Antonio Tex Mex food, just head out Hwy 16 north and stop for awhile at El Chaparral on the outskirts of Helotes....Try the Carne Guisada plate with Big Red for a drink...pure San Antonio...

GOOD FOOD, GOOD TIME for all ............

ps. Watch your speed through Helotes, PD has their radar on.



Provided by Citysearch - 
excellent Mexican, but leave the vega at home.

El Chapperall was a great experience for us and we will be coming back. The staff person who answered the phone was ready and willing to take into account our needs.
We arrived about 45 minutes before our reservation time, and it was even more enjoyable due to the great attitude of the welcome staff and the free (and delicious) bean soup and margaritas. A+ for the thoughtfullness.
We were seated with about a 15 minute over wait time, which we enjoyed, however I can see how some could be put off by this. This place is not for the punctual, it is for the fun.
The ordering and discussion was very animated and the waiters (2) came by frequently enough that no one did without drinks or chips and salsa.
I was very pleased and surprised that our waiters had the foresight to refill everyones drink orders and water and iced tea BEFORE dinners were presented to table occupants.
The food was for the most part very good. The only negative was the enchilada plate, smothered in way too much cheese. It was eaten by everyone as cheese on the excellent chips, so we made our own nachos at the table with some refried beans brought to us for free by the manager.

All in all, 4 star night out.
I don't know if its like this all the time, but we are going back this coming month.

Bon Appetite!



Provided by Citysearch - 
Incompetent is the first thing that comes to mind.

I'm really not a picky eater, neither is my wife, or my father for that matter. However my wife is vegan and I like food that is half way decent, so we try to compensate for the hassle of serving us by being very friendly and not too picky. That's why my experience at El Chaparral surprised me.
About one week ago my father, wife and I went to El Chaparral for a quick bite before seeing a concert at Floore's. It took about 45 minutes to get a seat, which which was not their fault, but then it took us about another twenty to get any service or drinks.
When our waiter did come, he was kind of a jerk. My wife asked if their beans and rice were cooked with lard. Our waiter left without saying anything and ten minutes later came back to say they were. My wife then asked if it was possible to get the vegetarian enchiladas, but with the sauce on the side with no rice and beans, and a salad on the side, which of course she'd pay extra for. The waiter said he didn't know if he could do that and then took the rest of our orders.
In the meantime we ordered some guacamole for our chips with no onions in it. Of course when it did come there were plenty of onions to be found so we sent them back twice before they actually got the no onion thing right.

When our food did come my wife's plate came with two un-sauced enchilada's, no sauce on the side, with the rice and beans smack dab on the plate.
If this wasn't enough we had to ask several times for the side salad.

As far as the rest of our food went it was pretty sub par, I mean to be honest it was TacoBell level. Next time you're hungry for some overpriced Tex-Mex and crappy service, this is your place. But if you have dietary needs or concern expect to be treated like some kind of leper. This place is for the tasteless.



Bones in the Shredded Chicken

We live close to your newest restaurant on 1604/Redland Rd. and have eaten there several times. We are not going back for awhile though. We have found small bones and tought ligaments in the shredded chicken in your green chicken enchiladas several times and quite frankly that is a real turn off. I am not writing this to receive a coupon etc. - do NOT want one but I think you should be aware you have a problem with this.

Hope you take this as constructive criticism. Sincerely, Carol C.



Provided by Citysearch - 
Best Mexican!

Beautiful restaurant inside and out. I was born and raised in San Antonio and this is my absolute favorite mexican restaurant.



My Favorite in Southwest Texas

We first dined at El Chaparral upon moving to Helotes in 1995. It quickly became my favorite Tex Mex restaurant in Southwest Texas. Their food is outstanding and is always freshly prepared. My favorite menu item is the chicken quesidillas. The owners lead their staff by example in providing five star customer service to all guests. They make both their long time patrons and new guests feel welcome and appreciated. The atmosphere is equally conducive to couples and families. ENJOY!



Provided by Citysearch - 
Expected Better Food

We had eaten once at El Chaparral in Boerne, which was really very good! So we expected a good experience when we ate at the Helotes location. Well, not so good this time. Waiter was friendly and helpful, but he forgot the silverware. We got our food and he left. That was the first time we realized silverware! We got someone to bring us silverware. My food was okay, but not as good as expected. Husband's food wasn't even hot when it got there. We both agreed that it wasn't as good as the restaurant in Boerne. Our food just didn't taste as well at all.



My Favorite

This family owned and operated restaurant is my favorite place to eat. Their menu is full of the standard Mexican dishes and they also have several special signature meals. One of the best is Juan���s Quesidillas. They are delicious. The atmosphere and decor is Tex-Mex and the seating is comfortable. Parking spaces are tight but there's plenty of space out in the field beside the parking lot. We enjoy breakfast Quesidillas on weekend mornings too.



A Helotes Gem

Located a short drive outside of Loop 1604, this place will be easy to spot; it will be the place jam packed with cars. This Helotes restaurant has experienced some tremendous growth yet managed to maintain an authentic Mexican cafe feel. The decor is clean and appealing, the waitstaff is attentive inspite of their youth, and the food will leave you satisfied. I especially love the beans that are served as an appetizer. Despite the expansion not too long ago, you can still expect to wait a while to be seated. Don't let the full parking lot discourage you, wiat times are not excessive. Prices are just a bit higher than what you may expect from a Mexican Cafe, but this is no small hole in the wall so you end up getting more than your money's worth.



Provided by Citysearch - 
What Tex Mex place doesnt serve Burritos

This is my first review. This place is awful. Service was the pits, waitor pushing me to make my decision. I love burritos, however this TEX-MEX place doesnt offer one? Chips were nasty and the small bowl of sausa they gave isnt big enough to get half the chip in. They bring out their Charro beans like they are the best thing ever, they were cold and not so good. Avoid this place, I have no idea why this place is packed on the weekends, maybe its just me, but save your money for the other great places here in san antonio.



Provided by Citysearch - 

The food was fantastic on our first visit, althought service was slow. It was during the day, so perhaps they were under staffed. I enjoyed the food and the atmosphere, I can't wait to go back and try the margarita!