We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Want the lowest hotel prices? You're in the right place. We check 200+ sites for you.

El Charro Cafe - The Original

#14 of 1,547 Restaurants in Tucson
Certificate of Excellence
££ - £££
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Get directions
311 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701
+1 520-622-1922
11:00 - 21:00
Open now
See all hours
Sun - Thu 11:00 - 21:00
Fri - Sat 11:00 - 22:00
More Info
Add Photo Write a Review

1,696 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
  • More
Showing 1,673: English reviews
Sedona, Arizona
Level Contributor
24 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

Service was slow and my husbands food was served cold. Room is very loud and they add live music to that. Disappointed to say the least.

Thank dogmom19
Level Contributor
25 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

Met an old friend for lunch there. The food was excellent. You have to pay for parking in the area. Down the street is a market with old town artisans. The restaurant dates from 1922. Good food, decent portions.

Thank Rita F
New Mexico
Level Contributor
536 reviews
161 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 215 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

El Charro is considered downtown Tucson's iconic Mexican restaurant and while it's easy to see why, I think they've become a victim of their own success. We were 6 for lunch recently - had a reservation made the day before - and when we arrived, no sign of the reservation! The host was very harried and assured us we'd be... More 

1 Thank NewMexicoSilverqueen
Level Contributor
66 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

Great Mexican menu with many selections. I had a combo burrito and taco plate. It was fabulous, very hot (temperature) and great presentation. It was served with rice and a great sauce with medium spice. Large beer selection served very cold. Very ambient dining room decorated in true Mexican style. Service was outstanding. Definitely deserves a future visit.

Thank PCMenor
Lambertville, New Jersey
Level Contributor
433 reviews
239 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 182 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

We dined at El Charro on our first evening in Tucson and again as part of a Culinary Walking tour. It's an interesting place, with great traditional Mexican. For a first timer it can be a bit confusing. The restaurant is a Tucson mainstay located in an old house in downtown and as such the building layout is a bit... More 

1 Thank Heidi D
Level Contributor
29 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

I went here without a reservation on a night when there was a party of 100 folks so I had a looong wait and as I was alone the staff lost me, so it was even longer before I got seated. I was actually leaving and stopped by the outdoors matre'd's post to tell them to take my name off... More 

Thank Gaye E
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
152 reviews
83 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

While I was not floored by the food (I ate lunch there--a tamale and some other corn based cake). There was also a large and more extensive menu. El Charro appears to be a restaurant that has been there for a long time, in the older part of town. It also appears to have a loyal following and I can... More 

Thank syncomm1
Manhattan, Kansas
Level Contributor
25 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW via mobile

I ate in this restaurant a couple of years ago and thought it was wonderful. A few days ago I met friends in Tucson and when we were trying to decide where to eat I suggested El Charro. We went there and everyone enjoyed their food. The waiter was very helpful with suggestions. I definitely hope I have another opportunity... More 

Thank Carol R
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW via mobile

Checked this restaurant out for happy hour. I went to the original, which is in the central downtown part of Tucson. It is charmingly decorated in the traditional Mexican decor. They have a nice selection of nibbles, well priced, and the bar is cozy if one is alone. The margaritas are very good.

1 Thank irxprt
Vail, Arizona
Level Contributor
239 reviews
134 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Recently, visited the original El Charro downtown with a group of friends. We made reservations for our group of 14 on a very busy Friday evening. We arrived and they had a small room set aside for just our group. Service was excellent - our waiter quickly took our drink order and kept checking our drinks all evening. He took... More 

Thank VailAZTraveler

Travellers who viewed El Charro Cafe - The Original also viewed


Been to El Charro Cafe - The Original? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing
Improve this listing

Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    4 of 5 bubbles
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
    4 of 5 bubbles
Average prices
Mexican, Southwestern, Latin, Spanish, Gluten Free Options
Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, After-hours
Restaurant features
Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Seating, Waitstaff, Street Parking, Free Off-Street Parking, Wheelchair Accessible, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Discover
Good for
Kids, Child-friendly, Groups, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining
Open Hours
11:00 - 21:00
11:00 - 21:00
11:00 - 21:00
11:00 - 21:00
11:00 - 21:00
11:00 - 22:00
11:00 - 22:00
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 311 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701
  • Location: United States  >  Arizona (AZ)  >  Tucson
  • Phone Number: +1 520-622-1922
Established in 1922, El Charro Cafe of Tucson, Arizona is The Nation's Oldest Mexican Restaurant in continuous operation by the same family. Featuring traditional Northern Mexico-Sonoran style and innovative Tucson-style Mexican Food, El Charro Cafe is truly as Gourmet Magazine wrote: "A Taste Explosion".

We are innovators and originators and have proven this with our efforts in maintaining old world quality with new found concepts such as recipes lower in trans fat or designing dishes for those who need to dine gluten free!

Whatever your needs, El Charro Cafe and family are prepared to show you that; "We are not the best because we are the oldest, We are the oldest because WE ARE THE BEST!"

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of El Charro Cafe - The Original and other visitors
4 questions
Ask a question
Atlanta, Georgia
2 months ago
4 months ago
11 months ago
Tucson, Arizona
over a year ago

See all questions (4)

Questions? Get answers from El Charro Cafe - The Original staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?