Mama's Cantina

★★★☆☆
Family-owned since 1974, this is Seattle's oldest Mexican restaurant.
  • 2234 2nd Ave

    Seattle, WA 98121

    Map & Directions
  • 206-728-6262

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.

finally ate here after hearing how great it was. bland at best. service not that great and don't plan on going back. the Elvis room is cool.

2
★★☆☆☆

finally ate here after hearing how great it was. bland at best. service not that great and don't plan on going back. the Elvis room is cool.

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.

Taco Tuesday is the best deal in town! They have consistently good food with an eclectic atmosphere. There food is very authentic and the chips and salsa are the best in town!

5
★★★★★

Taco Tuesday is the best deal in town! They have consistently good food with an eclectic atmosphere. There food is very authentic and the chips and salsa are the best in town!

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.

I love this place. The food is always excellent. I love the way they prepare their beans, it is almost like they are put in the oven for a few minutes under the broiler with cheese on top so that it gets hot and almost toasty.

The tamales are my favorite item. This place is my first choice for Mexican food in Seattle.

4
★★★★☆

I love this place. The food is always excellent. I love the way they prepare their beans, it is almost like they are put in the oven for a few minutes under the broiler with cheese on top so that it gets hot and almost toasty.

The tamales are my favorite item. This place is my first choice for Mexican food in Seattle.

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.

My husband and I have worked in the restaurant business our entire adult lives. We have both been to Mama's before, food good, atmosphere fun, service good *once* the other times mediocre. But the place is fun, the food is decent and cheap enough, and who doesn't like Mexican. We will NEVER set foot in this place again. Went there on Valentine's day (just wanted a relaxing simple evening). Our female server (dark hair, 20s-30s, hat, tattooed) obviously hated that both she and we were there. Rude from the get-go, every word coming out of her mouth dripping with snide sarcasm. We were still friendly and tried to lighten up the conversation, knowing what it is like to wait tables and thinking she might just be having a bad day. My husband ordered a beer and a shot, I ordered a top shelf margarita. 5 minutes later she slams his beer on the table (bottle, no glass). ONLY his beer. We watch her to bring out one thing at a time for each table, moving as slow as humanly possible. She has been sat a 10 top that is sitting behind us. FIFTEEN minutes after she has dropped the beer (yes we have been there 20 minutes, and no this is not an exaggeration, I had looked at the time as soon as we sat down and again when we left), still no other drinks nor has she returned at all to our table...and now she is walking over to the 10 top (who has been sitting there for 10+ minutes) to take their order. We got up and walked out. That woman should not be doing any line of work that involves interacting with other human beings. When I went into work the next day (yes I am telling anyone and everyone this story) at the restaurant that I work at, one of my co-workers relayed a similar story and described a server that sounded just like ours and who had also been totally rude. That Mama's seems to pride itself on employing people like this is a shame. We will never set foot in that place again and will tell everyone to avoid this place like the plague. Unless you like giving your money away and having a crappy time. Btw, YAY for the Matador in Ballard where we went after we left that had the BEST food, atmosphere and service.

0
★☆☆☆☆

My husband and I have worked in the restaurant business our entire adult lives. We have both been to Mama's before, food good, atmosphere fun, service good *once* the other times mediocre. But the place is fun, the food is decent and cheap enough, and who doesn't like Mexican. We will NEVER set foot in this place again. Went there on Valentine's day (just wanted a relaxing simple evening). Our female server (dark hair, 20s-30s, hat, tattooed) obviously hated that both she and we were there. Rude from the get-go, every word coming out of her mouth dripping with snide sarcasm. We were still friendly and tried to lighten up the conversation, knowing what it is like to wait tables and thinking she might just be having a bad day. My husband ordered a beer and a shot, I ordered a top shelf margarita. 5 minutes later she slams his beer on the table (bottle, no glass). ONLY his beer. We watch her to bring out one thing at a time for each table, moving as slow as humanly possible. She has been sat a 10 top that is sitting behind us. FIFTEEN minutes after she has dropped the beer (yes we have been there 20 minutes, and no this is not an exaggeration, I had looked at the time as soon as we sat down and again when we left), still no other drinks nor has she returned at all to our table...and now she is walking over to the 10 top (who has been sitting there for 10+ minutes) to take their order. We got up and walked out. That woman should not be doing any line of work that involves interacting with other human beings. When I went into work the next day (yes I am telling anyone and everyone this story) at the restaurant that I work at, one of my co-workers relayed a similar story and described a server that sounded just like ours and who had also been totally rude. That Mama's seems to pride itself on employing people like this is a shame. We will never set foot in that place again and will tell everyone to avoid this place like the plague. Unless you like giving your money away and having a crappy time. Btw, YAY for the Matador in Ballard where we went after we left that had the BEST food, atmosphere and service.

Pros: atmosphere, location

Cons: see below

.

When in Belltown and ready for some nourishment I run on auto pilot and take myself to Mama??s to fill my empty belly! Clientele ranges from families to hipsters. Dcor is funky and fun. Enjoy your food in the Elvis room or on their patio on a sunny Seattle day. On to the food?the reason you come here! With portions like this you will NOT be leaving hungry and because it is oh so good you WILL eat it all. Your delicious bean & cheese will be lonely by itself so make sure to pair it with a margarita or a shot of tequila & a beer. Voila! The perfect meal.

2
★★★★★

When in Belltown and ready for some nourishment I run on auto pilot and take myself to Mama??s to fill my empty belly! Clientele ranges from families to hipsters. Dcor is funky and fun. Enjoy your food in the Elvis room or on their patio on a sunny Seattle day. On to the food?the reason you come here! With portions like this you will NOT be leaving hungry and because it is oh so good you WILL eat it all. Your delicious bean & cheese will be lonely by itself so make sure to pair it with a margarita or a shot of tequila & a beer. Voila! The perfect meal.

Pros: the food, Bella the server, margaritas, vegetarian options

Cons: It gets busy and sometimes the wait for a table can be long

.

This is the closest thing to authentic mexican in downtown/belltown area of Seattle

2
★★★★☆

This is the closest thing to authentic mexican in downtown/belltown area of Seattle

Pros: tasty carnitas and margaritas

Cons: none

.

Besides the huge plates of undeniably tasty food and stiff drinks, this place gets it when it comes to making you feel good and letting you have a good time. The walls floors and tables are simply jampacked with all kinds of kitschy coolness. Of course there's the Elvis room where we had a birthday dinner for my Dad last September. The staff are my kind of people. Youthful and humorous and trying to rock through the night as well as can be done. If you want a corporate style prerehearsed dialog along with dinner then you aren't going to find it here. Five stars from this happy, stuffed, and a bit tipsy fan.

2
★★★★★

Besides the huge plates of undeniably tasty food and stiff drinks, this place gets it when it comes to making you feel good and letting you have a good time. The walls floors and tables are simply jampacked with all kinds of kitschy coolness. Of course there's the Elvis room where we had a birthday dinner for my Dad last September. The staff are my kind of people. Youthful and humorous and trying to rock through the night as well as can be done. If you want a corporate style prerehearsed dialog along with dinner then you aren't going to find it here. Five stars from this happy, stuffed, and a bit tipsy fan.

Pros: Lots of tasty food and booze. Great people all around you.

Cons: Can't think of any. Really I can't.

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I've loved this place for years. In fact, just writing this review is making me hungry for the food! If you're wondering where to go out to tonight, you can't go wrong here

2
★★★★★

I've loved this place for years. In fact, just writing this review is making me hungry for the food! If you're wondering where to go out to tonight, you can't go wrong here

Pros: great atmosphere, fantastic food, large portions

Cons: none

.

I've been here a couple of times. The food is always consistently awesome! Great Salsa. The BEST tamales! Service is fast. There's usually a wait, but the tables move quick. I've never had to wait more than 15 minutes. Go!!!

5
★★★★★

I've been here a couple of times. The food is always consistently awesome! Great Salsa. The BEST tamales! Service is fast. There's usually a wait, but the tables move quick. I've never had to wait more than 15 minutes. Go!!!

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.

I've been here before and to be honest, only put up with the terrible service cause I really do enjoy the food, but tonight was the last straw.

Our waitress seemed cold and despondent, as did most of the other wait staff. I placed an order for a margarita, and apparently she said she'd be back to check my ID, but I didn't hear this. When she came back she got short with me because I didn't have my ID out. I apologized and quickly got it out, but before I could even hand it to her she walked away from our table. She ended up coming back and checking it. During this time however, my water cup had been empty and not once did she offer to fill it. Those chips they give you make you really thirsty! and it wasn't until after she brought me my margarita that she finally filled my water. And all I could think was "Gee, thanks"

When we were ready to leave my four friends and I had to split the check. There was a line around the register that we weren't really sure where it began. We decided that two of us would wait in line while the other two waited outside. As I'm waiting in line with the rest of the small crowd of people I was trying to do my best to stay out of the staff's way since we were standing in the way of a kitchen entrance. And that's when one of the staff walked past my friend and I and very rudely said "Standing there isn't such a great idea". As if we had much of a choice! I thought it was completely disrespectful and was really offended by this and rather than cause a scene when they were so busy I decided what I really wanted was just to pay and get the hell out of there and never come back.

When they get a better staff maybe I'll come back. Until then, I'm done.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I've been here before and to be honest, only put up with the terrible service cause I really do enjoy the food, but tonight was the last straw.

Our waitress seemed cold and despondent, as did most of the other wait staff. I placed an order for a margarita, and apparently she said she'd be back to check my ID, but I didn't hear this. When she came back she got short with me because I didn't have my ID out. I apologized and quickly got it out, but before I could even hand it to her she walked away from our table. She ended up coming back and checking it. During this time however, my water cup had been empty and not once did she offer to fill it. Those chips they give you make you really thirsty! and it wasn't until after she brought me my margarita that she finally filled my water. And all I could think was "Gee, thanks"

When we were ready to leave my four friends and I had to split the check. There was a line around the register that we weren't really sure where it began. We decided that two of us would wait in line while the other two waited outside. As I'm waiting in line with the rest of the small crowd of people I was trying to do my best to stay out of the staff's way since we were standing in the way of a kitchen entrance. And that's when one of the staff walked past my friend and I and very rudely said "Standing there isn't such a great idea". As if we had much of a choice! I thought it was completely disrespectful and was really offended by this and rather than cause a scene when they were so busy I decided what I really wanted was just to pay and get the hell out of there and never come back.

When they get a better staff maybe I'll come back. Until then, I'm done.

Pros: decent food

Cons: rude wait staff, poor customer service

.

I've been to Mama's many times and have always been underwhelmed. The environment is cool, but the food is just so blah. So, if you don't mind blah food and just want a typically Seattle "cool" place to eat, go.

1
★★☆☆☆

I've been to Mama's many times and have always been underwhelmed. The environment is cool, but the food is just so blah. So, if you don't mind blah food and just want a typically Seattle "cool" place to eat, go.

Pros: ambience is cool

Cons: the food is so not good

.

I have worked in the restaurant industry. I ask that my food is tasty, my service adequate, and that the food is priced based on its quality and portion size. I have no problem eating at a truck stop. Nor do I mind paying extra for higher quality food or larger portions.
Service: We were seated in the Elvis Room, but were asked to move because of a forgotten reservation. When we placed our orders my husband mentioned we would prefer to split the check. Service was slow. My friend asked for salsa multiple times. Drink refills were a wait. Coffee was never refilled. The check was not split up and added 18% gratuity for a group of 6 (most restaurants parties of 8+), and she'd MISCALCULATED our total, EXTRA $10 to her gratuity! She returned with a pen and paper so we could split the check ourselves! Handwriting was tough to read and she'd scribbled the order all over the ticket. She had the nerve to mention she had given us the happy hour prices on our drinks (even though she wasn't sure about the time). What!?! We got there at 5:30pm and happy hour ends at 6:30pm. Our drinks were ordered in time. We were still there because of slow service, not order time!
Value: I paid $6 for a small weak strawberry margarita, 1 enchilada with beans and rice was almost $10, tiny portion and looked like a kid meal. I would have gotten 2 quality enchiladas for the same at Azteca. Salsa is extra. The menu on their website is NOT up to date. Prices were higher.
Food: The quality was low. My beans had chunks of burned cheese. Made me wonder if they reused cookware without washing thoroughly because the cheese on my enchilada was not burned at all. The beef in the enchilada was alright, but not much flavor. Stale chips.
Location: Little parking. We noticed a disproportionate number of creepy homeless guys. Area seemed sketchier than I remembered. While we ate we watched three squad cars responding to an incident across the street and a police officer pulling contraband from a man's pockets. There was a homeless guy shouting unintelligibly in front of the restaurant's entrance when we walked in, not a place to walk alone.
Conclusion: I must assume that this was once a better restaurant. They have many positive reviews and have apparently won local awards. That said, it is currently a mismanaged establishment lacking in service and food quality, charging a higher price than other Mexican restaurants in the area.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I have worked in the restaurant industry. I ask that my food is tasty, my service adequate, and that the food is priced based on its quality and portion size. I have no problem eating at a truck stop. Nor do I mind paying extra for higher quality food or larger portions.
Service: We were seated in the Elvis Room, but were asked to move because of a forgotten reservation. When we placed our orders my husband mentioned we would prefer to split the check. Service was slow. My friend asked for salsa multiple times. Drink refills were a wait. Coffee was never refilled. The check was not split up and added 18% gratuity for a group of 6 (most restaurants parties of 8+), and she'd MISCALCULATED our total, EXTRA $10 to her gratuity! She returned with a pen and paper so we could split the check ourselves! Handwriting was tough to read and she'd scribbled the order all over the ticket. She had the nerve to mention she had given us the happy hour prices on our drinks (even though she wasn't sure about the time). What!?! We got there at 5:30pm and happy hour ends at 6:30pm. Our drinks were ordered in time. We were still there because of slow service, not order time!
Value: I paid $6 for a small weak strawberry margarita, 1 enchilada with beans and rice was almost $10, tiny portion and looked like a kid meal. I would have gotten 2 quality enchiladas for the same at Azteca. Salsa is extra. The menu on their website is NOT up to date. Prices were higher.
Food: The quality was low. My beans had chunks of burned cheese. Made me wonder if they reused cookware without washing thoroughly because the cheese on my enchilada was not burned at all. The beef in the enchilada was alright, but not much flavor. Stale chips.
Location: Little parking. We noticed a disproportionate number of creepy homeless guys. Area seemed sketchier than I remembered. While we ate we watched three squad cars responding to an incident across the street and a police officer pulling contraband from a man's pockets. There was a homeless guy shouting unintelligibly in front of the restaurant's entrance when we walked in, not a place to walk alone.
Conclusion: I must assume that this was once a better restaurant. They have many positive reviews and have apparently won local awards. That said, it is currently a mismanaged establishment lacking in service and food quality, charging a higher price than other Mexican restaurants in the area.

Pros: Close to the Crocodile Cafe

Cons: Bad Service, Poor Food Quality at Higher Price

.

Yes, it's not "real" Mexican - who cares? If you want real Mexican go back to LA/Phoenix. Mama's is great. And, yes, I do know what "real" Mexican tastes like and I still love Mama's and I love the spotty service and no one is better than Bella. Mama's is "real" Seattle and I hope it stays that way.

2
★★★★★

Yes, it's not "real" Mexican - who cares? If you want real Mexican go back to LA/Phoenix. Mama's is great. And, yes, I do know what "real" Mexican tastes like and I still love Mama's and I love the spotty service and no one is better than Bella. Mama's is "real" Seattle and I hope it stays that way.

Pros: Great ambiance, good is good, even though it's not authentic, service is, well, Mama's service and I like it

Cons: None

.

Been there 3-4 times a year for 35 years. Food is always great. Lost some charm now that the water glasses match. Summer dining by the sidewalk is good entertainment watching the locals.

4
★★★★☆

Been there 3-4 times a year for 35 years. Food is always great. Lost some charm now that the water glasses match. Summer dining by the sidewalk is good entertainment watching the locals.

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.

I am not a big fan of Mexican food, but I really enjoyed myself at this restaurant. The food was good and you received a lot of food for your money. The staff was exceptionally nice and friendly.

4
★★★★☆

I am not a big fan of Mexican food, but I really enjoyed myself at this restaurant. The food was good and you received a lot of food for your money. The staff was exceptionally nice and friendly.

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My husband and I met his children here for lunch today and the service and food was so bad, that I felt compelled to write a review immediately so that some other poor suckers would save themselves the misery of a meal here. I'm not snotty or snooty and don't care about the decor in a restaurant, but I do expect decent food and service. This was beyond bad.

We were seated in the Elvis Room (there were 7 of us) and were promptly forgotten about. Finally, one person had to leave our table to hunt down a staff person, who said "Oh, I didn't know anyone was in here". Okay, so we ordered beers and nachos while we decided on what to eat. It took at least 15-20 minutes before our waiter came back with the beer and nachos (hello? couldn't we have our beers while waiting on the nachos?) and it was the wrong type of beer and we were shorted a glass. Our waiter then asked to take our orders and when my husband told me to go ahead and order out of courtesy, the waiter said "Okay I have to leave for 2-3 minutes to check on my other tables if you are not ready to order." What? We politely told him that we were ready and everyone ordered quickly.

The best meal of the table was bland slop. The worst, which was mine, a fish taco (and he forgot the rice and beans that were supposed to come with it) was inedible. I took one bite and that was it. It was fishy, cold and covered in some kind of mayo sauce. Someone else got the chicken sope which was like a hockey puck. The waiter NEVER came back: we ran out of water, I wanted to order something to replace the food I could not eat, and he never brought the extra salsa we asked for. Nothing, nada. We figured that since we were a large group they were tacking on the gratuity and he didn't care.

This place is seriously bad. As we were leaving, I felt like standing on the corner and warning anyone who might be going in. I'm not kidding, this was the worst meal I've had in years.

0
★☆☆☆☆

My husband and I met his children here for lunch today and the service and food was so bad, that I felt compelled to write a review immediately so that some other poor suckers would save themselves the misery of a meal here. I'm not snotty or snooty and don't care about the decor in a restaurant, but I do expect decent food and service. This was beyond bad.

We were seated in the Elvis Room (there were 7 of us) and were promptly forgotten about. Finally, one person had to leave our table to hunt down a staff person, who said "Oh, I didn't know anyone was in here". Okay, so we ordered beers and nachos while we decided on what to eat. It took at least 15-20 minutes before our waiter came back with the beer and nachos (hello? couldn't we have our beers while waiting on the nachos?) and it was the wrong type of beer and we were shorted a glass. Our waiter then asked to take our orders and when my husband told me to go ahead and order out of courtesy, the waiter said "Okay I have to leave for 2-3 minutes to check on my other tables if you are not ready to order." What? We politely told him that we were ready and everyone ordered quickly.

The best meal of the table was bland slop. The worst, which was mine, a fish taco (and he forgot the rice and beans that were supposed to come with it) was inedible. I took one bite and that was it. It was fishy, cold and covered in some kind of mayo sauce. Someone else got the chicken sope which was like a hockey puck. The waiter NEVER came back: we ran out of water, I wanted to order something to replace the food I could not eat, and he never brought the extra salsa we asked for. Nothing, nada. We figured that since we were a large group they were tacking on the gratuity and he didn't care.

This place is seriously bad. As we were leaving, I felt like standing on the corner and warning anyone who might be going in. I'm not kidding, this was the worst meal I've had in years.

Pros: Not one

Cons: Everything you go to a restaurant for is wrong here.

.

We went to Mama's while vacationing in Seattle. We went on a Monday night and had to wait a few minutes for a table, but it was worth it. We had water and chips & salsa at our table as we were sitting. The chips keep coming, but try to limit yourself as the portions are huge. We had chicken fajitas, beef burritos, and a beef taco. The fajitas were great, real good juicy, flavorful chicken. The beef in the burrito and taco was good, just a bit dry (it's more of a shredded beef style). Service was great. I would recommend.

2
★★★★★

We went to Mama's while vacationing in Seattle. We went on a Monday night and had to wait a few minutes for a table, but it was worth it. We had water and chips & salsa at our table as we were sitting. The chips keep coming, but try to limit yourself as the portions are huge. We had chicken fajitas, beef burritos, and a beef taco. The fajitas were great, real good juicy, flavorful chicken. The beef in the burrito and taco was good, just a bit dry (it's more of a shredded beef style). Service was great. I would recommend.

Pros: relaxed atmosphere, good food

.

This place, like many so-called Mexican restaurants in Seattle, just wasn't good. The salsa was like pace picante and the enchilada's I had tasted funny.

2
★★☆☆☆

This place, like many so-called Mexican restaurants in Seattle, just wasn't good. The salsa was like pace picante and the enchilada's I had tasted funny.

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.

I've been going to Mama's since I was 16, but most of my Mama's time was when I was in Seattle in the early 1990s, and Belltown was seedy-hip. Now it's condo-land, but Mama's hasn't changed. Ate there twice on my last trip to Seattle--best thing there is the Chicken Tacos, with the homemade tortillas and the amazingly yummy guac--the first night our server suggested squeezing lime on the taco before the hot sauce, and it was really great. Second night we had the sweetest server, and one of the most beautiful people I've ever seen, as our server, and she was really great. Service here can be a bit indifferent sometimes, but most of the time it's friendly and really quick. Only regret--too cold and rainy (April) to sit outside.

Many of my friends order the screamers, and on night 2 my friend ordered the black bean and spinach quesadilla, which looked really good, . Yummy maragaritas too, and, for post dinner lounging, there are fun bars along 2nd Ave. Oh, and get the Elvis room if you can. Very fun.

2
★★★★★

I've been going to Mama's since I was 16, but most of my Mama's time was when I was in Seattle in the early 1990s, and Belltown was seedy-hip. Now it's condo-land, but Mama's hasn't changed. Ate there twice on my last trip to Seattle--best thing there is the Chicken Tacos, with the homemade tortillas and the amazingly yummy guac--the first night our server suggested squeezing lime on the taco before the hot sauce, and it was really great. Second night we had the sweetest server, and one of the most beautiful people I've ever seen, as our server, and she was really great. Service here can be a bit indifferent sometimes, but most of the time it's friendly and really quick. Only regret--too cold and rainy (April) to sit outside.

Many of my friends order the screamers, and on night 2 my friend ordered the black bean and spinach quesadilla, which looked really good, . Yummy maragaritas too, and, for post dinner lounging, there are fun bars along 2nd Ave. Oh, and get the Elvis room if you can. Very fun.

Pros: Fun staff, friendly service, good food, bizzare-fun decor, great location

Cons: Parking is terrible in Belltown these days--take the bus, or find a cheap pay lot nearby.

.

How interesting to see all of the different reviews. I LOVE MAMA'S. I can't think of anything that needs improvement at this funky little place. My absolute favorite is the Nolasco chicken burrito, but I sub enchilada sauce for the ranchero sauce. YUM! We no longer live in Seattle but I make it back to Mama's every trip back home. The staff is always awesome, the margaritas are always great and the fajitas are always sizzlin'. We try to emulate Mama's fajitas at home and just never get it near as good. I read some reviews of the salsa as being watery - it isn't chunky if you like it like that but it's so tasty and spicy hot - it's one of my absolute favorites. If you want great food, great drinks, fast friendly service and a fun environment, there is no other place in Seattle that I'd recommend.

2
★★★★★

How interesting to see all of the different reviews. I LOVE MAMA'S. I can't think of anything that needs improvement at this funky little place. My absolute favorite is the Nolasco chicken burrito, but I sub enchilada sauce for the ranchero sauce. YUM! We no longer live in Seattle but I make it back to Mama's every trip back home. The staff is always awesome, the margaritas are always great and the fajitas are always sizzlin'. We try to emulate Mama's fajitas at home and just never get it near as good. I read some reviews of the salsa as being watery - it isn't chunky if you like it like that but it's so tasty and spicy hot - it's one of my absolute favorites. If you want great food, great drinks, fast friendly service and a fun environment, there is no other place in Seattle that I'd recommend.

Pros: Great food, great service, good price, fast

Cons: None

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oh this will be fun...

read the reviews, people LOVE this place and people HATE this place. but then i've heard seattle is the passive/aggressive capitol of the world. so let me help you choose wether or not you want to dine here.

if you love the voodoo of seattle's classic grunge-era hangouts, dine here.
if you love no-bull straight up rice and beans style mexican, dine here.
if you love a strong tasty margarita with your spicy greasy carne asada, dine here.
if you love being able to sit at a table, and eat tortilla chips and salsa, stare at tattoos and rock star hair, scoop cheese off your nachos with a fork, and listen to the heart of this city, wearing whatever you damn well please, dine here.

if you've never dined here, dine here.

if you have to complain because your enchilada didn't look like emeril's version of an enchilada, please stay away from mama's mexican kitchen.

if you're too cool to sit at a plain old wooden table and be waited on by a female elvis impersonator, stay away from mama's mexican kitchen.

if you need help feeling special, or you're allergic to everything but rice, or you hate puppies and kitties, stay away from mama's mexican kitchen.

thank you.

2
★★★★☆

oh this will be fun...

read the reviews, people LOVE this place and people HATE this place. but then i've heard seattle is the passive/aggressive capitol of the world. so let me help you choose wether or not you want to dine here.

if you love the voodoo of seattle's classic grunge-era hangouts, dine here.
if you love no-bull straight up rice and beans style mexican, dine here.
if you love a strong tasty margarita with your spicy greasy carne asada, dine here.
if you love being able to sit at a table, and eat tortilla chips and salsa, stare at tattoos and rock star hair, scoop cheese off your nachos with a fork, and listen to the heart of this city, wearing whatever you damn well please, dine here.

if you've never dined here, dine here.

if you have to complain because your enchilada didn't look like emeril's version of an enchilada, please stay away from mama's mexican kitchen.

if you're too cool to sit at a plain old wooden table and be waited on by a female elvis impersonator, stay away from mama's mexican kitchen.

if you need help feeling special, or you're allergic to everything but rice, or you hate puppies and kitties, stay away from mama's mexican kitchen.

thank you.

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Went here the other night for a friend's birthday party with a large group of people. It has a good ambiance and is a casual place to get a drink/food. Their margaritas are tasty & strong but the food was very lacking in flavor. My enchilada was so so & the bean/chicken burrito I had was horrible. I only ate two bites. Frozen burritos in the grocery store taste better. I also love the statement on the menu "Authenic Southern Californian food". Hmmmm....being a San Diego native I beg to differ. Overall, good friendly service, good atmopshere, good for large parties & good drinks but not good for food.

1
★★★☆☆

Went here the other night for a friend's birthday party with a large group of people. It has a good ambiance and is a casual place to get a drink/food. Their margaritas are tasty & strong but the food was very lacking in flavor. My enchilada was so so & the bean/chicken burrito I had was horrible. I only ate two bites. Frozen burritos in the grocery store taste better. I also love the statement on the menu "Authenic Southern Californian food". Hmmmm....being a San Diego native I beg to differ. Overall, good friendly service, good atmopshere, good for large parties & good drinks but not good for food.

Pros: Good margaritas, good atmosphere

Cons: The food...

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I ate at Mama's Mexican Kitchen today and the waitress was not only slow, cold and unfriendly, but also the rudest I have ever encountered. I gave her a 20% tip at the end of the meal, but she stormed up to me the moment I left the bathroom on my way out of the restaurant, accusing me of not having given her any tip at all. Her poor service ruined the whole experience. I highly recommend avoiding this restaurant and its terrible service.

0
★☆☆☆☆

I ate at Mama's Mexican Kitchen today and the waitress was not only slow, cold and unfriendly, but also the rudest I have ever encountered. I gave her a 20% tip at the end of the meal, but she stormed up to me the moment I left the bathroom on my way out of the restaurant, accusing me of not having given her any tip at all. Her poor service ruined the whole experience. I highly recommend avoiding this restaurant and its terrible service.

Pros: Large portions

Cons: Terrible, rude service

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What a huge disappointment! I am SO not a picky or snooty eater, but I was so terribly underwhelmed with Mama's - you know that sensation when you feel as if you've just wasted good stomach space on a crappy meal? The salsa was watery, but I was still optimistic. And then the food arrived. I ordered a Screamer - an enchilada smothered in "ranchero sauce" - which really turned out to be more of the watery salsa! Bummer. My boyfriend's steak fajitas were presented with all the fixins, but the meat and veggies were sauteed in so much oil that he had a stomach ache after several bites. I tried the meat - and it had pretty good flavor, but the oil grossed me out as well. I was just left wondering: "Who are all these people giving this place a high rating??" I had buyer's remorse for the following 24 hours. I want to trust my fellow diners, but I will think twice before selecting a restaurant based on a high rating on Citysearch again.

0
★☆☆☆☆

What a huge disappointment! I am SO not a picky or snooty eater, but I was so terribly underwhelmed with Mama's - you know that sensation when you feel as if you've just wasted good stomach space on a crappy meal? The salsa was watery, but I was still optimistic. And then the food arrived. I ordered a Screamer - an enchilada smothered in "ranchero sauce" - which really turned out to be more of the watery salsa! Bummer. My boyfriend's steak fajitas were presented with all the fixins, but the meat and veggies were sauteed in so much oil that he had a stomach ache after several bites. I tried the meat - and it had pretty good flavor, but the oil grossed me out as well. I was just left wondering: "Who are all these people giving this place a high rating??" I had buyer's remorse for the following 24 hours. I want to trust my fellow diners, but I will think twice before selecting a restaurant based on a high rating on Citysearch again.

Pros: Plenty of seating, prompt service

Cons: The food negates any reason to visit this establishment

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Mama?s was exactly what I was expecting Cozy, Comfortable and Filling. Happy hour drink prices were an added bonus. The staff was friendly and the service quick. The food was a little bland (they do stock a number of quality hot sauces on the table for your enjoyment) but the prices were great. Another great Seattle establishment and my culinary adventure continues.

2
★★★★☆

Mama?s was exactly what I was expecting Cozy, Comfortable and Filling. Happy hour drink prices were an added bonus. The staff was friendly and the service quick. The food was a little bland (they do stock a number of quality hot sauces on the table for your enjoyment) but the prices were great. Another great Seattle establishment and my culinary adventure continues.

Pros: Happy hour

Cons: Need more spice

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I love the staff, every time the law firm girls get together we go to Mamas. Cures the midday blues with a little spice. The atmosphere is a dive, but a stylish intentional dive. Screamers are my fav (enchilada) the salsa is okay, I've made better-- but overall there will never be a Mexican Eatery close to my corazon!!!

2
★★★★★

I love the staff, every time the law firm girls get together we go to Mamas. Cures the midday blues with a little spice. The atmosphere is a dive, but a stylish intentional dive. Screamers are my fav (enchilada) the salsa is okay, I've made better-- but overall there will never be a Mexican Eatery close to my corazon!!!

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You can't live in this city and not love Mama's. Do yourself a favor and get the "Elvis Burrito". It'll change your life.

2
★★★★★

You can't live in this city and not love Mama's. Do yourself a favor and get the "Elvis Burrito". It'll change your life.

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A giant Chicken Nolasco and a couple strong margarita's and you too will understand. The staff is pretty hot, too!

2
★★★★★

A giant Chicken Nolasco and a couple strong margarita's and you too will understand. The staff is pretty hot, too!

Pros: Food, Folks and Fun!

Cons: Usually a wait, but that's a good thing!

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Ive had some pretty bad mexican food but this really takes the enchilada. Ive never had a blander burrito in my life. It tasted as if it was covered a in thin tomato juice. I dont understand how this gets rated favorably - since I think Taco Bell is more flavorfull. I use this place as the bar to determine if you know what good mexican food should taste like.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Ive had some pretty bad mexican food but this really takes the enchilada. Ive never had a blander burrito in my life. It tasted as if it was covered a in thin tomato juice. I dont understand how this gets rated favorably - since I think Taco Bell is more flavorfull. I use this place as the bar to determine if you know what good mexican food should taste like.

Pros: Get drunk so you dont have to taste the food

Cons: The food

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The food was okay, though the complimentary nacho chips were definitely stale, jsut heated up a little. Heaping portions left us all full. Although the hostess treated us (and other guests ) as if she didn't care at all, the waitress was friendly. Details kept on being forgotten, such as "no ice". Value for money isn't that great, except for a couple of items in the menu (the tacos).

1
★★★☆☆

The food was okay, though the complimentary nacho chips were definitely stale, jsut heated up a little. Heaping portions left us all full. Although the hostess treated us (and other guests ) as if she didn't care at all, the waitress was friendly. Details kept on being forgotten, such as "no ice". Value for money isn't that great, except for a couple of items in the menu (the tacos).

Pros: decor, maybe

Cons: price

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Over the years, I made many pilgrimages to Mama's to order my usual: beer, chips, and the enchilada plate. I have brought many friends to eat there. A few years ago, I wrote a 5-star Citysearch recommendation of the restaurant. During the past year, however, there has been an abrupt drop in quality. The restaurant now serves stale, store-bought chips. The sauces now carry that "fresh out of the can" taste. On my last visit, my food was brought to my table totally uncooked -- not only was the cheese on top unmelted, but the tortilla was raw, and the sauce was cold to the touch. This problem could have been easily rectified -- if the waitress had ever come back. I finally gave up, took the plate to the cashier, and left.

I will never go back.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Over the years, I made many pilgrimages to Mama's to order my usual: beer, chips, and the enchilada plate. I have brought many friends to eat there. A few years ago, I wrote a 5-star Citysearch recommendation of the restaurant. During the past year, however, there has been an abrupt drop in quality. The restaurant now serves stale, store-bought chips. The sauces now carry that "fresh out of the can" taste. On my last visit, my food was brought to my table totally uncooked -- not only was the cheese on top unmelted, but the tortilla was raw, and the sauce was cold to the touch. This problem could have been easily rectified -- if the waitress had ever come back. I finally gave up, took the plate to the cashier, and left.

I will never go back.

Pros: None

Cons: Bad Food, Bad Service

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I have only ever eaten one thing at Mama's, and that is the Veggie Nolasco Burrito. Yum, Yum, YUM!!!!! This is HAND'S DOWN the best burrito, in taste and value, in the entire city! I pay for one burrito, and get two meals! I love the sauce, I love the cheese, I love the rice and beans. My son loves Mama's, too, although he only ever eats a quesadilla. Everyone should go to Mama's, it's delicious!! I've always been seated promptly, had great service, and the food service is really fast. For those of you who have complained about parking, it's BELLTOWN fer criminy's sake!! Take the BUS!

2
★★★★★

I have only ever eaten one thing at Mama's, and that is the Veggie Nolasco Burrito. Yum, Yum, YUM!!!!! This is HAND'S DOWN the best burrito, in taste and value, in the entire city! I pay for one burrito, and get two meals! I love the sauce, I love the cheese, I love the rice and beans. My son loves Mama's, too, although he only ever eats a quesadilla. Everyone should go to Mama's, it's delicious!! I've always been seated promptly, had great service, and the food service is really fast. For those of you who have complained about parking, it's BELLTOWN fer criminy's sake!! Take the BUS!

Pros: Burritos, Burritos, Burritos

Cons: Pacifico cost's $4!!!

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This is a great place if you want tasty mexican food at an affordable price. The service is always fast and friendly, and they have great luch specials. Try the Elvis burrito!

2
★★★★★

This is a great place if you want tasty mexican food at an affordable price. The service is always fast and friendly, and they have great luch specials. Try the Elvis burrito!

Pros: Inexpensive, Quick Service, Great value

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Just had lunch today at Mama's and was pleasantly surprised with the good food. I had the pork verde with beans and rice. The food portion was very generous and not super salty. Seems a lot of restaurants in Seattle use way too much salt in food preparation. The refried beans and cheese were especially good. Service was quick and courteous though the bus boy kept dropping the hot sauce bottle on the next table. Our waitress was definitely showing off her many tatoos all over her back and stomach. Added to the whole experience of the place. This will definitely be on our list of places to go back to. The rest room could be updated.

2
★★★★★

Just had lunch today at Mama's and was pleasantly surprised with the good food. I had the pork verde with beans and rice. The food portion was very generous and not super salty. Seems a lot of restaurants in Seattle use way too much salt in food preparation. The refried beans and cheese were especially good. Service was quick and courteous though the bus boy kept dropping the hot sauce bottle on the next table. Our waitress was definitely showing off her many tatoos all over her back and stomach. Added to the whole experience of the place. This will definitely be on our list of places to go back to. The rest room could be updated.

Pros: Inexpensive, Quick service

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I am not picky about mexican food, whether it's "authentic", tex-mex, whatever, I rarely eat any that I don't like. Whether it's a trendy new place or a cheap taqueria, I'm good with it. Here's the deal: My enchiladas tasted EXACTLY like they were covered in tomato soup. That's all. I am certain that's all it was: Campbell's Tomato Soup. Sure, I like tomato soup. But I don't really want my enchiladas covered in it. After several bites and without saying a word, I asked the person I was with to taste it. She grimaced in disgust and said "Is that tomato soup?!!!"

0
★☆☆☆☆

I am not picky about mexican food, whether it's "authentic", tex-mex, whatever, I rarely eat any that I don't like. Whether it's a trendy new place or a cheap taqueria, I'm good with it. Here's the deal: My enchiladas tasted EXACTLY like they were covered in tomato soup. That's all. I am certain that's all it was: Campbell's Tomato Soup. Sure, I like tomato soup. But I don't really want my enchiladas covered in it. After several bites and without saying a word, I asked the person I was with to taste it. She grimaced in disgust and said "Is that tomato soup?!!!"

Cons: Nasty Food

.

this is one of my favorite burrito places in seattle. their burritos are absolutely delicious, smothered in sauce and cheese, almost exploding with beans, rice, and veggies (no meat). Never have i been able to actually finish one of those bad boys but i have definately come close. I have been coming to mama's for years and have never been disappointed with the food or the service. such a great atmoshpere, my favorites being the elvis pictures. highly recomended if you are in the mood for some cooked cheese with toppings!

2
★★★★★

this is one of my favorite burrito places in seattle. their burritos are absolutely delicious, smothered in sauce and cheese, almost exploding with beans, rice, and veggies (no meat). Never have i been able to actually finish one of those bad boys but i have definately come close. I have been coming to mama's for years and have never been disappointed with the food or the service. such a great atmoshpere, my favorites being the elvis pictures. highly recomended if you are in the mood for some cooked cheese with toppings!

Pros: burritos, decor, service

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One shouldn't have to pay much money for great Mexican food. The food was far too bland for a $10 plate of tacos. The service was fair and the parking was miserable. The only pro was we didn't have to wait long, even with a large party on a Friday night.

0
★☆☆☆☆

One shouldn't have to pay much money for great Mexican food. The food was far too bland for a $10 plate of tacos. The service was fair and the parking was miserable. The only pro was we didn't have to wait long, even with a large party on a Friday night.

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I'll just have to say that I thought moving to San Diego, a mere step from the border, would have brought me closer to the real deal as far as Mexican food and margarita's were concerned, but it's only left me longing for a Mama's shredded chicken taco, deep fried to just the right crispy and generously topped in guacamole for NO EXTRA CHARGE (and I thought avocados grew on trees in Southern CA) preceeded, and maybe followed, by my world's favorite Cadillac Margarita! Miss you- guess I didn't know what I had till it was gone.

2
★★★★★

I'll just have to say that I thought moving to San Diego, a mere step from the border, would have brought me closer to the real deal as far as Mexican food and margarita's were concerned, but it's only left me longing for a Mama's shredded chicken taco, deep fried to just the right crispy and generously topped in guacamole for NO EXTRA CHARGE (and I thought avocados grew on trees in Southern CA) preceeded, and maybe followed, by my world's favorite Cadillac Margarita! Miss you- guess I didn't know what I had till it was gone.

Pros: Value, Service, Ambiance

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I did not really like my enchiladas. They were really plain and I think they just used old el paso for the sauce. Oh, but the drinks are strong.

1
★★☆☆☆

I did not really like my enchiladas. They were really plain and I think they just used old el paso for the sauce. Oh, but the drinks are strong.

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Mama's is the best Mexi resturant I've ever been to! From the food to the atmosphere, you really can't go wrong with Moma's. The place is just so 'Seattle', you won't see a person who works there without a tatoo or body piercing, and they're accepting of everyone. Definately a must go!

2
★★★★★

Mama's is the best Mexi resturant I've ever been to! From the food to the atmosphere, you really can't go wrong with Moma's. The place is just so 'Seattle', you won't see a person who works there without a tatoo or body piercing, and they're accepting of everyone. Definately a must go!

Pros: Reasonably priced, excelent ambiance, fun dining expierence

Cons: bad parking

.

This is a make believe mexican resturant. They use canned chiles for their salsa and what's worst is that they use canned chiles for their chile rellenos.
The food is BLAH! I have no idea how this place ever made it on the list. Obviously, the raters don't really know real mexican food.

0
★☆☆☆☆

This is a make believe mexican resturant. They use canned chiles for their salsa and what's worst is that they use canned chiles for their chile rellenos.
The food is BLAH! I have no idea how this place ever made it on the list. Obviously, the raters don't really know real mexican food.

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I just ate here for the first time last week. I loved the food, it was really fresh & tasty. While the decor is extremely casual, it fits the bill for a nice, relaxing and satisfying Mexican meal. I went with a large group and the service was great. I recommend this place & try the guacamole & nolasco burrito for sure!

2
★★★★★

I just ate here for the first time last week. I loved the food, it was really fresh & tasty. While the decor is extremely casual, it fits the bill for a nice, relaxing and satisfying Mexican meal. I went with a large group and the service was great. I recommend this place & try the guacamole & nolasco burrito for sure!

.

I don't quite understand the hype for this place. Ambience is good, but food is mediocre.

1
★★★☆☆

I don't quite understand the hype for this place. Ambience is good, but food is mediocre.

Pros: Ambience

Cons: Mediocre Food

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When I first saw the decor and the prices, I thought Hey, this is divey! This is promising! Looking at the plates that arrived, I thought wed found a Mexican greasy spoon. (Im sure you know the type: bad, but in a tasty, comforting way.) Alas the food was so bad that I cant even recommend it for sentimental reasons. It was greasy-spoon bad, yes, but in a BAD way. On top of all that, its prime location means that its way too busy despite the quality of the food. It only scores as high as it does on the basis of its quirky atmosphere/decor, and an inexplicable soft spot that my inner redneck has for places that arent trying to be culinary temples.

1
★★☆☆☆

When I first saw the decor and the prices, I thought Hey, this is divey! This is promising! Looking at the plates that arrived, I thought wed found a Mexican greasy spoon. (Im sure you know the type: bad, but in a tasty, comforting way.) Alas the food was so bad that I cant even recommend it for sentimental reasons. It was greasy-spoon bad, yes, but in a BAD way. On top of all that, its prime location means that its way too busy despite the quality of the food. It only scores as high as it does on the basis of its quirky atmosphere/decor, and an inexplicable soft spot that my inner redneck has for places that arent trying to be culinary temples.

Pros: quirky decor, unpretentious, Belltown location

Cons: too busy, mediocre food at best

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It has a good, party atmosphere with lots of kitsch and Belltown attitude. The chips are good. The food is average or below and definately not worth the price. So many better mexican restaurants in town.

0
★☆☆☆☆

It has a good, party atmosphere with lots of kitsch and Belltown attitude. The chips are good. The food is average or below and definately not worth the price. So many better mexican restaurants in town.

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Unfortunately I decided to try Mama's after reading the Citysearch review. It was the worst food (Mexican or otherwise) I have had in a long time. Tasteless, unauthentic and greasy just about describes what I was served. There are many other places that serve better Mexican and are a better value (Beso Del Sol and Burrito Loco come to mind).

0
★☆☆☆☆

Unfortunately I decided to try Mama's after reading the Citysearch review. It was the worst food (Mexican or otherwise) I have had in a long time. Tasteless, unauthentic and greasy just about describes what I was served. There are many other places that serve better Mexican and are a better value (Beso Del Sol and Burrito Loco come to mind).

Pros: Salsa, Ambience

Cons: The Food, Service

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Of all the Seattle restaurant fixations - like thinking Dick's makes a great burger or going to Anthony's for haute cuisine - this is maybe the most puzzling. This city has scads of good, solid Mexican places but friends of mine keep trying to drag me here. Problem is, I've been here and it sucks. Mama's plates are ugly, the food is badly seasoned, the whole place smells not of cumin and tortillas but of stale B.O., grease, and Lysol (Thank God for the Lysol!), and the food is so Americanized that even calling it Mexican is tantamount to false advertising. I think it's the name, which conjures up simple, hearty food served by a nurturing, earthy Mother figure. Nothing could be further from the facts. This is Mama as in "Yo' Mama!", a Mother with eternal PMS and no sense of taste.

0
★☆☆☆☆

Of all the Seattle restaurant fixations - like thinking Dick's makes a great burger or going to Anthony's for haute cuisine - this is maybe the most puzzling. This city has scads of good, solid Mexican places but friends of mine keep trying to drag me here. Problem is, I've been here and it sucks. Mama's plates are ugly, the food is badly seasoned, the whole place smells not of cumin and tortillas but of stale B.O., grease, and Lysol (Thank God for the Lysol!), and the food is so Americanized that even calling it Mexican is tantamount to false advertising. I think it's the name, which conjures up simple, hearty food served by a nurturing, earthy Mother figure. Nothing could be further from the facts. This is Mama as in "Yo' Mama!", a Mother with eternal PMS and no sense of taste.

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If you want really Authentic mexican I really wouldn't go to Momma. Momma's is Mexican American food. The prices are right and you get a lot of food for you buck. The margaritas are good also.

2
★★★★☆

If you want really Authentic mexican I really wouldn't go to Momma. Momma's is Mexican American food. The prices are right and you get a lot of food for you buck. The margaritas are good also.

Pros: Friendly Wait-staff

Cons: Parking, Almost always Crowded

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mama's is my very favorite mexican restaurant in the seattle area. the portions are huge, the prices are affordable, and the food is delicious! plus the atmosphere is very laid back and comfortable. all around a great place to eat.

2
★★★★★

mama's is my very favorite mexican restaurant in the seattle area. the portions are huge, the prices are affordable, and the food is delicious! plus the atmosphere is very laid back and comfortable. all around a great place to eat.

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Mama's is the hangout! Great Mexican food, good Margaritas, and Cheap Prices, especially on a college budget!

2
★★★★★

Mama's is the hangout! Great Mexican food, good Margaritas, and Cheap Prices, especially on a college budget!

Pros: yummy nachos, Killer margaritas

Cons: No Parking

 

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