El Camino RealAddress:
1040 N. 2nd St.
Philadelphia , PA 19123
Neighborhood: Northern Liberties
Parking: Street parking only.
Handicap access: Wheelchair accessible.
Related reviews: El Camino Real
Cuisine type: Barbecue; Tex-Mex
Meals Served: Lunch Dinner - Mon. thru Sun.
Style: 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.
Specialties: 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.
Alcohol: 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.
Weekend noise: 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.