El Camino Real
1040 N. 2nd St.
Philadelphia , PA 19123
Street parking only. Handicap access:
Cuisine type: Barbecue; Tex-Mex
Dinner - Mon. thru Sun.
A young Northern Liberties crowd goes burritos for this "border bar" revamp of the former Deuce from the owner of neighboring Bar Ferdinand. But the best of ambitions to recast Tex-Mex's tired image with a bi-concept menu of barbecue and scratch Mexi-cooking from the chef's family recipes too often gets lost amidst the sloppy bar scene and inconsistent kitchen. There's a serious smoker that still needs fine-tuning, but the huge beef ribs and seitan "wings" are best bets.
Mexico: burritos (chicken; cactus and potato; lengua; colorado); chile rellenos. Texas: fried pickle chips; jalapeno poppers; Texas chili; "veggie" seitan wings; BBQ beef back ribs; bourbon pecan pie.
The margaritas are just so-so, but there is a decent assortment of spice-friendly beers (when they're stocked), including Rogue chipotle ale, and refreshing Brooklyner Weisse on draft. There is also an extensive selection of fine American whiskies and tequilas.
Prepare to shout through the 98-decibel roar. (Ideal is 75 decibels or less.)
Hours: Lunch Monday through Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Dinner nightly, 5 p.m.-1 a.m. Weekend brunch, Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.