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120 Rivington St. (Essex St.) Send to Phone
A Mexican treasure on the Lower East Side.

Lunch & Dinner daily
  • Dress code: Casual

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THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED Festival Mexicano Restaurant Review

: In a quickly changing neighborhood like the Lower East Side, some places persist as go-to eateries for reliably good grub. Enter Festival Mexicano. The interior is Spartan, filled with glass tabletops and walls festooned with ads for Corona and Pacifico. Pay it no mind and instead focus on the food, far more worthy than the burrito joints and margarita palaces that pepper the rest of the area. Start with the beef nachos; instead of a heaping mass of chips and cheese, each chip is stacked with beans, cheese and picadillo (a mixture of beef and spices). Surprisingly, even the chicken soup, served with avocado in a spicy broth, passes muster, a fine combination of smooth and piquant flavors. Festival Mexicano isn’t about to challenge the orthodoxy of Mexican cuisine, so the expected items are on the menu, like moist soft-shell tacos filled with chicken, lamb or cecina, a type of salt-cured steak. Combination platters, one of the restaurant’s best values, come heaping with green enchiladas, chiles rellenos or other staples, and hover around the ten-dollar mark.
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