EL TEJANO TEX-MEX
WHERE THE FUN IS TEXAS SIZE
Who doesn’t love a good happy hour? The drinks flow freely and the atmosphere is filled with fun, fun, fun. And it seems to me that El Tejano Tex-Mex is in perpetual happy hour mode as it’s just a fun place to eat, drink and be merry.
With locations in North Hollywood, Downtown Los Angeles and West Hollywood, they seem to have the L.A. basin covered when it comes to Tex-Mex, oversized fare and libations. From the folks behind Big Wangs, Tipsy Cow, and Thirsty Merchant, El Tejano is a place to revel.
At El Tejano, the aim is to be as big and bold as the great state of Texas itself. They serve Tex-Mex classics like grilled Mexican street corn; Frito pie; nine tacos in all shapes and sizes; burritos; enchiladas; a Southwest quinoa bowl; and even Texas Tater Tots—along with their beloved self-serve chips and salsa bar. Each location even has an outdoor fun zone to play games. And of course, there are TVs everywhere to watch any big game that’s going on.
There’s also an extensive craft, imported and domestic beer list and an extensive selection of tequilas, mezcals and specialty margaritas. There are house-made micheladas, tequila mules, and margarita varieties from the skinny (Flaca-rita) to the activist (Cesar Chavez…think spicy rita). The margaritas, which are served in an 18oz schooner just like the draft beers, come frozen, on the rocks or even with a beer in it. And every day (all day) is happy hour where you can make your second drink a “Texas-sized” cocktail for $2, while adding a shot to any beverage only costs $6.
During our recent visit to the WeHo El Tejano, we couldn’t help but feel like happy hour never stopped as the oversized drinks kept coming. You will definitely want to have a margarita or two, and cocktail-wise, the El Chapo with mezcal, pineapple, lime and agave is a good choice.
We started our happy feast with the Texas Nachos with black beans, Tejano cheese blend, guacamole, sour cream, pickled jalapeños and tomatoes. You can choose to top with chicken tinga, ground beef or carnitas or for $2 more make it carne asada. We chose carne asada.
And just because, I had to get the Frito pie, which is a mix of ground beef, cheddar cheese, sour cream and pico de gallo served in a Fritos’ bag. It’s gimmicky but it really hit the spot.
Be forewarned that the dishes, like the drinks, are oversized so the burrito should really be shared unless that’s all you’re going to eat. And all burritos come with rice and beans. Choose from chicken tinga; potato, fish; ground beef; plant based; carne asada; carnitas; shrimp or brisket. Make it a bowl, or wet for $2 more or make it a plate for $5.
You might think that ordering enchiladas wouldn’t be too much food but these are advertised as Texas sized enchiladas so they’re big too and they’re served with rice, beans and traditional red sauce. They’re a tasty handful.
I have to admit that I was surprised by El Tejano. I was fearing it would be a frat boy sports bar, which it can be, but it’s big enough to escape that scene if you want to. It’s great for day drinking and since happy hour never ends, it’s ideal for a boozy yet affordable good time.
El Tejano Tex-Mex is located in North Hollywood, Downtown Los Angeles, and West Hollywood. Hours vary per location. Open every day.
Story & Some Photography By: Jose Martinez
Photography Courtesy Of: El Tejano Tex-Mex