8138 W Third St, Los Angeles, CA | Directions 9004834.072303 -118.367205
Neighborhoods: Beverly Center, Central LA
This neighborhood bar is still going strong. Their margaritas have gotten better and more creative. Fresh fruit, unusual flavors, it all works deliciously. Nachos are a great way to sober up.
Love their pineapple infused shots. Tacos and tamales are so good. The decor is also very fun.
Nothing beats the tequila and tacos at El Carmen! – See the full El Carmen review at One Delish Dish.co:
This place is one of my favorite spots in LA. El Carmen is an unassuming tequila bar/restaurant tucked away on 3rd st. in the Mid-City West area. The entrance is just a plain door with a small awning and an old neon sign above it, but the tacos, insane tequila selection and Mexican wrestler decor make El Carmen stand out above the rest.
Their bar has every kind of tequila imaginable, complete with a tequila sampler and a novel-size list of margaritas. My personal faves are the jalapeno and the cilantro-ginger margaritas, but the pomegranate and blood orange margaritas are also really tasty and popular.
This place is great for happy hour, a light dinner or also for drunken munchies (since the kitchen is open late). The menu has a variety of options like nachos, ceviche and flautas, but I have a soft spot for their carnitas taco, the chicken enchiladas, and the sweet corn tamale. At $4.25 for one carne asada taco, I wouldn’t classify this place as the absolute cheapest in town, but they use quality meat and the unique art and music filled ambiance is a lot of fun and definitely can’t be found elsewhere.
tequila- to kill ya! – if you're looking for tequila, look no further. this place has got it. i like the red vibe in this place- it's kinda sexy. i've taken a lot of dates here cuz its easy to get romantic at the bar (if you can get a spot). actually the place is small so you can eat dinner here so that you make sure you have a place for your lady to sit. get the taquitos. and of course, plenty of tequila.
Great Vibe that the female bartender tries to ruin – I love the place....the crowd is always great, the drinks are great....BUT the older blonde female bartender seems unhappy all the time and has the worst attitude, she kind of ruins the vibe which is terrible. I still go there often since it's so close to where I live and I just hope that she isn't the one working the bar.
Another problem is the sewage smell in the hall and both bathrooms, I have never been to a bar or place that serves food and had to smell raw sewage, the smell is so strong and it's right next to the kitchen. I can't imagine why the owner or landlord does not fix the problem, it has been months. You would think the problem is in violation of a health code or something. It is hard to figure out why they refuse to close and repair the pipes.
As bad as the horrible smell is, the female, blonde bartender is actually worse to handle.
With both horrible down falls, the place is still so much fun and I always meet great people there.
Advice- hold your nose when you walk towards the back/bathroom area and ask for someone else to wait on you if the unhappy blonde tries to take your oder....otherwise you should have a great time.
Overpriced – Had a drink here on Friday night. $10 for a margarita on the rocks. It was mostly rocks with very little tequila. And it comes in a small glass. The bartender chick was pretty worthless when it came to service. Stick with the beer and the food.
How great is this place! – Dug this place for years, never fails to deliver on food, ambiance and of course, drinks. Great crowd too.
Happy hour has some nice offerings and attracted a good size crowd, even on a weekday. Bonus, a few blocks from The Grove, so nice place to head after a movie.
Mmmmm.... Pomegranate Margarita.... – My co-workers and I went to El Carmen last night for Happy Hour, most of us for the first time. I really liked it, although it's a cozy place with no outdoor, you quickly warm up to the place because of its pros. Mexican theme, great service - even though it was crowded, she was there whenever we looked up, and the food and drinks kept coming... (That's partly due to our amazing boss though) We couldn't stop raving about the food, we kept saying, "OMG, this is sooooo good! (Munch, munch, munch) Did you try the shrimp? (Munch, munch, munch) What about the guacamole? (Munch, munch, munch) Did you try the ceviche? And we kept eating! It was great! We love to eat, and all that is on the Happy Hour menu!!! Don't forget to try the pomegranate margarita... Bomb!
WOW. Great drinks and the Food is amazing – After work my co worker and I went for Happy Hour let just say we had a great time. Idalia the cool waitress told me to try a watermelon margarita it was grrrreat. Oh my the Tequila Shrimp were amazing but the Apple Fritter A la mode was mouth watering. If you are looking for great drinks, food and service this is the place to go.
WOW!! Best Margaritas Hands Down – So we went to this place for some coworkers. The place looks kinda small from the outsite, but I was very pleasantly surprised. Wrestlers are looking over you in this hot spot, with great ambience. The best part was the Cactus Fruit margarita. Wow!!! You must also try their desser menu. Their apple firtter a-la-mode was amazing!!!! Overall this place was a great spot, with people to mingle with and fun atmosphere.
Fabulous Fun! – Went last night after work for happy hour and let me tell ya we had a blast. The drinks were very tasty "watermelon margarita" on the rocks my fave as recommended by our cool waitress Idalia. The Tequila Shrimp didn't even touch down on the table "Banging"! You cannot leave without getting an order of the Apple Fritter A la mode...K if you do you I just might have to send my doggie Dolce Vita to teach you a thing or 2. Bottom line we had a wonderful time the food and drinks were "Fabulous". Looking for a low key place to have a great time, look no further!
Mexican Wrestlers and Tequila – El Carmen is one of those bars that just makes you happy. With the bold and funky decor of black velvet paintings, wrestler masks, Mexi-comic wallpaper, and illegal Vietnamese snake bottles, El Carmen gives so much in such a small package. It's like the "Three Caballeros" but with booze. The specialty drinks are never a disappointment, especially the homemade pineapple-infused tequila on the rocks and the lip-burning spicy Margarita. Don't let this small bar fool you...the food at El Carmen is some of the best (if not the best) bar food in all of Los Angeles. Notably the fish tacos and the potato flautas will make you regret eating that stupid lean cuisine you had 2 hours ago.
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