555 W National Rd
Englewood, OH 45322
A bit off the beaten path in Dayton’s north thoroughfare, El Cazador in Englewood Is a Tex-Mex house set up for large groups of people to enjoy some good Spanish inspired cuisine. The servings are hearty, the food is inexpensive, and the spot really brings a lot simple food to the table with an overall pleasant service. That said I found the food to be pretty uninspiring.
The menu is Prototypical Tex-Mex, heavy with burritos, tacos, enchiladas, and various iterations of other things you can eat with meat and tortilla. Try to couple different things, the enchiladas were particularly good, that savory tomato sauce to top them really goes far, though I felt like the enchilada could really use some extra cheese. I have the opposite problem for the simple burrito which is heavy with meat, but could use a couple of vegetables, maybe a little bit more cheese, or something. The tamales are simple enough, but the ingredients kind of taste like they came out of the box. This also is good, though it’s a little bit watery and I would prefer if it had a little bit more spice to it or some heat to enhance it.
The interior of the restaurant is spacious, this place is definitely built to cater to groups. They get that food out really quickly, too, which is a testament to efficient service. But the experience remains pretty bland to me; the food is heavy on meat in some places, heavy on cheese in other places, but overall it needs some more seasoning, needs some cilantro, spices, or something else. Great Tex-Mex is built not on meat and cheese but on those great spices that really give the food a distinct, ethnic flavor.
That said the price points are great, and the restaurant is going to continue on with that local appeal from Dayton residents who are looking for somewhere convenient to enjoy some Tex-Mex. But with the Dayton market full of Tex-Mex options, many others in the city carve out a good niche with salsa, spices or fresh ingredients. This spot offers convenience and it offers inexpensive food but I don’t think it really brings anything inspiring to the table that is worth a special trip.
- The lunch options here are very inexpensive, definitely catered to convenience among the local neighborhoods.
- There are some good drink specials also for happy hour.
- The spot seems to specialize in groups. Food comes pretty fast, too.