Javier’s Mexican Restaurant at Aria Las Vegas is what you would expect for a fancy Mexican food restaurant in a resort. They are probably not using lard in their tacos and the tequila is premium. That is both good and bad for you, the Las Vegas visitor.
Mexican food is always tricky for me because I’ve grown up on plenty of fabulous attempts at the cuisine. Growing up in Southern California the taco truck was a staple before food trucks became hip and expensive. Most of my college meals came from simple food truck serving Mexican staples such as burritos and tacos of beef and pork.
It’s no surprise that Javier’s has made its way to Las Vegas as most everyone from Southern California eventually makes it to Las Vegas.
Located off the casino floor Javier’s is a refreshing addition to the stellar restaurant line-up at Aria. Javier’s brings a bit more of a casual atmosphere to the resort and offers another option for lunch in a comfortable and relatively affordable location. (Lunch is slightly less expensive than dinner and relative to other options at Aria less expensive overall.)
Javier’s Mexican Cuisine Las Vegas
3730 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Reservations: recommended not required
Price Range: moderate to expensive
Lunch and dinner daily – 11:30 – Midnight
What to Expect:
You’ll notice the large bar area the minute you walk past the restaurant and you should as I have already found it a very comfortable place to have a hand-shaken Margarita. I personally am fond of the Jalapeno Margarita. The large open windows looking out to the casino give the room plenty of space and keep the energy lively. Check out the back wall as they have done their best to freak out their patrons with a Day of the Dead looking wood carving that is both impressive and frightening at the same time.
The lounge area is a possibility for a pre-show drink and the large booths have the potential for a little mayhem considering the amount of good tequila available.
How’s the food?
I’ll preface this by telling you that I like Javier’s. I think it is a great addition to the property. I’ll also tell you that I will most likely return and have the Camarones Rancheros. However, I’m a little disturbed by a place that claims authentic Mexican food yet does not make their own tortillas. I also would like to see a better price point. I get it, the nice hotel restaurant and good ingredients most likely dictate the prices but paying this much for Mexican food can seem ridiculous. However, I think I have an answer that makes Javier’s more affordable and should give you a reason to visit.
The entrées are ample. There is no way any one person should eat all that food. My solution is simple, share a meal and have an extra drink. Las Vegas is far more fun when you sit next to someone you enjoy and you share a meal. Split some tacos and you’ll leave full and without spending a small fortune.
What you should try Javier’s at ARIA Las Vegas:
- Ceviche – The Pulpo (octopus) had the best flavor but the shrimp and fish were adequate. I should explain that I have been on a quest to find the best ceviche in Las Vegas and it is tough to compete with the street versions I have found in Los Angeles, Miami, and San Diego so you should enjoy this ceviche but it will not change your life.
- Mole Poblano – This is one of the dishes I would come back for but split. It’s a lot of food and I would enjoy it for more for half the price. The spices in the mole come through in an instant and you get the roasted peppers and playing off a slightly sweet balancing act that possibly is coming from tomatoes or a fruit. I’m being ambiguous with the flavors because I good mole will confuse you a bit because the dish involves plenty of ingredients. They do it fairly well here and this is a must try.
- Enchiladas Poblanas – Choose the chicken enchiladas and you get the mole flavor to go along with it. They are stuffed with chicken and topped with cotija. If they had homemade tortillas this would easily be among my favorite dishes at Aria.
- Camarones Rancheros – I really like this dish. I would really love the dish if they made their own tortillas. The shrimp are perfectly cooked and the garlic, onions and poblano chiles simply make my taste buds sway. Dropping the shrimp into a tortilla should make it better but that poor excuse for a corn tortilla takes something away from the dish. It’s still good but it can be great.
- La Tablita – This is the best deal and you should split this among 3 people because it is still too much food for 2. Two adults and two children could easily have enough food with this entrée. You get beef and pork, you can also choose chicken. All the condiments come along as well as rice and beans. This is like having your own Mexican backyard barbecue. Make a taco, have a margarita and you are set. There is a ton of food and you will not hungry with this dish.