Lower East Side is definitely not limited when it comes to restaurants, but finding something affordable, fun, and perfect for those big group dinners can be a tough endeavor. You really have to do your homework, and maneuver your way through the duds to find one that satisfies both your needs and your stomach. As my friend planned her birthday dinner, I helped her do the dirty work. She requested Mexican, fun, suitable for big groups, takes reservations, and delicious. Together we found Macondo and the rest was history.

Located at 157 e. Houston street, Macondo brings Latino Street food to the gourmet level with a menu offering unique tapas style dishes ranging from crabmeat guacamole to tacos and more. The menu is pretty easy to understand, but the kind servers will familiarize you with any Latin items you’ve never heard of.

Fun & Festive at Macondo

A fun atmosphere is incomplete without decked out décor and Macondo doesn’t fail on this front. Think Latin flavored Tiki hut and it won’t disappoint, I promise. The art on the walls is fun and festive, and the seating is made for large groups and couples alike, making this spot ideal for a girls night out or a fun date night before you hit the Lower East bars.

Let’s talk food(and drinks). As it was a birthday dinner, aka a large group ready for a good time, we started with carafes of the red and white sangria, and moved onto cocktails later in the evening. They have the classics like mojitos and caiprihanas, if you want to stick to what you know, but I’d recommend venturing out of the box and trying the mango + gin, for a sweet and tropical take on the original.

The crab meat guacamole was highly recommended, so we went with a few orders of this for the table, as well as the original. Safe to say the crab meat was the real winner. I wasn’t sure if I’d be a fan of this strange hybrid, but heartiness and flavor of the crab was the perfect addition to guac. After filling up on chips, lacking the self control we so wish we had, we were happy that the rest of the menu was tapas style, which allowed us to try a bit of everything and not feel too over stuffed by the smaller portions. Most of us went with fish tacos, which come with two. The fish and the roasted lamb barbacoa were the two most favored of the night. Another favorite was the queso fondido, which basically is a large skillet of melted cheese that comes with a side of fresh tortillas that allow you to make your own cheese stuffed creation. It’s a no brainer that this was devoured quickly. I’d also highly recommend the Brussels to share with the table, or eat all to yourself, no judgment. Post demolishing our meal, a slice of Tres Leches was the perfect sweet ending to a delicious meal and a chance for the birthday girl to make a wish!

Macondo is not just perfect for dinner! They serve an awesome brunch on the weekend. Every Saturday and Sunday, Macondo invites you to join them for brunch accompanied by three exotic mimosa options. Order your entrée and one mimosa, and you’re free to drink as much as you desire, no extra fee! Served from 11am to 4pm. And during the week, if you can get here on the earlier side, they serve an awesome happy hour from 5-7pm Monday through Friday, featuring $5 tapas and sangria, and $7 cocktails. You don’t want to miss out on this fun.

Macondo Taperia – Website
157 E. Houston St.
(between Allen and Eldridge)

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About The Author

Healthy Eater

Southern girl at heart, minus the fried food. Fresh on the NY food scene, hungry for a healthy way to live in this food capital.