Cactus Cantina
Here Tex-Mex means pitchers of swirly margaritas and huge servings of fajitas.
Reviewed By Thomas Head
Comments () | Published October 10, 2006
Cactus Cantina
Address: 3300 Wisconsin Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20016
Phone: 202-686-7222
Neighborhood: Upper Northwest, Cleveland Park
Cuisines: Tex-Mex, Mexican, Nuevo Latino, Breakfast
Opening Hours: Open Monday through Thursday 11 AM to 11 PM, Friday and Saturday 11 AM to midnight, and Sunday 10:30 AM to 3 PM. Brunch on Sunday 10:30 AM to 3 PM.
Nearby Metro Stops: Cleveland Park
Price Range: Inexpensive
Dress: Informal
Noise Level: Rowdy
Reservations: Not Accepted
Best Dishes Beef fajitas; grilled shrimp; grilled quail; grilled chicken breast; chiles rellenos; enchiladas; tacos al carbon; tamales.
Price Details: Appetizers, $3.50 to $9.95; entrees, $7.95 to $16.95.

From June 2005 Cheap Eats

The popular Cactus Cantina in Cleveland Park has the same ownership as its even more popular sister establishment, Lauriol Plaza near Dupont Circle, and a nearly identical menu. One reason for the restaurants' success is they just do things better than their Tex-Mex competition. It starts with the basket of warm, crisp tortilla chips and bowl of spicy salsa that immediately arrive at your table, a great accompaniment to the tart margaritas.

You can see what sets these restaurants apart if you order beef fajitas. Overcooked and dry at many places, here the beef is grilled over a mesquite fire and beautifully pink in the center. Grilled meat and seafood are a specialty here. Grilled shrimp are plump and perfectly cooked. Quails are marinated in herbs and emerge from the grill with a crisp skin and moist flesh. Even the often-abused chicken breast is moist and delicious. It's no wonder that on weekends, and often during the week, you're likely to have to wait for a table--but that's pleasant enough in the bar.
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Posted at 07:03 PM/ET, 10/10/2006 RSS | Print | Permalink | Washingtonian.com Restaurant Reviews