Best "standard" Mexican food in Charleston, hands down. The vegetables and meat seem MUCH more fresh than at La Ha, Senor Tequila, etc. Awesome salsa and MUCH friendlier service than any of these places, as well.
Zia's is amazing! They often have the pollo verde on special and it is basically shredded, amazingly flavored chicken with I believe a tomatillo sauce. Their margaritas are an exceptional value and they use fresh lime juice. Also, their salsa is the best I have ever had in a restaurant. Just the right amount of spice.... I think I may go there for dinner tonight!
I'm back again just making sure I start this New Year off right; I just posted a comment about this little gem of an eatery and somehow forgot to give it the FIVE STAR review it deserves.
So, I just DID give it five stars. If you haven't tried it, you're definitely missing out... and they even have live music by Dangermuffin on Wednesday evenings sometimes... so radddd!
Jadegirl (A.K.A. Greenway Studio)
Have no idea what the other two reviewers are talking about. The food is GREAT and the staff is very friendly and helpful. The portions are generous. This place is definitely worth the 25 minute drive from downtown any day.
This is a really cool spot! My husband and I are now regulars. We have tried almost everything on the menu and are thouroughly satisfied. Things are definately different from your typical Mexican restaurants so don't bring your preconcieved notions about what you think it should be. Instead, be open to trying some great quality, creative food.
Loved it! After spending half the day in the water boogie boarding with the family, we made out way to The Taco Boy. Service was great and so was the food!
Anyone that is local, or loves Mexican, knows that Santi's is the Shiz. The wait staff never gets it wrong, they are seriously good at what they do. Very friendly, attentive, etc. The drinks are SERIOUSLY awesome. KILLER chips and salsa, for real.
Always a good time.
BUT: Beware when ordering to go. Not recommended for Santi's. They do not pack stuff correctly, and it somehow doesnt make it to the other end...but that is Mexican..its hard to keep hot and fresh and not messy.
Anyway, back to how yummy it is.
WAYYYYYY better than Taco Boy!! Not even close really, and those who are local and really know, know.
There was a terrible shortage of great Mexican fare in Charelston until Caliente came to town. My wife and I love this place and have probably been 4-5 times since it opened a bit over a month ago. I'd already placed a great review for Caliente but I see it was removed?
Anyway, where else are you going to get a beef brisket chimichonga with chipotle sour cream? I love the puffy tacos and at this point I've had just about everything on the menu and it has all been consistently great. These folks are working hard and even though they are new, they are providing a great experience.
I don't know about you, but I go to a restaurant for the food, not the drinks and if you are complaining for paying an arm and a leg for alcohol then pre-game before you go out. This is a boutique eating establishment, not a hole in the wall bar. And you won't find Mexican this good at this price anywhere else.
Adam M. (don't delete me please, I have no affiliation with Caliente other than the fact that I love Mexican food)
the taco spot is AWESOME. Such a great hole in the wall, nothing on the menu over $6.99. Blackened chicken tacos are my fav, and burritos are big and delicious. This is a great local business trying hard to make it happen.
Five stars! Great food!
You'll lick your eyebrows !
Always delicious, cheap food... get the twice baked potato cake as your side...
Great food. Weekdays they have a super lunch buffet from 11 to 2:30 for less than $6 and a nice salad bar included. you will get fat ! :-)
Anything you wait to eat gets soggy, so I don't think that's a fair critique of the Taco Spot considering it was your fault for waiting to eat. The tortillas certainly are not soggy when they are served. the Taco Spot has great vegetarian options. The Spicy Ginger is the best vegetarian wrap I've had in years. Also, the Veg taco on a crunchy corn shell is THE BEST. I also love black bean quesadillas. VERY vegetarian friendly. I love the blackened chicken taco on soft flour. So so so good.
Jessica, I respectfully suggest you give Zia another try. When you actually cook your own chips, sometimes they do get oily/retain oil...that doesn't make them "stale". If you get a "bad" batch, nut up and ask for some more. I also respectfully suggest you re-examine the salsa, which, under any circumstances during my dozens of times happily consuming it, could never be described as "ketchup-y".
Zia is among the very best Mexican/southwest fare in Charleston, and it's one of the things I really miss since I moved to Mt. P.
The previous poster has done nothing but complain about Charleston restaurants since moving here...take it with a grain of salt. I've been to Zia numerous times and have always had great experiences with the food and the service. Zia and Santi are the closest to authentic as it gets. Real foodies order guacamole (made to order) anyway...
If you love meat cook on a grill this is the place to eat. the chicken and ribs marinated and seasoned and oh so good. Pollo also has fried plantains cooked brown and caramelized with a little crunch, there is also yucca, tostones, black beans and rice. They serve some latin standards like tacos,quesadillas as well as a spicy/fruity shrimp tropical. I have tried the other things but the big bang is the grilled chicken go ahead and order a whole bird so you can take some home. I have used ,my leftovers in quesadillas, soup, pot pie... I could go on about how great this place is but you should try it yourself. During the day you can watch the latin soap opera's with the local latin population or in the evening's they play salsa music. Don't forget to order a mango drink to wash it all down with! Go Now!!
Love this place, a little on the expensive side but still fantastic. Make sure you get the salsa sampler
I've eaten here twice and I've had fantastic meals and attentive servers. The chips are fresh and light, and the salsa is unique and smokey. The traditional guacamole was creamy and comforting. The sopa de lima is one of the best soups I've ever had: what a fantastic medley of flavors. The quesadillas are crisp and not overly cheesy. The sirloin tacos have a fantastic sweet-sour flavor.
That is the biggest best burrito I have ever had. I am addicted
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