Another in the long list of Merivale offerings, El Loco is a Mexican Cantina, located smack bang in the middle of Surry Hills. Walk through the front entrance to The Excelsior pub on Foveaux Street and this looks like any normal front bar (apart from the $5 tacos sign I notice brightly painted on the outside wall). But venture through and you eventually end up in Mexico.
Note: this is not a place to be taken seriously, everything about El Loco screams fun. It is bright, full of rainbow colours and themed in very kitsch Mexican style. There are cactus’ galore, milk crates with colourful cushions, brightly coloured stools, rows of communal tables, mis-matched painted walls, loud music and people everywhere. Near the side street entrance, you’ll find the Tequila Shack on one side and the open kitchen on the other.
They’ve made it easy for you – you order your drinks and your food at the bar. After receiving your drinks (all served in plastic cups, no glass here) you’re given a large cactus to take back to your table as you wait for your food.
The food is fast, and it is good and we can thank Dan Hong for it. You probably won’t want to go past the $5 Tacos.
Ladies, a word of warning, a fair amount of liquid comes out of these Tacos when you eat them. Do not, under any circumstances, do what we did (eat them over our lap, though we did place a paper napkin on our lap too, not that it helped). We ended up wearing it. But, once we worked that out, we were able to eat our Taco reasonably well. But, not as well as we would have liked. Has anyone worked out how to eat these Tacos in a somewhat elegant fashion? But, we think that is the point. This is the kind of place where you are going to get your hands dirty.
Apart from the $5 Tacos (oh, and beware the ‘secret taco’ if you’re fussy about your meat), they also serve Nachos, Hotdogs, Sandwiches and even a Salad (just don’t assume that salad is necessarily healthy). But don’t expect anything fancy – this is street style Mexican food served in takeaway containers. Drinks wise, you’ve got an array of tequilas and tequila based cocktails to choose from as well as wine and Mexican beers.
The service is casual, down to earth and very very friendly. The staff are no fuss – dressed in logo t-shirts and ripped jeans. Anything goes in this place, people are just here to have a good time with their amigos. Don’t bother dressing to impress. I doubt anyone would notice, or care, anyway.
We can’t help thinking their catch phrase ‘Nuestra casa es su casa’ (our home is your home) certainly rings true. Another Merivale success story.
El Loco, 64 Foveaux Street, Surry Hills
+61 2 9211 4945
Mon – Tues – 12pm – late, Wed – 12pm – 1am, Thurs – Sat – 12pm – 3am, Sun – 12pm – 10pm
Category: Eat & Drink
About the Author (Author Profile)Shannon Cremer, Co-Founder of Urban Chic Guides, is a self confessed foodie, wine enthusiast, serial traveler, entrepreneur and professional networker. It’s fair to say Shannon has spent the majority of her free time eating and entertaining her way through some of the world’s great cities. When she’s not preparing travel itineraries or planning dinners and events for some of the world’s top and most discerning CEO’s, that is. Many an event venue has been found or restaurant recommendation lovingly penned by her hand and thus, Urban Chic Guides was born. Shannon believes wholeheartedly in foods ability to bring people together, to share and connect and it is this passion that drives Urban Chic Guides.
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