MALO is Des Moines’ destination for Latin cuisine. From classic Havana cocktails to inventive Mexican dishes, MALO celebrates all the flavors of Latin America.
Latin American, Mexican / Southwestern
Hours of Operation:
Sunday: 10am - 9pm
Monday - Thursday: 11am - 11pm
Friday & Saturday: 11am - Midnight
$30 and under
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
There is ample street parking near our restaurant.
Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu
Malo Ratings and Reviews
Great place, excellent management! The ...
Great place, excellent management! The food was terrific!
Malo has always provided good great loca ...
Malo has always provided good great location for lunch. Our server was great. The food was good, or what I've come to expect from dining here.
Eating alone on business trip. When I a ...
Eating alone on business trip. When I arrived restaurant was swamped by groups going to a concert so getting table was a little slow but hostess handled it perfectly. When I got a table (nice table on the patio) long wait for service. Waiter was fine when he showed up but that seldom happened. Ordered a local beer and a couple of tacos (choriso and carnitas) and both were great. Review would be glowing were it not for the largely absent waiter.
Well worth putting up with the high n ...
Well worth putting up with the high noise level
Business lunch at Malo. Ample parking on ...
Business lunch at Malo. Ample parking on-street and in nearby garage. Outdoor seating is available. We ate inside. Had to track-down wait staff to place order. Had the blackened salmon salad. Flavors should have worked better than they did so not sure what was off. Not bad, just not as good as I've had elsewhere with similar ingredients. Wouldn't be my first choice to return but I would go back.
Good seemed overpriced for what we got. ...
Good seemed overpriced for what we got. $21 for enchiladas should mean excellent enchiladas...but they were average. Can get just as good or better at a lot of places for a fraction of the price.
The service was slow. The service was ru ...
The service was slow. The service was rude. The food was drenched in too much aioli and you're only provided the fabric napkin the silverware was initially wrapped in. When we asked to have a stack of napkins brought over because the food was so messy--the waitress brought over literally 4 small napkins for my guest and I to split. it took the hostess ten minutrs to find the reservation even though I provided her a printed copy of the Open Table confirmation screen.
Frequent customer, but I must say that t ...
Frequent customer, but I must say that the service was really slow on this particular Wednesday night (from the kitchen and bar - not our waiter - he was hustling). There's no reason it should have taken two hours from sitting down to paying the bill for the light meals and drinks we ordered. Still like this place, though.
Good, drinks, and service were excellent ...
Good, drinks, and service were excellent. I suggest the shrimp tacos and the El Rey Margarita (well worth the $12).
Good food. Service was very helpful. Ins ...
Good food. Service was very helpful. Inside appeared to be a little loud for normal conversation, but we sat out and had a pleasant experience. Would definitely return
It fantastic as usual. We love going but was first time our son was able to go. Our entire group had a great time. Food was fantastic, can't wait to again !
Fun downtown place to gather with friends
My third time here in the last 6 months while visiting DSM. I recommend the tacos HIGHLY. That is what I ordered last time, along with the cinnamon gelato, and the food was amazing! This time I had the garden burger & it was pretty good but it fell apart so I ate it w/a fork. I did love the Caesar salad & my hubby thought the Cuban sandwich was delicious! We ate on the patio & it was busy but not overly noisy which is a big positive to me. The waiter was very nice but rather slow and we thought he had to be new b/c he was not totally familiar with the menu. Visiting from San Diego, we were thrilled to see Ballast Point beer on the menu! Would greatly appreciate more vegetarian options that include a protein source, for example, add a vegetarian protein to the meatless tacos. Overall a great place to get together w/friends & enjoy a fabulous meal!
Fun Downtown Spot
Great Food, wild and delicious menu, There is something for all tastes!! Guacamole was fresh and wonderful, the Carne Asada was fantastic
Very good. Guac was unbelievable
Very good. Guac was unbelievable
Fantastic restaurant for those intereste ...
Fantastic restaurant for those interested in Latin cuisine with a twist. Phenomenal margaritas, guacamole, warm chips and outstanding carnitas. Ambiance is great though it can get loud at times. Highly recommended for groups or anyone who is interested in high quality Latin cuisine.
Great salads and drinks!
Great salads and drinks!
Just no wow factor and the quac was cold ...
Just no wow factor and the quac was cold like it had been sitting in the fridge. It wasn't fresh. The tacos were just ok. The margarita came in a champagne glass and wasn't special in presentation. Disappointed!
Everything I have ordered here has been ...
Everything I have ordered here has been addictive!
Good good just too much to eat!
Good good just too much to eat!
Tasty Latin-Mex food, Great Non-Standard Brunch
Food is tasty and makes this worth a visit. In each entree I have had nothing which has seemed out of place (taste or ingredient-wise) in any item I have ordered. While I have my favorites, I have not been sorry with anything I have ordered. They also have items that work for specialized diets (nods to low carb, also gluten and veg) Good place to relax with friends. Tacos Ala-cart, many varieties (with option of flour, masa, or lettuce leaf based) Al-pastor was enjoyable. At time of writing orders of ala-cart tacos included with brunch at no extra cost. At time of writing kids brunch free with adult. Several visits - all without complaint, enjoyable, and relaxing. Wait staff - pleasant, friendly, helpful. They show up when needed and don't linger or hover. They also have been knowledgeable about the items on the menu and don't seem lost when asked questions. Beer list unique with great options - many brews from Spain and Latin countries - items not readily available in the area. Bar makes great cocktails if ordered from the menu (well crafted), or commonly known - they do get a little lost if it is not on their menu. So well known cocktails - great, lesser known ones...may not occur. I know someone really happy with the Mojitos they make. Did a really good job on a side-car. The location is a former central fire station and is shared with Des Moines Social Club, Kapes Cafe and an art gallery - so there is something to do before and after meals. The space itself is large and open with giant windows / former overhead doors allowing in plenty of light. Though the space is large and open with plenty of hard surfaces the crowd noise is tamed by the sheer amount of overhead space in the dine in area. They also have a well-laid out patio. Have not been late night...only lunch and brunch. Like the Luchador artwork. Would recommend and have recommended it to others.
The place was busy when we went there on the Saturday night before Mother's Day. It was a little noisy, but I thought that just added to the fun, vibrant atmosphere. Our waitress friendly and knew her stuff when we asked a few questions about menu items. The food was delicious and HOT, something that often isn't the case at a couple of the priciest places in Des Moines. I had tacos. They were seasoned so well I didn't ask for taco sauce.
Cinco de Mayo. Waited over 15 minutes fo ...
Cinco de Mayo. Waited over 15 minutes for cocktails & another half hour for appetizers. We had a birthday celebration in our group, and they did provide a dessert gratis.
Great Happy Hour
Stopped on Cinco de Mayo for Happy Hour - busy but the food was still excellent. Can't beat the variety of single tacos and margaritas at this spot. We've tried appetizers and entrees too on prior visits and have always been impressed. I would recommend reservations - there is always a wait.
Great breakfast brunch..
We went to Sunday brunch here for the 2nd time. So good, I'd recommend it again. Kids 12 and under eat the buffet free which makes it really affordable for parents. Food was great, tacos are always good and you'll leave happy.
Fun and creative food!
My fist time at brunch and plenty of choices at the buffet. Loved the chocolate fountain and the specialty cake.
Excellent food, fun atmosphere
Our food was excellent. This is the second visit we have made and I tried something different each time. Have never been disappointed. We were seated before our reservation time and our server was excellent.
The food was great, service was good, prices are reasonable. I would definitely recommend this restaurant.
First time visit, won't be the last
Was very surprised at the dining area - very sleek and modern. Service was prompt and efficient. Separate checks handled accurately. Food was generously portioned. Salsa was tasty with a little heat. Would definitely go back and bring more friends.
Food was fresh tasting and delicious. Ou ...
Food was fresh tasting and delicious. Our server was friendly and helpful in helping us decide what to order.
It was very noisy - really difficult to hear the person across the table from you. It was our first visit and since the food was good, we would go back again.
The tacos and appetizers are absolutely delicious every time we stop in.
Sitting on the patio was excellent! The ...
Sitting on the patio was excellent! The meat in the tacos was not hot but tasted delicious. The sampler plate was great and gave a taste of different food items. Great margarita!
Guac is fantastic. Tonight it had a lot ...
Guac is fantastic. Tonight it had a lot of lime which is how I like it. Our server was attentive, kind and capable. We enjoyed him. Drinks were delicious and our entrees very good. We always enjoy our food here.
The food was not special and overpriced. The was great.
Delicious brunch. Everything was always ...
Delicious brunch. Everything was always well stocked and hot! Fresh omelet a, burritos, and tacos will have us going back for sure!
Good but loud
The food was good, the margaritas were great and our server was amazing. The only complaint is that the salsa was not spicy at all and it was very loud, even with it being half empty.
This was my first experience, loved it!
The food and drinks were great! We will definitely be coming back!
hip + dependable
When it first opened, I wasn't impressed. But I've been back, like, five times the last six months and every visit has been delicious. Our last visit was especially good because even though it was very busy, the waiter (can't remember your name, dude. sorry!) was attentive, fun, and fast. Love the ambiance, the guacamole, and the Al Pastor. This is one of my favorite places in the city.
Carnitas and other Latin dishes excellen ...
Carnitas and other Latin dishes excellent!
Top-notch service and food
Had a great meal on a Saturday night. Our server was very attentive and polite. Food was great, per usual.
Please sign in to record your input. Thanks!
Report this review as inappropriate?
If you believe this review should be removed from OpenTable, please let us know and someone will investigate.