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“Reliable non-chain Mexican fare”

Cielito Lindo Mexican Restaurant
Price range: US$6 - US$15
Cuisines: Mexican
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Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Child-friendly
Dining options: Breakfast, Outdoor Seating
Reviewed 12 August 2012

First of all, keep your eyes open when you approach this place. I've been here several times, but I still passed it by when I went about a week ago. It's a small place with a modest sign out front.
I don't go here often, simply because it requires a trip across the river, and we all know how the James River is like the River Styx when it comes to those of us who live here. Nonetheless, it's worth the drive to me to get to a Mexican restaurant that is not a bland chain serving the same old thing.
When you get seated, you will get a basket of chips & salsa - no surprise there - but this place has a unique salsa (that I assume is house made) that has rich warm undertones. The menu has a very good varied selection, and they are also open for brunch. In addition to their regular menu items, there are always several daily specials of interest. I took a friend who grew up in California & has lived in the southwest, and he said it's the best Mexican restaurant he's been to in town as far as authentic cooking goes. The guacamole is homemade & chunky. They also make a very interesting & hearty soup with tiny meatballs & rice that I have not seen on any other menus.
The place is not large, but I have never seen it crowded; when the weather is pleasant, you may dine outside on the front deck. I have always had friendly, attentive service here, with beverages and chips & salsa refilled when needed. I wish they had one or two additional choices of hot sauce at each table, but I like things much spicier than most people. All in all, Cielito Lindo gets two thumbs up from me for having well prepared food that is a bit outside the usual for this area in a clean & cozy restaurant .

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2  Thank Bill H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (17)
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7 - 11 of 17 reviews

Reviewed 24 April 2012

I have been here several times as I do not live in Richmond but come once a year or so (last time was 2 years ago). Cielito Lindo never fails. Regardless of when I go there, a table is always free. The Margaritas are tops, their tap selection is above average. Go for any of the specials, I have tried 2 of the 4 listed, all were great.
Friends of ours that live close by always get the same thing because it tastes so good.
Friendly service, great service. I told the bar guy to have a beer ready when I finished my first, did not have to make a move, it was there after my last sip. We were in Richmond for a week, when it came to make a selection of where to eat on our last night, this was the first choice hands down.

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3  Thank TeeBow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 December 2011

Friendly service, tasteful Mexican menu using quality ingredients.

2  Thank papaperegrin0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2011

Moving from AZ to Richmond Va is a cultural experience! We have been seriously deprived of our Mexican food fix for almost a year, until we stumbled upon this tiny gem.

Tucked away in a mostly residential area, not even part of a strip mall, but the best and most authentic we have found this side of Las Tortugas in Memphis!

yummy...try it.

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1  Thank nigel'smom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 December 2010

Cielito Lindo serves the closest to authentic mexican cuisine that I have found. The food is flavorably seasoned and served up with a side order of Black Bean and Corn salad that is to die for. Prices in the evening start at $8.00 per entree with portions size to please all. The staff is not only attentive but also very friendly. A unique experience for those who want to get away from the typical mexican/american joint.

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2  Thank MayanCat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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