Empellon Taqueria

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4.6
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1616 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Contemporary Mexican
Top tags:
  • Fun
  • Good for a Date
  • Handcrafted Cocktails
Empellón Taqueria is local, Mexican inspired restaurant and bar from Chef Alex Stupak, located in the heart of the West Village.

Our menu focusses on tacos, ceviche, queso fundidos and seasonal vegetable dishes.

We use fresh masa to make our corn tortillas daily, (they’re gluten free).

Our drink menu focuses on margaritas and cocktails crafted from artisanal Mexican spirits. Beer and wine is also available, with happy hour specials served Monday – Friday, including late night (with $4 cheeseburger tacos!)

We serve dinner 7 nights a week, brunch on the weekend, as well as a Sunday prix fixe. Takeout and delivery is also available.

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What Insiders Are Saying

The Infatuation
7.4

As we’re all well aware, Mexican food in Manhattan generally blows. Empellon hasn’t come to save the day, but it isn’t adding to the problem either. While nothing blew us away, the food was solid with the good outweighing the bad.

Ratings 7.0-7.5:These are your neighborhood standbys - the places that you’ll happily hit for some pasta or a quick salad, but not a restaurant you are bringing your parents or (god forbid) a date to. The true embodiment of good but not great.
What 1616 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.5
Food
4.6
Service
4.4
Ambience
4.1
Value
Noise · Moderate
80% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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NS
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great spot and food!

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HC
Orange County
3 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 1Food 1Service 1Ambience 1

This place is NOT gf. The server had zero knowledge of cross contamination and gluten in general. He had no desire to help us figure out what was safe. We walked out.

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RR
New York Area
23 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

Excellent food.
Innovative options.

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D
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

Really delicious. Refreshing take on urban Mexican with unusual ingredients and combinations

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TW
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

My best friend and I were looking for a last minute spot for dinner while I was visiting the city. Excellent food and drinks were shared.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

Overall a very good experience! The front room was deafening and we were very grateful to be seated in the back where it was quieter. Food was mostly delicious, with the exception of the kale salad (not bad, just not very good). If you’re in the mood for a cocktail, definitely get the Pastry War!!!

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BN
Cleveland
4 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

In from out of town. We try to eat all over.the city and try new stuff. Food was great. Waiter was very helpful and personable. The brisket dish is INCREDIBLE. The shishito fundido was an awesome surprise. Have already been recommending it to people...even friends in NYC.

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F
Miami
1 review
Dined on 10 June 2019
Overall 3Food 2Service 3Ambience 4

The restaurant actually changed ownership. It is no more called "Empellon Taqueria", but just "Taqueria".
Menu is apparently similar, but food quality is way way lower.
Nothing to deal with how the place was before. It's now a different (and much worse) restaurant.

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YV
New York Area
25 reviews
Dined on 8 June 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

🌮 Empellón is eyes rolling in the back of you head good! High end Mexican that delivers more than just an expensive bill... Delicious food & top notch service make it worth every penny❤️

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N
New York Area
39 reviews
Dined on 5 June 2019
Overall 3Food 4Service 4Ambience 2

the food was really good. the service was excellent. we had a great table. HOWEVER: the noise level was off the charts. it was literally impossible to hear our small party of four talk. in fact, it was ear-splittingly noisy. not again.

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J
London
1 review
Dined on 31 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Good service overall though they brought out wrong dish and tried to argue I got the order wrong. Not cool. Otherwise everything else A OK!👍🏼

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MG
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on 29 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Every single item that we tried on the menu was phenomenal! This is definitely one of my new favorite spots to eat at.

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DY
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 27 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great food at an amazing price. This restaurant is is one of the best for tacos in NYC!

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OT
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on 25 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

We had a party of 6 and well behaved children we apart of it. Not only was our server fabulous but the food and drinks matched. Omar was our server and he was beyond accommodating - he made our visit special. This place is a must try and I will certainly come back when we visit next. Definitely try it out, you can thank me later!

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K
Baltimore
46 reviews
Dined on 17 May 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

Duck tacos were awesome! Service was fabulous and our server remembered the details!

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MN
New York Area
27 reviews
Dined on 17 May 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 4

The fish and oyster tacos were good - perfect batter but needed more flavor in the taco. Please bring back the lobster taco. The cashew dip is still fantastic. Love the spicy cucumber margarita but need a little more tequila.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 16 May 2019
Overall 2Food 2Service 4Ambience 3

found the cashew salsa heavy handed with the smoked paprika; chicken was dry and kale salad lacked zest. Pork dish saved the experience, along with the server’s attentiveness!

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RW
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 11 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Across the board, a great experience! The GM (Andrew) knows his craft. It’s a delight to encounter a well managed place.

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KL
Seattle
22 reviews
Dined on 10 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

Incredible food & great service....in NYC? Yep! Menu choices were super interesting with an unusual and tasty twist on Mexican cuisine. Cocktails were awesome. Definitely will be going back.

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SF
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 10 May 2019
Overall 3Food 3Service 2Ambience 2

Misleading happy hour pricing is advertised in general terms but when you get there it’s only for seating at the bar. Tacos are good but expensive.

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CK
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on 6 May 2019
Overall 3Food 4Service 4Ambience 4

Very nice tacos! A bit overpriced for the portions. The quality is very good though

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OT
Indiana
1 review
Dined on 5 May 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 2Ambience 4

The food was delicious. Cocktails were also good. Our server was horrible. Completely inattentive & rarely saw her. We left the restaurant more focused on the bad service than on the delicious fish tacos...some of the best I’ve had. :(

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KP
1 review
Dined on 5 May 2019
Overall 2Food 2Service 3Ambience 5

Their bottomless brunch was I thought $30, but ended up being $60. It didn't say Extra $30 for drinks, so I had assumed it was $30 for the whole thing bc who would charge $30 just for a small portion of guac, 2 thimbles of sauce and 3 small tacos. Well apparently this restaurant does. The tacos were nothing special, the guac was fine. I would recommend going back only to the bar to get the cucumber margaritas. Otherwise the street corner taco trucks are way better.

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FA
Birmingham
1 review
Dined on 5 May 2019
Overall 2Food 2Service 4Ambience 3

We ordered the lamb barbacoa tacos and the breakfast tacos with chorizo from the prix fixe menu for Cinco de Mayo. Both lacked flavor (especially the lamb). Staff was friendly and helpful, though.

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DA
New York Area
20 reviews
Dined on 4 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

In one of my many traveled roads, as a company manager for international dance companies, I have toured, and on vacation have visited extensively throughout Mexico and highly enjoyed its rich cuisine. Empellon Taqueria’s chef and founder, Alex Stupak, has extracted the very best of Mexican cuisine’s nuanced variety and given it a highly creative twist that reinvents the genre. And, thank you, Andrew for your kind hospitality. Empellon Taqueria makes other “trendy” South if the Boarder watering holes look like roadside stands. Do not put it off for manana; fiesta today!🌞🌺

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FM
New York Area
130 reviews
Dined on 2 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Excellent carnitas, roast chicken, guacamole, and tacos. Highly recommended!

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M
1 review
Dined on 2 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Food here is so good and so grateful that they have vegan options and the server was very accommodating

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r
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 30 April 2019
Overall 2Food 2Service 2Ambience 3

It was a bad experience, maybe they were having an off day... but I am definitely not coming back.

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BM
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on 29 April 2019
Overall 2Food 1Service 3Ambience 3

Significant drop in food quality and presentation over the last 24 months. A huge disappointment in this now faded, one-time crown jewel from Empellon.

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B
New York Area
23 reviews
Dined on 29 April 2019
Overall 3Food 3Service 4Ambience 4

Haven't been here for over a year... it has lost it's food edge although the drinks are always good.

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RS
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on 28 April 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

All the dishes we had were delicious, most notably the Brussels sprouts taco! Love the bloody Mary with tequila. Will definitely consider a report visit.

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c
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on 27 April 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

From the margaritas to their 7 signature salsas to the carnitas - every bite was perfection! The service was excellent as well and the space has a cool, relaxed vibe. We'll be back!

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OT
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on 27 April 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

Always a great experience. Food and drinks are perfect!

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a
New York Area
30 reviews
Dined on 25 April 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Food and service were great. A perfect place to eat before some music in the neighborhood.

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n
1 review
Dined on 24 April 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

One of the best restaurant experiences I’ve ever had period. Some of the best food I’ve eaten. Service was awesome. Brought a free dessert and candle for my wife’s bday. Telling everyone to go and will return ASAP. Get the pastrami tacos.

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SC
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on 16 April 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Delicious food!!

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D
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on 16 April 2019
Overall 3Food 3Service 4Ambience 3

Jammed into a loud space. $10 tacos that are good but can get the same or better for way cheaper. $26 guacamole that was so so. So loud and cramped not worth it. Overall there are plenty of better Mexican options

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 14 April 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 4Ambience 3

It was very good though service could have been a tiny bit more attentive
.

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M
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on 13 April 2019
Overall 3Food 3Service 5Ambience 3

The wait staff were super friendly and knowledgeable, the best part of the experience. Sadly the food was wanting. While the menu looked adventurous and seemingly reaching into the current modern leanings of cultural foods such as this, the taste and execution just wasn’t there and underwhelming. And for the quality of the dishes to be the way they were, I didn’t feel the cost was justified, which was I thought on the high end. Great margaritas though, and nice location. Lastly, the noise level was deafening at best, we had to yell to talk amongst ourselves. I won’t be back nor recommend, sorry.

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L
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 6 April 2019
Overall 2Food 2Service 2Ambience 2

RE: FOOD :Selection was awful.
Duck Taco's = Bland
Lamb Taco's = Too much heat (perhaps paprika). Good candidate dish for acid-reflux.

No starches offered as sides, like rice or even beans.

RE: Service : Waiter forgot my 2nd wine, although he did make up for it.

RE: Ambiance: Great place to go if you want to shout as a means of communication.

Overall, considering the money I spent there. It was a total disappointment.

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