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About Playa Cabana Hacienda
We’re a favourite here on the Dupont strip. Steps from Yorkville and an oasis from the downtown core, we at Playa Cabana offer traditional Mexican fare with a cosy neighbourhood feel. Fresh seafood specials, handmade tortillas, local artisan-made, organic ingredients, and premium tequila-based cocktails merge with a relaxed atmosphere and a passionate service staff to provide a truly authentic experience.
Hours of Operation:
Tuesday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 2:00am
Sunday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
CAN$30 and under
Stay Away until summer
I really enjoy this restaurant. The food is great (even if the pulpo in the pulpo taco was far too chewy). I love the elotes (corn), the LA Truck taco, the drinks, and a bunch of other items on the menu.
But this place must be avoided in cold months. Aside from having no place to put coats, so one is expected to sit on their coats in an already fairly tight, cramped seating environment, their triple door entranceis a 5 star FAIL. The doors are so close that for more than one person to enter the restaurant all three doors are invariably open at the same time letting in large wafts of freezing cold air. The restaurant is so small that it is enough to send a chill through the entire main floor. (Yes, there is a darker, less hip dining upstairs option). Furthermore, the doors often get stuck ajar causing the a door or two to remain open - often ignored or not noticed - by the very busy and otherwise competent staff. Twice my winter dining experience was ultimately an uncomfortable experience for my dining companion and me. Looking around at others keeping their coats on - we were far from alone.
I will return for the fun, delicious, and slightly overpriced dinner - but in a few months when a properly winterized restaurant is not necessary.
A very good experience. The food was fresh and very delicious. The service was friendly, and when I asked for recommendations, the server was helpful. I was hosting out-of-town guests and they were raving about the restaurant for the rest of the weekend!
The only issue was the speed of service. Our appetizers and mains arrived at the same time, before we even received our drinks! Given I was firmly reminded that the table had a two-hour time limit when I received a reminder call, I felt a bit rushed. If you want a more leisurely experience, I would clarify that you want your apps and main separately. (You'll still have lots of time, we were done in an hour.)
Great, but busy!
I've been several times-you definitely need to make a reservation (unless you are planning to go at 5 or 10)
It's dark and noisy, which some friends have said they couldn't see their menus or hear conversation. Great for dates, family gatherings, etc... When it's really busy, you better only have 1 or 2 q's...the waiters are usually too busy to want to help. Having food allergies, I found this frustrating my first couple of visits. The food is SOO good though!
Great if you have gluten and dairy allergies, there is lots of choice...almost the entire menu! If you are in a group, be warned that food comes out as it's ready, so one person may be finished before the other has began. Awkward if you are on a date and it's just 2 of you, haha!
Good experience but not great
We went to Playa Cabana for a birthday dinner (group of 9). Service was good, atmosphere was pretty cool too. Food was just OK though, nothing spectacular though. I thought it was overpriced for what we got, especially since I've been to Rancho Relaxo and Margerita's here in Toronto and got much better food for a lot less. We didn't like the fact we weren't told ahead of time there was an automatic gratuity added to each bill for groups of people over 8, that would've been good to know for our guests.
Playa Cabana's in a great spot, has a great patio and tons of potential but the food really needs to be done better. That being said, I'm willing to try it again when the nice weather rolls around.
We loved the cedar smell of the warm enclosed balcony. The service was equally warm and inviting.
The cocktail pitchers all looked delicious but we drove and couldn't try them… but we'll know better next time.
The shortrib tacos were incredible.
We paid using the Tab app! Too fun!
Mexican That Rocks
We had made it in this weekend for a nice dinner with some friends. This place is tight, but very cool. The decor and atmosphere are amazing.
The drinks are great. They make amazing drinks, producing their own syrups makes the difference. Everything is made fresh and quick. The hot sauces on the table are a key in having a good time. We had the short rib, grilled fish, and churizo taco's. All great. Unfortunatelyy they ran out of the Churro that night, but the chocolate cake was a great backup. Definitee place to come back to.
Upon being seated we told that we had to be out in 2 hours. A standard disclaimer I'm sure, but not a great way to start the night. The staff was attentive, though we had to ask twice for every drink.
Overall, the food was a bit greasy and heavy. The spare rib taco shell was deep fried, not neccassry, especially after greasy chips and salsa. Fun atmosphere, but food could be brighter and a bit lighter/ fresher.
We booked at Hacienda, but initially went to another location because I forgot to tell my husband there were four locations of Playa Cabana..but, it was just down the street. We were seated upstairs and then told a big party was coming in and we would be moved in an hour and a half. We were not thrilled with that idea, but a table for four opened downstairs and it was perfect. Fun atmosphere, initially noisy but we adjusted. We had delicious shrimp appetizers, glaucoma and chips, great lobster enchiladas, and a pitcher of sugar free margaritas. All ages, mostly younger than us.
Good food, Terrible seating
Went to Playa Cabana on a Thursday evening (around 530) and the place was already quite busy. Inside the restaurant is SUPER cramped as they place tables so close together, you're practically sitting on your neighbors. Our waiter literally was leaning on top of me to serve the people sitting in corner as the space was too small for him to actually walk next to the table. After getting cracked in the head by the waiters' elbow twice, we decided to eat outside in some pretty brisk fall weather, but the extra space was worth it. The food itself was good. Started with the Camerones Palomitas - very good. As well as the braised short rib and La Truck tacos - also both good. Wouldn't go back solely because of the seating though. Just terrible.
Fun vs food
The Hacienda was hopping with a packed house on our Sunday evening visit. Service was friendly and attentive and the place has a fun vibe. Food could not keep pace. It was all good but entirely unexceptional. Happy to return when with a group because its fun! But don't have super high expectations for a dining experience.
Four Star Find
Went here for my lady's birthday and was not disappointed. Apart from the somewhat cramped seating this was an excellent find. The food was delicious and the service was professional and "on the ball".
We ate and dined to our hearts content for just over 200.
Try the lobster taco if you get the chance!
We had heard so many positive reviews about this place so we decided to take our friends from Europe there on their first evening in Canada! We were so disappointed: the noise level prevented any conversation unless we yelled at each other, the chairs were uncomfortable, the food took close to 30 min to arrive and did not excite us at all, one waitress while re-filling our water managed to pour it all over us!!! When we asked about the Ceviche and wanted to know the fish of the day- she did not know! All in all a very dissppointing experience.
We're a fan
We're a fan of the place, and have tried their locations on both the two restaurants of Dupont as well as the Junction.
Definitely would return only thing is reservations or getting a spot in especially when it first opened we found the staff not so helpful or kind and tried 3 times as we workout at the gym close by on Dupont and gave up for a year. Seems like they are more able to take on walks ins and rsvp now so that is nice. I prefer the south side of the restaurant on Dupont then the north side thought the patio is much bigger on the north side on Dupont. Good food overall.
Great meal on the 2nd floor patio
Took my GF here for dinner on her birthday. She loves Mexican food and so do I. Playa Cabana is nice looking spot with a patio by the sidewalk and another patio on the second floor looking out over Dupont. Service was good, but not outstanding. As for the food, we started with guac and chips and it was a generous portion of guac and chips - 4 could share! Then ordered flautas and 6 tacos. I must be too used to smallish tacos served at other "hip" Mexican restaurants but believe me that is not how tacos are served at Playa Cabana. The tacos were served on a medium sized tortilla and just stuffed with filling. 3 would have been plenty for me even without the appetizers, but of course I ended up eating 4. Highly recommend the short rib tacos.
Service Bad. Food Cold
Went there on my wife's birthday, big mistake. One waiter serving everyone in the restaurant . Music so loud you couldn't talk. Terrible margaritas. Food cold and tasted sour. No-one finished the meal. We paid over a hundred for a poor meal.
Not suitable for groups
We were a party of 11, and had chosen a group menu in advance (the restaurant required it). However, our waiter was not aware of that and when after asking about that, he went to talk to the manager, came back apologizing that they had forgotten to inform him about it. After that issue was sorted (it took about an hour) the food started coming quickly to our table and it was so delicious. But in the future, I would not go there with a big group. But will definately go back with smaller party.
Better Off going to Grand Electric
From the moment I walked in, I was a bit disappointed. I had a reservation and had to wait 15 minutes for a table (despite coming early) while a couple that didn't have a reservation and came in after me was seated immediately by a different hostess.
When it came to the food, the appetizers were amazing. I had the elotes and the shrimp.
For mains we ordered the LA truck tacos (beef), jerk lobster tacos, cactus tacos, and lamb taquitos. Simply put, Grand Electric has significantly better and cheaper tacos.
When booking I requested seating on the upstairs patio. Hacienda called to confirm and I noted my request. I was told that it wouldn’t be a problem and she would put a note in my reservation. On arrival the hostess directed us to an inside table. I said I was told we could have a table on the upstairs patio. She basically called me a liar saying that couldn’t have happened because they don't take reservations on the patio. I pushed her until she grudgingly led us to a table for 4 on a VIRTUALLY EMPTY PATIO!!!
What is with the attitude? The rest of the meal was fine, food was good (some very good). Other than the hostess, the rest of the service staff was very friendly and efficient. Problem was that she put me off.
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