El Monte Grill - Fort Collins

El Monte Grill
1611 S College Ave., Suite 100
Fort Collins, CO 80525
Mon – Sun 4 pm to close

After reading so many positive reviews about this place, we couldn't wait to go in and check it out. Being the sister restaurant of the Rio Grande, we figured  it couldn't be half bad. We hit up the El Monte Grill during happy hour with a strong desire to try some specialty drinks and margaritas.

Atmosphere:  The outside of the El Monte Grill has bright lights detracting from the fact the place looks like a store front. There is a patio right out front,  facing the parking lot. Once inside you will see dark wood floors covered with rows of booths and tables. The horse-shoe shaped bar is to the left and lined with booths and a few high top tables. The dimly- lit- bar- area is painted a burnt sienna color and lined with hanging pendent lights as well as cute star shaped lanterns. The place has an upscale and trendy feel, but not a lot of room to move around when it gets crowded. The crowd itself was older couples and a few groups of 30- something year old women.

Service:  We sat at the bar and a specialty menu was thrown our way. The Bartender was less than friendly and seemed annoyed while making drinks. Maybe she had a bad day? But she didn't stop there. She would gripe to any employee who would listen about poor tips or errors on drink orders. Several servers and managers roamed the bar area as well and did not bother to assist her, while our glasses sat empty. Overall the service sucked and employees were not the least bit friendly.

Drinks:  The drink menu, we were given at the bar, offers margarita’s (no special flavors), mojitos, beer, wine and a few specialty drinks like the “Esteban”. They do have a few beers on tap and your favorite Mexican imports in a bottle. We started with the Margarita and the Esteban, but were disappointed with the size portions at $4 a pop during happy hour (normally $8).  We then switched to Modelo Especial and Dos Equis xx at $2 a pop (normally $4). They do carry a large selection of tequila’s and tequila inspired beverages as well.

Food:  Maybe our impression of El Monte Grill would have been more positive had we tried the food. We were a little surprised that chips and salsa are not complimentary. The menu is impressive offering appetizers, salads, tacos, tortas and burgers as well as specialties like Rib Eye Steak, Chicken Mole and Glazed Salmon.

Amenities:  Patio in front , banquet room, catering, reservations, kids menu.

Parking:  Parking available in the parking lot in the center where it’s located

The Buzz:  Daily happy hour from 4 pm to 6 pm, ladies night every first Thursday of the month with half price drinks & manicures and massages, live music on Fridays 8:30 pm to 11pm, Saturday tequila days with tequila inspired drinks and dinner specials.

El Monte Grill on Urbanspoon

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