El Torito Grill is the upscale sibling of the El Torito restaurant chain. Parent company Real Mex Restaurants also owns and operates Chevy’s, Acapulco, and El Paso Cantina. Menu items at the El Torito Grill are a bit pricier and use different recipes than the other restaurants in the Real Mex family. Seating inside is comfortable at both booths and center tables. Parking is ample but, as with all restaurants in this part of Torrance, can be crowded at prime times.
CARL: The El Torito Grill is fancier (read: pricier) than a typical Lunch Pig choice but Oliver and I were in the mood for Mexican and in the mood for something with air conditioning. This El Torito is located in the “Torrance Restaurant Row” sandwiched between Benihana’s and the Souplantation. The building is nice both inside and out and it has a ambiance of a more upscale restaurant. Upon entering, we were seated promptly, our waiter was very attentive and the overall service was better than average and better than the menu prices suggest. I opted for my standard Chicken Fajita Burrito – described as a “red chile corn crépe (fancy word for tortilla), roasted pasilla chiles, jack cheese, peruvian beans with pasilla-cilantro rice, fresh avocado relish and sweet corn cake”. The burrito was a good size but my all time favorite side dish, sweet corn cake, was a small portion. I could probably eat an entire burrito made of nothing but sweet corn cake – but that’s a subject for another day. The burrito was topped with a mild sauce that I didn’t love – it was a bit too creamy and I prefer more tomato in my burrito topping. The rice was delicious and the beans were better than average. Both perfect sides for this lunchtime combo. The food was good but the service was great tipping the scale up to 4.5 Pigs despite the high price tag. If you are looking for a nice Mexican restaurant with a more upscale business vibe for a meeting, El Torito Grill is an excellent choice.
OLIVER: I love Mexican food, so I’m biased. When you first thing you will notice when you walk up to El Torito Grill is the smell of Mesquite that permeates the air. El Torito Grill is a little different than the regular El Torito. They have a higher grade dish and a more modern menu to match what is popular now in terms of Mexican Grills.
I broke off from the typical two taco combo that I would normally get and went for a grilled steak fajitas burrito. Basically the same as Carl but substituted with steak. It is a good size, meat was grilled well and there is a good amount, not as much as I might like, but it was ok. The sauce, rice and beans were all done well and very flavorful.