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El Ranchero

$$ - $$$
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4617 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22203-1520
+1 703-524-1010
17:00 - 22:00
Closed now
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Tue - Sun 17:00 - 22:00
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20 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
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Time of year
Showing 20: English reviews
Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
183 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 September 2016

There are several decent Tex-Mex or Latino restaurants in the Arlington area, and we've visited most of them. Having grown up in California and lived in Central America, I'm always interested in small family style places where the owners and staff are hospitable and the food is fun. The basic Tex-Mex in the U.S. is nothing like what is served... More 

Thank DrChipB
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 September 2016

This was hands down the worst Mexican food I have ever eaten. The chips and salsa weren't even palatable. I don't even know how that is possible. The margaritas are straight out of a bottle, I couldn't even move my seat back it was so cramped on the patio, and the service was awful. Should have looked at reviews before... More 

Thank zoeandcooper
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
23 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 January 2016 via mobile

Stopped in once, but never wanted to go back due to seriously uninspiring, overpriced food. Owners are bad neighbors and do not care about their basic civic responsibilities.

1 Thank Ipu-wer
Falls Church, Virginia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 January 2016

Years ago, El Ranchero was a gem in Arlington. Originally turned on to the restaurant by a group of Texans who said it was the most authentic in Northern Virginia. Unfortunately, that was years ago. On a recent visit, couldn't have been more disappointed. Tasted like canned and frozen ingredients. Periodically, we try the restaurant hoping for a return to... More 

1 Thank MichaelVirginia2015
Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
273 reviews
124 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 December 2015

We have been here in the past and enjoyed the food and service. Our most recent visit was really disappointing. The free chips were stale. I ordered the chicken chimichanga and got two, I guess chimichanga's, that were smaller than a typical size egg roll and appeared to be filled with beef. Every other Mexican restaurant we go to the... More 

1 Thank WA2DC
Canton, OH
Level Contributor
99 reviews
52 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 December 2015 via mobile

This restaurant sets just outside of the area of town with limited parking. Although small, they do offer a parking lot. The restaurant is small with a small bar in the entrance area. A few beers are offered on tap with a few more in bottles. They also serve a variety of margaritas. I had the Ranchero Salad with chicken.... More 

Thank Melody86
Level Contributor
36 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 October 2015 via mobile

The title says it all. We had a "Spotluck" app spin discount so, though we were the only diners, we gave it a try. The table chips and salsa were brought out about 15 mins after we were seated. The salsa was very vinegar-ish and watery; they could/ should have skipped it. The entree burrito was also soupy- but at... More 

1 Thank Momowow
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
778 reviews
508 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 225 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 April 2015

We were in the area on a Saturday and stopped for lunch because it appeared to be (and was) a local place and not any type of chain. Saturday lunch may not be the restaurant's best time. It wasn't crowded, and the kitchen was a bit off. Still, the waiter was jovial, and the food was okay. But a few... More 

Thank jxx9595
Appleton, WI
Level Contributor
21 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 August 2014

The decor is charmingly kitsch, the staff is genuinely helpful, and the tamales are homemade heaven.

Thank CarrieK72
Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
51 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 January 2014 credit card Amex Card Member Review

My wife and I decided to have dinner here after purchasing a LivingSocial deal online. We've driven past the place many times before, and have always been curious about the place. We both ordered the El Ranchero Special, and it was fantastic, truly-authentic home-style Mexican food! However, service was a little slow - we waited about 15 minutes to order... More 

Thank fotoflow

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    3 of 5 bubbles
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3 of 5 bubbles
    3 of 5 bubbles
Average prices
USD 10 - USD 20
Mexican, Latin
Lunch, Dinner
Restaurant features
Seating, Waitstaff, Takeout, Reservations
Good for
Open Hours
17:00 - 22:00
17:00 - 22:00
17:00 - 22:00
17:00 - 22:00
17:00 - 22:00
17:00 - 22:00
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 4617 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22203-1520
  • Location: United States  >  Virginia (VA)  >  Arlington
  • Phone Number: +1 703-524-1010

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from El Ranchero 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?