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El Real Tex-Mex Cafe

El Real Tex-Mex Cafe

Mexican Restaurant · Montrose
1201 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77006, United States
Hours:
Closed until 11:00 AM (Show more)
  • Mon–Wed
    • 11:00 AM–10:00 PM
  • Thu
    • 11:00 AM–11:00 PM
  • Fri–Sat
    • 11:00 AM–Midnight
  • Sun
    • 10:00 AM–10:30 PM
Price:
$$$$
Reservations:
Yes
Menus:
Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Happy Hour
Drinks:
Full Bar, Cocktails
Credit Cards:
Yes (incl. Discover & Visa)
Wi-Fi:
Yes
Outdoor Seating:
Yes

El Real Tex-Mex is your grandfather’s vintage Tex-Mex with a kick. Always fresh and delicious, come grab a bite at the famous El Real!

8.0/10

Based on 317 votes

People like this place

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  • What you need to know
    Jorge
    "If you want the puffy tacos, the Picadillo Beef version is the best."(9 Tips)
    Rebecca S.
    "Montrose zip."(9 Tips)
    Robyn F.
    "Cheese enchiladas are best authentic Tex Mex I've had."(6 Tips)
    Randi R.
    "Try the bacon enchiladas on the brunch menu...dynamite!!"(18 Tips)
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114 tips and reviews.

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  • Mexican food
  • margaritas
  • enchiladas
  • puffy tacos
  • montrose
  • fajitas
  • Tex-Mex cuisine
  • good for groups
  • casual
  • Chili con carne
  • good for a quick meal
  • churros
  • outdoor seating
  • family-friendly
  • great value
  • quesadillas
  • micheladas
  • burgers
  • lively
  • happy hour
  • Abel S.

    Looks better on TV's Unique Eats - "Chingo Bling" - A smoked chicken stuffed Poblano pepper dish with an enchilada and a tamale. See video here at: http://www.ulive.com/video/houstons-finest-tex-mex

    Abel Sanchez · October 20, 2013
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  • Christy L.

    Nice retro Tex-Mex. I'm a fan of spicier salsa, but other than that the tex-mex standards are outstanding. The fajitas are great, and so are the enchiladas. I like that they have pork as a filling.

    Christy Landes · September 18, 2014
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  • AskMen

    The menu isn't final, nor the room, but if you keep a close eye on the Twitter feed, you'll notice a few hints - such as The Tampiqueña Plate was originally served at the Tampico Club in Mexico City. Read more

    AskMen · March 11, 2011
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  • Jenn

    This is true, classic Tex Mex of the highest order. That means you get a lot of mild chili gravy, cheese, and lard. Queso, guacamole, salsa, and good portions. Not a fancy restaurant, but good.

    Jenn · January 21, 2012
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  • Harold i K.

    Don't come any time after 8. The waiters start to not pay attention because they are focused in doing their side work and not you, the guest. The manager was nice and helpful. But don't come after 8.

    Harold i Kelly · August 8, 2013
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  • The Wall Street Journal

    The restaurant serves rib-sticking, chile-inflected grub of the greasy-finger, tingling-lips variety. Be sure to check out the San Antonio-style puffy tacos. Read more

    The Wall Street Journal · August 3, 2014
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  • The Daytripper

    And if you want food visit El Real Tex-Mex, where famed food writer Robb Walsh and celebrity chef Brian Caswell have teamed up to bring you the most authentic Tex-Mex experience you can have.

    The Daytripper · April 17, 2014
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  • Fez

    Salsa was fresh and roasted, yet, not enchanting. Service was 110 on point. Maybe over vigilant. Fajitas were tasty and soft. Pico de gallo was my favorite thing here.

    Fez · September 3, 2014
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  • AlmostVeggies.com

    Milk Shake “No Minors” combines Brandy & Kahlua with ice cream in the very best way. Do yourself a favor: Skip the margarita and order this shake, for it is grand. Read more

    AlmostVeggies.com · October 15, 2011
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  • Jere D.

    Food is good, service is great but be prepared for spicy as everything they make is higly spiced. However, if you talk to the chef he can make something special for you.

    Jere Douglas · August 22, 2011
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  • Kelly B.

    BAD food. Salsa tasted "off". Chicken would not cut (like rubber). Beans & rice had a strange lingering taste (like vomit). AND there were NATS flying ALL over our table. Worst tex mex I've ever had.

    Kelly Buchanan · December 7, 2011
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  • Miriam G.

    We got great service even though we came just before closing and stayed well after. Very grateful for that, and for the excellent frozen margarita!

    Miriam Goldman · March 15, 2015
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  • Houston Press

    Try the Fajita Taco Salad! El Real gets extra points for using fajita beef and offering fragrant dressings such as jalapeño lime and cilantro ranch.

    Houston Press · August 27, 2013
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  • Randy S.

    I had the combo plate with a puffy taco...beef enchaladas and a pork tamalie...it was really good stuff...it is a bit pricey for tex mex

    Randy Shumate · March 16, 2013
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  • Allison L.

    Love!! Food is great. Service is great. Atmosphere is great. Margaritas are great. All that and 1/2 off for Montrosians on Mondays.

    Allison LeTulle · October 3, 2013
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  • Heather L.

    Pozole (Mexican soup w pork, hominy & chile) was the best thing at El Real, but the FROZEN lime, onion & cilantro garnish plate was lacking.

    Heather Lockhart · April 18, 2011
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  • CultureMap Houston

    The Tex-Mex here is perfect as a post-midnight meal, and the owners know it — El Real is open to 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.

    CultureMap Houston · February 28, 2012
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  • Cheryl

    Their marinated pork tacos al carbon WERE hands down the best thing on the menu, yet they don't offer them anymore. Very disappointing.

    Cheryl · 1 week ago
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  • Dustin M.

    The first time I have felt actually let down by Tex-Mex. Chips are bad, salsa is worse. Menu is priced like Pappasitos with below Taco Cabana quality food.

    Dustin Misener · November 10, 2011
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  • Matthew S.

    Best tex mex in Houston. Great quesadillas, fajitas, micheladas and margaritas. Half off for Montrose residents on Mondays.

    Matthew Schwabenbauer · August 8, 2014
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  • Mark C.

    Have been here several times and have enjoyed it each time. Unlike some posts, I have the food well flavored and freshly prepared.

    Mark Christians · June 27, 2011
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  • Kassidy M.

    Service sucks, margaritas suck, overpriced, they only give 3 tortillas for a pound of fajitas, i asked them to split the order into 2 containers and they didnt.

    Kassidy Menace · April 13, 2011
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  • Houston Press

    El Real's chunky, beefy chili con carne is pleasantly darker and richer than the kind served at most Tex-Mex haunts.

    Houston Press · November 20, 2014
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  • James R.

    Truly terrible food. The #1 ingredient in everything seems to be salt. Lots of it. With the advent of modern refrigeration, there's no need to use this much salt! Food is mediocre, bad service.

    James Roman · April 1, 2012
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  • Miranda B.

    A pitcher of margaritas will fill about 7-8 glasses so it's a great bargain, but you will get a little sloppy!

    Miranda B · July 21, 2011
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  • Joe S.

    Great place. Try the green chile pozole, micheladas and the no minor milk shake. We are coming back soon

    Joe Soto · April 14, 2013
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  • Brooke C.

    The fire-roasted salsa is so simple yet fresh and lovely. Enjoy with a house margarita - rocks n salt!

    Brooke Candelaria · March 19, 2011
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  • Paul L.

    The Bacon Enchiladas are the best Enchiladas I have ever had and I have eaten a few enchiladas.

    Paul L. · January 31
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  • Houston Press

    2011 Best of Houston Winner: Best Tex-Mex Restaurant. Check out more Houston Press Best of Houston Winners here: http://bit.ly/JCaGyR Or go mobile with the free Best Of app.

    Houston Press · May 31, 2012
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  • Megan M.

    They reformulated the margs in question. Love the queso, guacamole and chips. Delish cheese enchiladas.

    Megan Maisel · May 25, 2011
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  • Jamie H.

    Bacon enchiladas with an egg on top for Brunch. Fantastic! Also, $1.50 mimosa brunch special. Win.

    Jamie Hoang · April 20, 2013
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  • Corey

    The best enchiladas in Houston hands down. Great chips and warm salsa. Great margaritas.

    Corey · August 7, 2014
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  • Chris B.

    Meh, nuthin special. Chips tasted too much like the lard they're fried in. Rest of the food was aight. Won't be back anytime soon.

    Chris Brom · August 16, 2011
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  • Kendall D.

    Peach margaritas were good but they make their enchiladas with flour tortills. BIG no no in my book!

    Kendall Davis · September 5, 2013
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  • Rebecca A.

    Service was great. Fajitas were, meh. Atmosphere was...different. Over all it was okay. I will most likely never go back...

    Rebecca Ancira · July 8, 2011
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  • Kris G.

    Enchiladas are absolutely TERRIBLE (the chicken & the beef). Puffy tacos are pretty good though...

    Kris G · October 22, 2011
    Save
  • Atlanta Food & W.

    Roll up your sleeves and get crackin' with Chef Caswell at Atlanta Food & Wine Festival May 29 - June 1 and learn how to barbecue crab! Read more

    Save
  • Laura G.

    Go here for a gut bomb of legit, heavy Tex-Mex. Always add a fried egg!

    Laura Gracey · July 12, 2015
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  • John I.

    Average. Ambiance low. Nit sure what all they hype is about. 1308 Cantina on Montrose is better and has better frozens.

    John Iannuzzo · June 11, 2011
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  • Stephanie

    Average food and prices are not worth it. Margarita was just okay. The taste of lard ruined the refried beans.

    Stephanie · May 30, 2011
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  • John E.

    I'm here with Serious Eats critic Carey Jones and she loves the margaritas and the queso. Plus, best churro I've ever had.

    John Edwards · October 22, 2011
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  • Rebecca S.

    Montrose Mondays means all food is half priced if you have a Montrose zip.

    Rebecca S · December 19, 2015
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  • Robyn F.

    Cheese enchiladas are best authentic Tex Mex I've had. Nothing fancy- just good!

    Robyn F · October 15, 2011
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  • Roberto D.

    Good food and friendly staff. I also found some good vegetarian options.

    Roberto D'Alba · February 18, 2015
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  • Marc S.

    Beef fajitas made the original way and cheese enchiladas with chili con carne.

    Marc S · June 22, 2012
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  • Randi R.

    Try the bacon enchiladas on the brunch menu...dynamite!!

    Randi Richardson · September 2, 2012
    Save
  • Jorge

    If you want the puffy tacos, the Picadillo Beef version is the best.

    Jorge · April 11, 2011
    Save
  • Jane C.

    Get ready to run for the border with Taco bell or Casa Ole style food but you will pay Pappasitios prices to eat here. Can you say rip off?

    Jane Cummins · February 21, 2012
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  • Amanda M.

    Montrose Mondays! Half off food on Mondays if you're a Montrose resident (77006 or 77098 license)

    Amanda Moreno · May 15, 2015
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  • Rebecca S.

    The Big Chile (wih chicken) is easily one of the best things o the menu

    Rebecca S · December 19, 2015
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