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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Casual restaurant

Mon–Thu 11:00am–11:00pm
Fri 11:00am–3:00am
Sat 10:00am–3:00am
Sun 10:00am–11:00pm

Bar Beer, wine, liquor
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Not accepted


1201 Westheimer Rd.
(713) 524-1201
El Real
As good as any late-late-night Tex-Mex greasy spoon...why, what have you heard?

Long ago, we teamed up with this one hot-shot chef to start a restaurant that we thought would do justice to Tex-Mex. Never mind the name of the restaurant, or our chef partner. It was another city. You don’t know it. Ahem.

Anyway, despite our combined credentials, we got such sour feedback from everyone. Some said they could get better Tex-Mex from longstanding, humbler places; others said, “If it ain’t broke, why’d you go and break it?” Ouch. Looking back, it was a mistake to make our margaritas too sweet, but we eventually limed them up enough; and maybe we did choke the chili con carne with too much cumin. But when you ordered our cheese enchiladas—our pride and joy—with that and sour cream, it totally worked. Yet despite our efforts to use ideally melting yellow cheese, everyone just shrugged.

Fajitas were a pain: sometimes we’d get the marinade just right but overcook the meat, and sometimes they were tender but underflavored. And the puffy tacos! The shells would just melt into greasy puddles on the plate. Our chips and salsa were good—especially our secret guajillo salsa (you had to request it), and our refried beans lardy and awesome. Posole was rockin’, too. But man, what a tough ride it was.

We hear another restaurant-critic-and-chef team did something similar here in Houston. Anyone know how that turned out?

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