El Burro

17 Visitor Photos +

81 Main Road, Green Point, Cape Town Central, South Africa



Good for:

Bar Scene, Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Takeout


4.0 rating based on 3 ratings
3 Reviews

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Overall Rating

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Rating Summary

4.3 rating based on 3 ratings
3.7 rating based on 3 ratings
3.3 rating based on 3 ratings
4.3 rating based on 3 ratings
  1. Expert Review

    4.0 rating based on 1 rating
    Jan 2015 · morgantrimble

    El Burro probably won’t be the best Mexican food you’ll have in your life, but I’m pretty sure it’ll be...

    El Burro probably won’t be the best Mexican food you’ll have in your life, but I’m pretty sure it’ll be the best you find in South Africa. Mexican food is my all-time favorite cuisine, and sadly for me, it’s hard to find quality Mexican fare in South Africa. Several places try, and several places get it horribly wrong. For example, several times I’ve had “Mexican” food served with marinara sauce instead of salsa, and using Doritos for nachos is a common practice. The problem is, you just can’t get the proper ingredients—those delicious corn products, peppers, and spices—in South Africa. El Burro imports its own. It’s the only place I’ve ever found serving authentic corn tortillas, and I was told they import the masa harina to make them in house at significant expense!

    I’ve been to El Burro a few times and it’s always great food. The “build your own tacos” is my favorite—it’s tortillas (corn or flour) served with a main ingredient plus all the fixings (guacamole, sour cream, pickled onions, lettuce, salsa, pico de gallo, hot sauce, and refried beans). For the main taco ingredient I’ve tried the chilorio pork, which is a spicy, twice-cooked pork shoulder in garlic and chili paste, and I’ve had the fried line fish. Both were super tasty and make for quite a large meal. If you’ve got any room left at the end, try out the churros for desert, deep fried donut sticks coated with cinnamon and sugar and dipped in a bitter chocolate. El Burro also has a big drinks menu specializing in all sorts of creative margaritas as well as some interesting tequila or mezcal choices.

    The atmosphere at El Burro is very festive and decorated in a really charming manner with all sorts of Mexican themed knickknacks. Lunch is pretty quiet there, and there are great specials to save a little cash. Dinner is always packed, and you definitely need reservations for weekend nights. Generally reservations are recommended for weeknights as well. My only gripe with El Burro is that the service is always pretty slow, even at lunch when the restaurant is empty! The food quality makes up for it though!

  2. Expert Review

    4.0 rating based on 1 rating
    Dec 2014 · BBlond

    Right on Main Road in the buzzy Green Point strip, El Burro sits in the upstairs of a pastel-hued Victorian...

    Right on Main Road in the buzzy Green Point strip, El Burro sits in the upstairs of a pastel-hued Victorian era building. It has a big breezy patio and a bright and funky interior where the magenta walls are hung with folk art crosses and mirrors.

    As one of the only relatively authentic Mexican restaurants in Cape Town – El Burro gets many of the flavors surprisingly right – it fills early, especially on summer evenings, and you may find yourself waiting at the bar for a seat. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing since they have an impressive tequila menu as well as craft beers (a movement just starting to take off in South Africa).

    Seats are either inside at a mix of banquet and regular tables or outside on a long patio fronting the buzzing Main Road. The patio is refreshingly non-smoking, which is rare for Cape Town. Inside you’ll find a funky folk-art style with magenta walls hung with crosses and mirrors and the long wooden bar.

    The margarita list is long and relatively impressive, although if you are used to an authentic margarita you need to order the “Cointreau Margarita” as it is the only of the dozen or so options that has this key ingredient (or any other alcohol variant, like Grand Mariner, of it). All the other margarita options use agave syrup as a substitute, which frankly didn’t taste quite the same. That said, I had the chili margarita and it was spicy enough for me not to care.

    If you have been reading a bunch of my reviews, by this point you’ll know that I have a thing for calamari. Especially fresh calamari that is grilled the way they do it around Cape Town. The calamari appetizer at El Burro did not disappoint in this area. It was spicy, but cooked perfectly.

    The tacos here are what most people order and they come with a choice of either soft corn or wheat tortillas topped with a choice of goat, beef brisket, pulled pork or chicken mole poblano and come with sides of salsa, guacamole, sour cream and beans. And while they don’t quite taste like tacos in the Americas, they also don’t taste terribly off. El Burro also does enchiladas and quesadillas, but anyone used to eating authentic Mexican fare might want to stick with the more South African style entrees like the line fish marinated in a chipotle and lime rub and served on a bed of cauliflower mash and topped with avocado and mango salsa. It has a South of the Border flavor, but should it not taste like the food back home, won’t ruin the dining experience either.

    There are four homemade chili sauces on the tables, ranging from mild to hot. Beyond the Mexican style mains, there are some creative salad options as well as lots of choices for vegetarians including aubergine and butternut quesadillas.

    All in all this is a vibey spot, serving a better than expected Mexican fare in the heart of Green Point.

  3. Expert Review

    4.0 rating based on 1 rating
    Apr 2014 · Christine Bernard

    El Burro is probably one of the most popular Mexican restaurants in Cape Town and I heard their name constantly...

    El Burro is probably one of the most popular Mexican restaurants in Cape Town and I heard their name constantly through different social media platforms. I needed quite a large table for a joint birthday celebration for myself and my husband and I asked on Twitter if anybody had any suggestions. So many people suggested El Burro that I knew I had to go.

    I often worry with big tables. Often the waiter and the kitchen can’t keep great control over it and either the food comes out at all the wrong time or else something is forgotten completely. I was very impressed with how they handled our rather large and noisy crowd. Not one order was wrong and they remained friendly throughout.

    We, of course, started off with some cocktails. I tried the Orange Mint Margarita (Reposado tequila, fresh orange, fresh lime, fresh mint, orange zest, shaken and served on the rocks), followed by the Wild Berry and Basil Margarita (Wild berry, juice, fresh basil, tequila, dash of fresh lime, shaken and served on the rocks).

    Moving onto the food I had the Aubergine Quesadilla, which was a grilled flour tortilla filled with garlic chilli and coriander marinated aubergine and queso fresco served with roasted tomato salsa and a side of greens. I must say, it was delicious. It came with a lot of guacamole and cream of which I used every last bit. Absolutely delicious. The overall choice and winner throughout the table seemed to be the pulled beef which was part of the ‘build-your-own’ section. Here you are given a flour or corn tortilla with various salsas, avocado and cream and then you choose your own filling. Pulled pork was by far the winner, and after having a sneaky taste of my husbands I could understand why.

    It’s a great place if you are looking for something fun and vibrant. I would especially recommend it if you have a big group. Just remember to book because they are very popular.

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