The 2009 Philly Mag 50: Restaurants 26 to 50

47. El Vez
47. El Vez
Center City | Mexican | Entrées: $21-$30
Last Year’s Ranking: 35

El Vez always catches us by surprise: The funhouse and drinkery can turn out complex and polished food. We just wish it would be more consistent, so that the creamy open-face shrimp quesadilla, the many gaucamole options, the sweet-corn, lobster and crab enchiladas and the well-charred, meant-for-sharing tacos al carbon were as good as we know they can be, each and every time. No matter; the crowd-­friendly, just-­different-enough dishes (that are composed with care) and always-a-party vibe make every visit satisfying. Order: The tacos for two—the sizzling table-top grill they arrive on makes for a lot of drama, and a whole lot of food. 121 South 13th Street, 215-928-9800.

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