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Maracas: Disco Balls, Maracas, and Birthday Shots

I’ll admit it – I’m on a cheap Mexican kick. Wait, who am I kidding? I’m always on a cheap Mexican kick, and lucky for me, I’ve got Maracas, Caliente Cab Co, and Benny’s Burritos within 4 blocks of my apartment. Now, these places don’t serve good food; it’s certainly not authentic. Yet, as we all know, there’s nothing like a heaving toppling platter of cheese-smothered nachos and a craptastic dish of enchiladas to complement your happy hour margherita.

Maracas Mexican Bar & Grill on Greenwich Ave is about as much of a party as it’s name would suggest. The expansive restaurant features every single kitschy piece of decor you’d expect, and really, you’d want to see. We’re talking sombrero hats, disco balls, crepe paper, cactus pictures, cheap Mexican art, and a lot of primary color usage. Wooden painted tables stand helter-skelter, easily moveable to accommodate large groups. Outside, an impressive number of tables allow for al fresco ‘dining’ (read: drinking with snacks) when the weather’s nice.

Perhaps the most entertaining part of the ‘decor’ is the hilariously rowdy crowd. Midtown yuppies looking for happy hour downtown mingle with locals craving salted margheritas who mingle with a suspicious number of birthday girls and their posses. All are drunk or on their way, and friends are made easily.

Maracas does have food, and some of it is better than you would expect. For example, the freshly ground guacamole is surprisingly refreshing; the nachos are more than satisfying with an acceptable cheese-to-chip ratio; and the chorizo quesadillas bring together successfully the winning combo of sausage, melty cheese, and tortilla. However, despite  these high notes, most of the cuisine is exactly what you would expect from a cheesy margherita bar: over-cooked, Americanized to the point of being almost unrecognizeably Mexican, and made with low quality ingredients.

Maracas is your quintessential crappy Mexican go-to; it’s a rollickin’ good time with cheap and strong drinks (could you even think of getting something other than a margherita?) and filling serviceable food. And just trust me on this one, you’ll want to tell them it’s your birthday…

Perfect For: celebrations, margherita mondays, pig-out sessions, guacamole cravings, ladies night out, large group dinners

Maracas Mexican Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

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