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General Info
El Vez is a contemporary Mexican restaurant located in Philadelphia. It offers casual dining and offers many food items, such as tacos, ahi tuna tostadas, carne asada and adobo rack of lamb. The chopped salad with grilled corn, chayote and almonds is a popular item on the menu, together with its tender beef shoulder with tricolor salsas. In addition to beer and wine, its special cocktails include made-to-order guacamole and margaritas with fresh-squeezed juices. The restaurant s desserts include flourless chocolate cake, peanut butter mousse, carmelized bananas and coffee mousse with kahlua foam. El Vez also offers banquet facilities and can accommodate groups of up to 16 guests with a limited menu.
Hours

Regular Hours

Payment method
paypal
Price Range
$$
Neighborhoods
Center City, Center City East
Other Email

Categories
Mexican Restaurants, Bars, Family Style Restaurants, Latin American Restaurants, Restaurants
Other Information

Parking: Street

Wi-Fi: No

Bike Parking: Yes

Attire: Casual

Wheelchair Accessible: Yes

Cuisines: Mexican, Latin American

Alcohol: Full Bar

Price Range : Average

Outdoor Seating: Yes

Takes Reservations: Yes

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Reviews

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markb30269120

06/13/2012

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Editorial review from Citysearch

Great food and classic Margs.

fisherprice

02/10/2012

Overall
Great food and drinks. A litt...

Great food and drinks. A little too pricey though. $20 for 4 fish tacos? Turns into a great bar late at night.



If they could reduce prices, this place would be awesome. But only for those special occasions now.

absweeps

11/26/2009

Overall
Awesome!

Great food. The stuffed peppers are some of the best I've ever had. Great ambiance as well!

tobinjan

05/20/2009

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Excellent food!

We loved the tacos, the tuna appetizer and the nachos (which were a huge portion, even for gluttons!).

futurechef

05/10/2009

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Good Mexican Food

This place is almost identical to Distrito. The food is about the same as it is at Distrito. The place looks a little worn though.

fyt

02/07/2009

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
I don't know what some of you were talking about - this place was great!

From the minute we walked in - we were greated with smiles. We sat in the middle of the room. It was a little dark, but enough light to read the menu and see the decor. The service was really good - Jack our waiter had the menu down to a science and was very happy to answer any and all questions. He paid just enough attention to us. Now the food - OMG - I was nervous about this place from reading some of the reviews. I ordered the taco sampler and was more than happy - beef, pork, sea bass, mahi mahi, etc. If a flower had a taste - this was it. Each one was better than the next. Kudos to the Chef and staff. Dessert -well - make sure you save room. Drinks were on the same level. This place is a class act. The price is on the higher end - but as they say you get what you pay for - this was worth it. I highly recommend it!! Enjoy.

bethfox13

12/02/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
hope you like salt

the menu is creative & perhaps mexican inspired- but it's a far cry from authentic mexican food. my husband is from new mexico & we've taken numerous trips to the southwest and mexico where i've had better food from roadside carts. i went with 2 friends & we ordered 6 items to share- each greasier and saltier than the next. stop in for the atmosphere, which is fun, grab a kitschy cocktail and then go to dinner someplace else. the only thing keeping me from giving this place one star was our server- who was gracious and prompt. with so many great restaurants in philly, i'm surprised this place is still open.

fermina25

10/08/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Good fun atmosphere but way too loud

El Vez is a good spot to go with a big group of people, but your experience can depend on where you are seated. Try to get a spot in one of the round booths, those are the most intimate and easy to hear everyone at the table. Last time we were there we sat at a table behind the bar (8 of us) and we literally could barely hear eachother speak. I had to text with my friend across the table because I couldn't hear a word she said. The music is way too loud, which makes the chatter almost unbearable.

Foodinista

08/15/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Insect in the Sangria... the type of insect that inhabits dirty homes and restaurants

Upon arriving & being seated, drinks were ordered. Once we received our drinks, one of the guests began drinking her sangria when she noticed a ""insect"" which city search will not allow me to name, about 3/4 of an inch long, floating in her drink. When brought to the attention of our waitress, she gave a brief unconcerned apology (""i'm sorry""), took the drink to the kitchen & proceeded to show it to her coworkers. It wasn't until about 10 minutes later that she returned to our table, upon our request to see if we were ok. Furthermore, not one staff member or manager came to rectify the situation until two of our party members went to speak to the hostess. Finally, a manager came over (10 minutes later) offering appetizers as good measure. We left as the birthday girl was disgusted and unable to eat anything.

MrCoHead

06/26/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Good food & drinks; Really bad service & treatment

I was looking forward to trying El Vez after hearing about their good guacamole & margaritas.

We arrived at 9:30 on a Thursday & the place was prob 1/2 to 3/4 full - with lots of people at the bar and less eating. We asked the hostess if we can get a table - as our plan was to get guac, appetizers and a pitcher of margarita. The hostess told us we'd need to order entrees in order sit at a table. I found this odd -having lived in nyc & other major cities I've never seen a respectable restaurant forcing you to order a certain # of entrees to sit down. A policy of ordering food at a table is totally understandable ? but forcing you to eat a certain quantity of food, to me, signifies a low-end establishment milking revenue.

We said ok, with no real plans to order entrees, and sat down. We figured a $65 meal with a margarita pitcher, guac, and appetizers would suffice.

We then received probably the worst treatment I've ever experienced. Our waitress was rude, sarcastic, pushy and made us extremely uncomfortable. When we ordered the pitcher & guac she asked us if there was anything else we wanted to order. We said we?ll order more, but not right now as we wanted to relax and order more as we went along.

About 3 minutes later she came back asking for our order. We said not yet. 2 minutes later our pitcher came. As did more ordering questions. 2 minutes later guac came - she then pretty much wasn't leaving until we ordered more food. So we ordered an appetizer & side dish ? at the same cost as an entree. She then looked straight at me and asked me ?what I wanted for my entree?. I said, ""I don't want an entree"". From there it got even worse - with her talking to other waitresses and pointing and gesturing at us, making sarcastic comments about us ?drinking up? and overall being plain rude. We tried to relay our frustrations to a manager but we left after 10 min of waiting at the front desk.

Bottom line: good food & good drinks ? but bad treatment ruined it.

k11221122

06/19/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
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POSWO2

04/29/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Amazing Mexican, with a modern twist

My friend and I really enjoyed dining here. It was a great vibe, really huge bar scene. We went around 10:00 and were seated promptly. The nachos mama's were amazing!!! A must try. They had a variety of food to choose from. I also got the enchilada's mixtas. It was delicious and HUGE. I recommend sharing this entree with two people. My friend got two different taco platters, he loved it! Overall great experience. They even had a black & white photo book that you can take pictures in. Really cute touch! Definitely give this place a try if you're in city center.

colleensarfino

04/21/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Great food, Great atmosphere, Great times

This has got to be my favorite place in the city (next to Continental Mid-Town), especially to hang with friends. The Guacamole and everything else I've tried is awesome, the decor is fun and uplifting, the drinks are great...this place is always a good time, and even if your company is lackluster--go to El Vez...the night won't be a total bust! :)

anamin

02/20/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Great on every level

My sister and I loved this place! The hostesses were very friendly, and our server, I believe her name was Susannah, was extremely pleasant and attentive. We ordered the guacamole, bass tacos, beef gorditas, and the Short ribs. All were amazing. I loved loved loved the beef gorditas. The margaritas were also great . The food came out so fast, we were so shocked! Great atmosphere, pleasant staff, and the manager even came over to see how we were doing. I would definately recommend this place. El Vez has found new regulars.

Iamafatty

02/19/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Great Guacamole, bar scene, great everything

Been here a few times. Although it can get a bit too loud at times, thats about the only drawback I can see. The Guacamole is fantastic and is offered in six or seven different, unique styles. Have had the taco sampler the last two times I've been here and could eat it every night if I could. Has a great bar scene and the location is great for people watching.

mediocrityrulesphilly

01/06/2008

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Excellent food, poor seating policy and flighty hostesses

I went to El Vez with a friend on a Thursday night for drinks. We were told to wait at the bar by a few young, flighty hostesses even though there were at least ten tables open, many of which were for two people. I pointed this out and she claimed that people had reservations and that they would be clearing out the bar, tables were for ""full service"" only. So we waited at the bar for about 15 minutes and not one seat opened up. I asked again if we could be seated at an open table and was denied. No one at the bar was planning on leaving anytime soon, especially since I spotted several groups of people with full meals, even though the bar is supposedly just for drinks! We decided to leave and have pre-dinner drinks elsewhere. So we went around the corner to dependable and friendly Fergie's for a few drinks. Despite being initially frustrated with El Vez and the hostesses (who seemed quite flustered and incompetent), we decided to go back to the restaurant a little later for dinner at around 10PM. We were seated promptly, since we were there for ""full service"" and had an excellent server. Our bill totaled well over $100. We might have spent even more money had we been seated the first time around. When a restaurant is charging upwards of at least $10 a piece for drinks, you should consider seating customers at once, anywhere they like, especially if there are numerous tables open. Chances are they'll end up ordering food as well. That night, I left a comment card detailing my frustration, but never heard back from anyone. I wonder if it was even submitted by the hostess or just tossed in the trash... Upside of Anger: Everything we ordered was delicious including the Pink Cadillac Margaritas, Frozen BloodOrange Margaritas, Queso Fundido Con Carne, Chicken Mole, and Yucatan Salmon with verde rice and saffron-chile sauce. Yum yum yum.

krasmor

09/15/2007

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
if you're looking for great food, great drinks, and great service then this is your place!

This is my first time posting. We've been to El Vez several times in the past few months and every time we've had excellent service including friendly attentive servers. Of course the margaritas are fabulous but the food is the highlight of our evening. The seafood is always fresh and cooked to perfection. Our favorite menu items include the Indian Red Lopez guacamole, the diver scallops, mojo grilled shrimp, and the Chilean sea bass when it is offered as a special. Desserts are not an after thought here, the chocolate cake is purely sublime.

nacazo

08/07/2007

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
they think they're God's gift to Restaurants.

The portions were ridiculously small. They were not your typical Mexican either. They start with a typically Mexican dish and change it in an interesting way with a good flavor but not enough. I left hungry. The decor is interesting I grant them that. The servers are total snobs.

tyuabdul

07/23/2007

Provided by Citysearch - 
Overall
Nasty staff

We went after work one day. The hostess was rude. The ""manager"" was even worse. I have noticed that, at the Starr restaurants, the staff acts like you are lucky to be in the restaurant (I haven't been to all of them - but the same thing happ'd at Continental).

On top of it all, the mojitos we ordered were ridiculously small. I do like the Oscar DeLaHoya bicycle atop the bar.

Avoid this place - go somewhere friendlier!!!

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