St. Paul >Food & Dining > La Cucaracha
36 Dale St S, St Paul, MN | Directions 5510244.939887 -93.126199
Sunday To Wednesday From 11:00 AM To 10:00 PM Thursday From 11:00 AM To 11:00 PM Friday To Saturday From 11:00 AM To 12:00 PM
Neighborhoods: Summit Hill
Everyone was right. Not so good – I thought I would ignore the write ups on this place and check it out for myself. It couldnt be that bad could it? I had been a server for years so I am pretty understanding. Boy was I wrong.I called ahead and talked to Katharine the host who was the most friendly person I have ever talked to on the phone. She was informative on the food, pricing and told me if I wanted free chips and salsa I could sit in the bar. SCORE! saw one booth that was dirty so I asked the server an older blonde lady (keep her in mind) if I could sit there she said sure.and walked away. So i sat down at the dirty table and waited-and waited-and waited some more.She came back and asked if I wanted anything to drink. I glanced at the dirty still not set table and said sure a Stoli Raspberry 7 please she said ok and left. 5 mns came and went and she came back and informed me they dont have Stoli Rasberry so I ordered a Absolut Citron instead. She came back with a bowl of salsa *no menu* and then left again... no chips.. just the salsa.. So she came back and I asked her if I could get some chips and a water and MORE salsa and a menuso she came back with chips no water.. no salsa.. no menu. So i sat there with my empty basket of chips and salsa and my drink and Katharine saved me and brought a menu I looked it over and waited and waited about 10mns the server came back and i orderd a taco salad. I figured I was safe with that. Sat there with my empty chips and salsa no water and dirty table. Food came I asked for more salsa which she DID bring this time but no silver ware. So i sat there looking at my food and the fruit flies waiting for me to leave and she came back to see how the food was.. i said i didnt know since i needed silverware she brought me some and never came back. She finally did but i went to pay my bill at the hostess station and left pretty sad about the situation. That could have been a great experience but was ruined by crappy service when it wasnt even that busy ;(
mediocre food, horrible service – I've lived near La Cucaracha for quite some time now. Whenever I get hungry for mexican food, I decide to give it another try. Well my last time was definitely my last time. Hands down the worst thing about going to this place is the service. The wait staff usually treat me as an annoyance, rather than a customer. You'll wait quite a long time to get to your table, and quite a long time again to get your drinks. Another downer is the fact that you have to pay for chips and salsa. Lame. The food is usually just fine, but seems to take a long time to get back to the table. In short, don't go. You'll be disappointed.
World's blandest Mexican food. – I would not recommend this restaurant to anyone. The service was awful. The people sitting next to us arrived 15 minutes after us and ordered their food after us. They received their meals before us, even though we both had tables of two. The waitress was always in a rush and never listened as we tried to order more drinks. The food had less flavor than a taco from Taco Bell. The ingrediants were fresh, but there was NO spice. I would go there again for drinks, but never to eat.
Still feeling it 2 days later – One trip to this place was enough for me. The margaritas were very good and the bar area had a nice atmosphere. The menu had a nice variety. Some items are a bit overpriced. You have to pay for chips ($2) which are very greasy. The chips & guac cost $9! I was there w/ a group of 8 so I got to see several dishes. Food presentation was not impressive. Most of the food was drowning in one sauce or another. The mole sauce was disgusting The steak fajitas made me & my girlfriend sick. We ate there 2 days ago and are still not back to feeling 100%. I will never go back again.
Slow Service – We had lunch at La Cucaracha for what was planned to be a nice afternoon but unfortunately soon after we received our appetizer the experience went down hill. I tried to order 3 tacos with one being chicken and 2 beef but to substitute chicken in 1 taco would cost $4. After we got our food numerous fruit flies swarmed our table the rest of our lunch which forced us to eat quickly because we really wanted to get out of the restaurant. I also was out of water for close to 10 minutes during lunch. After we got our check we noticed that the gratuity had already been added at 15% even though there was only 2 of us. She later explained that this had happened by accident and we weren't obliged to pay that amount but we did anyway since it was still on our receipt. To top of the poor experience it took us a long time to get our card and check back even though the restaurant was very quiet because of this receipt issue. To top off the experience when I got home later in the day there were 3 charges to the restaurant instead of 1 totaling $172 instead of the $36 we owed. It was a bad experience and we will not go to the restaurant again. We would have been much better off going to Don Pablo's.
Not worth the Price – Terribly overpriced, Marguerita's tasted like they were poured from a can, Chips and con casa were tough and were spicy with out any flavor. WON'T GO BACK!!!
Go to district del la Sol instead. – I have been many times as I live in the area, and people keep saying oh try it again. I have not had one good meal there. The drinks are over priced. I think the server was nice once. The last time was the last time. I took Mother who was in town for the weekend. She just wanted Mexican and some where close. She is has a sever limp and uses a cane. Walking for her is slow and difficult. It was off meal time so it was quite slow. The hostess walked passed many clean and empty tables to put the menus at the farthest one. When I asked if we could have a table closer to the door she accommodated with an eye roll and a sigh. The server did not show up to our table for almost 20 min. Just as we were preparing to leave. My mother said lets just order I am so hungry. The food was bland and cold when it arrived at our table 45 min later. When we mentioned it to the server she said well do you want it or not. The answer was no. We went to the South Robert area and had a great time. You can read my review of that place.
Love it...ALWAYS – 1. I find it funny that people can criticize this place when the first thing you see when you walk in to the left are the awards they've received, and quite frankly earned.
2. The food is really good. It's a family owed restaurant with their own family recipies. You can't expect to walk in and pay "Taco Bell prices." They need the money to keep themselves running!!!
3. The atmosphere in the bar is fantastic! And when Uli worked there, the place was PACKED!
4. If you are gonna complain about the service or wait, you need to realize the place is busy and to get good service, you better be nice to ALL the people who serve you. I used to hostess there and I HATED rude people!
5. Yes, you are going to have to wait for the food. You are not the only person there and it's not a fast food joint. Tres colores enchiladas, enchiladas suizas, and Gina's Yucatan tostadas are obviously going to take longer than the soup and salads.
6. Don't rate this place after your first time! There are new people training, people have bad days...blah blah blah...just try it again.
Wish it actually was authentic... – I took my dad here when he was in town after he'd heard they had some of the best Mex in the Twin Cities. Needless to say, it was NOT the best Mex in the Twin Cities. We parked at the closest available spot, a 5 min walk down Summit. The host was cordial, but after that the service was spotty. Portions were large, which was nice given we were hungry, but lacked a certain umph that you'd expect out of authentic Mexican grub. Rather mild as well as if to suggest northerners couldn't handle the zip. Might as well be part of a chain......since it's about as authentic as Carlos O'Kelly's.
Around since the '60s, this cantina is still a St. Paul favorite for fresh food and fiestas. – In Short
The Flores family named their restaurant after the Mexican song, hoping to inspire festivity with dance, drinks and good food. Lively music, strong margaritas and a lengthy menu certainly do the trick. Adorned with bright pinatas and murals of Mexico, he restaurant is often crowded with families and groups of friends. Entrees are enormous and feature tres colores enchiladas and light and crispy flautas with goat cheese and avocado.
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