Brooklyn >Food & Dining > Rachel's Taqueria
408 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY | Directions 1121540.670269 -73.985576
Sun-Thurs 11:30 am-11 pm, Fri-Sat 11:30 am-1 am
Neighborhoods: Park Slope
What I liked was the complementary homemade chips and salsa they serve you as they sit down, which were delicious. I ordered an entree and pink-lemonade margarita which was part of their $5 margarita specials. The margarita was obviously not amazing because you get what you pay for, but not bad either. In my opinion, I feel that the place itself is a bit too expensive, especially since the food isn't that great.
If you want to just sit down and chill out while enjoying a few drips and some chips with salsa then this place is the spot. If you're looking to have a good meal, you might have to go elsewhere.
best Salsa anywhere- great basic mexican food – This place is a favorite. Good food, good service. Sometimes crowded and noisy especially at night. But the food is fresh, home made- even the chips, They are very accommodating. And the place is filled with old rock and roll memorabilia. I enjoy coming here, it's like having California Mexican food in the 70's
Good Cal-Mex – We've been four times now and every time I've been impressed with the food, service and value. For $17 you can get a big pitcher of good beer. In every application the marinated pork is outstanding. We went on a Friday recently so I got the shrimp tacos and they were pretty solid too. They make guacamole at the table to specification for about $10, fresh and delicious. I can't say I've ever gotten anything but exceptional service here. The waitresses are friendly, cheerful, and very attentive. The closed in back patio is great but closed in the winter.
First time not great, but will give it one more shot. – From reading the past reviews and my own recent experience at Rachel's, it seems like they need to get their act together. I know several people who have had great food and service here, so I thought I'd give it a shot on a recent weeknight. Our party of four had to wait at the bar for a while until a table was ready, which was fine given that the bartender made good drinks and the owner was friendly and gave us updates as to when the table would be available. Once seated the service was a bit off, and one person's dish was wrong (right ingredients wrong preparation), and my food came out iced cold (even hot the stuffed pepper was tasteless). They were apologetic about the mishap and heated up my plate and didn't charge for it, but after waiting so long for a table I was really ready for good, hot food. The owner came over at the end and again apologized for the cold food and messed up order, but I was still let down after hearing good things about Rachel's. I'll give this place another chance, but I hope they work out the kinks before they lose more customers.
Worst Treatment – We came in friday after work to eat and drink the deliciousness that we've all had at separate times before. We came in before servers' shifts began. We were invited to take a table and simply order from the register and take the food to our table. Totally ok! at 5 the servers began their shifts. The bartender that night came to our table and said that she'd be taking care of us for the rest of our stay. great! but.... not really.
She came to the table a half hour later with drinks we didn't order. We said we didn't order them but we'd have them added to our tab and drink them anyway. She never returned to the table. I walked over to her and ordered 2 more drinks. She never brought them but did charge us for them. We asked for our check to simply cut our losses. We had been sitting for an hour and no server stopped by to check on the empty empty glasses. She never came to pick up the check. I brought it to her to discuss the overcharge and she turned her back to me. Then finally, she took off the two drinks in excess. The check was brought back and we were asked to pay because people were waiting for our table.
Having been to this place before and loving my service I was shocked by this treatment. I will not go back to Rachel's in Park Slope because of the degrading treatment by a bitter bartender who frankly lost out on a significantly higher bar tab.
Large Insect in my drink. – The food was terrible. The service was very poor. Worst of all however, was the fact that there was a LARGE Insect in my horchata. A city insect. I had already drank half by the time I noticed. It was the most repulsive thing I've ever experienced in a restaurant. When i pointed it out to the waiter, he replied "oh sorry" and walked away, after leaving the check. Worst $20 ever spent. Gross.
Great Value & Good Eats – Been here a few times and each time had wonderful service (although no res) and the food is really good. Love the fish tacos and shrimp tacos - i would recommend getting the spicy sauce on the side as it can be drippy. My husband had the larger version of the Baja California & it was enormous & delish. If you like mole, go for the mole enchilada with pulled pork & beef - a pleasant experience, the mole was not burnt as is a problem with some other places and the meats were juicy & flavorful. Would def come back to try some of the other stuff on the menu. Sangria was a little weak but overall had a good time. Forgot to mention, the waitresses are really sweet - another time we were here, they didn't rush us out even after we had finished and were v patient while I was waiting for a friend to arrive who was v late. A great local joint, wish there was one in Bay Ridge.
No, really, it's like Mexican food from California! – The Scene
The owners of this Park Slope taqueria cut their restaurant teeth in 1960s California, and the decor at Rachel's reflects that fact with all the subtlety of a jalapeno. A surfboard greets diners by the door, and the walls are covered floor to ceiling with pictures of icons from the Summer of Love--Jimi, Jerry, Janis, etc. In the Christmas light-bedecked backyard, an environmentally themed mural accentuates the flower-power vibe.
Finally, a place to take West Coast transplants who whine about New York's sad lack of Cali-style Mex. Burritos the size of footballs boast fresh ingredients like tender, deeply seasoned barbacoa or plump grilled shrimp. And though fried fish tacos are missing cabbage, they at least get the fiery mayo sauce right--it's a respectable facsimile of San Diego roadside fare. Bummers are limited to not-creamy-enough guacamole, merely decent rotisserie chicken and margaritas sweet enough to hurt your teeth.
Hits: Fresh, tasty, cheap Mexican food in a pleasant back garden--what's not to love?
Misses: That there isn't one in every neighborhood.
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