El Naranjo
March 22nd, 2010 by MikeK

GD Star Rating

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85 Rainey St.

Mon – Wed 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Thur – Sat 6:00pm to 12:00am


Food Description
Just opening. Chef Iliana de la Vega, who formerly had an acclaimed restaurant of the same name in Oaxaca, Mexico. Look for Oaxacan street staples like molotes, tostadas, tacos fritos, and more, plus daily specials like mole and tamales.

Example only, changes frequently

GD Star Rating
El Naranjo, 3.3 out of 5 based on 16 ratings

11 Responses  
  • Judi Ross writes:
    April 12th, 201011:57 amat

    Congratulations Iliana – I can’t wait until I come back to the states – I drive through Austin and now I will have a great place to stop and eat!!!

    GD Star Rating
  • Kelly Loub writes:
    April 12th, 20102:26 pmat

    Greetings Iliana~
    That is just awesome….I’ll have to forward it to some of my friends who reside in the area.
    Read a lovely article you had written in one of the restaurant publications about 3 months ago. Tried searching for an e-mail address for you with no luck. It sounds like you are busy at the CIA campus in San Antonio. I have pondered in sending one of our sons to a short class with you (he works for us here at the brewery).
    It’s great to see that you are spreading your talent, having success, and I hope happy.
    Best regards,
    Kelly Loub (judi ross’ daughter)
    Manhattan, KS

    GD Star Rating
  • Nancy Zaslavsky writes:
    July 18th, 201012:28 pmat

    Hi Iliana, Congrats!! Can’t wait to try everything next June when IACP is in Austin! -Nancy

    GD Star Rating
  • Tasty Touring » Blog Archive » Tasty Tuesdays: Best Austin Food Trailers at 6 p.m. writes:
    July 27th, 20101:06 amat

    […] my favorites are located on or near Rainey Street just southeast of the Austin Convention Center. El Naranjo was opened by Iliana de la Vega and her husband and features delicious interior Mexican food. The […]

  • Chris writes:
    August 11th, 201010:46 amat

    My wife and I stopped in for dinner on my birthday recently. We brought a bottle of Fess Parker Riesling from Santa Barbara and Chamisal Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir from Edna Valley with us. I figured those would be the best to complement the food.

    We ate damn near everything on the menu. Both the Molotes were perfectly fried – and the salsa verde was absolutely delicious. The Chileajo tacos were fresh and delicately flavored – loved the crunch of the perfectly cooked cauliflower and the snap of the fresh English peas. The chilled mango soup was a perfect complement to the Fess Parker Riesling, as was the pickled swordfish escabeche (which also went brilliantly with the Pinot Noir). The Tinga Verde were spectacular – chicken was cooked perfectly and I could bathe in the salsa verde. Which brings me to the crown jewel – the mole. Best I’ve ever had – struck sweet and bitter notes from what is obviously high quality Mexican chocolate (both Ibarra and imported Oaxacan)- with an underlying rich spiciness from guajillo peppers (I asked Iliana). My wife and I couldn’t get enough (except that we were stuffed). Portions were perfect and the meal only cost us $45.00!!!

    Lovely food, lovely service. I would recommend this to everyone!

    GD Star Rating
  • Tasty Touring » Blog Archive » Tasty Tuesdays: Best Interior Mexican writes:
    September 14th, 20108:57 amat

    […] the past couple years, Mexican restaurants serving interior cuisine include La Condesa, Garridos, El Naranjo, Papalote, Sago, La Sombra, Takoba, Zandunga, Zocalo, and more. Ceviche at La […]

  • Austin's Food Trucks | Mobile Food News writes:
    May 4th, 201110:34 pmat

    […] step up from the usual taco wagon, El Naranja is parked in the driveway of a dilapidated house at 85 Rainey St. El Naranja serves a mix of […]

    • marina writes:
      June 1st, 20111:34 amat

      I visited 05-31-2011 and It is a disappointment the tortilla corn are not home made, the pork is tasteless. The pick Knick tables are dusty the step going upstairs are dangerous and it is in extreme need of landscaping or front yard cleanup. Portable toilets are ugly. Mrs. de la Vega , Please try to do better, Your prices are not up to par for your offering at El Naranjo.

      GD Star Rating
      • Trog writes:
        June 2nd, 20113:52 pmat

        Sorry I’m going to have to completely disagree with you, Marina. I just ate there for the first time myself and it’s pretty much love at first bite! Wild fresh flavors. Maybe you don’t understand what is going on here. The house is being turned into their permanent restaurant, so it’s a work very much in progress. I’m thinking you aren’t from Austin and maybe you might consider letting yourself go a little. ….Step on the wild side. Live life a little on the dirty edge, close to the salt of the Earth. Oh yeah, lighten up and lean heavy on the flavor.

        GD Star Rating
  • john atwater writes:
    February 13th, 201210:05 pmat

    Iliana is hands down, the reason i have devoted my life to cooking Latin food. As a wide-eyed gringo, I got to try her restaurant in Oaxaca and was blown away from fish steamed in herba santa to a atun “prickly pear” sorbet…great little courtyard and she watched as I ate every bite with more and more delight. I wish I lived in Austin! Please go and enjoy this new treasure you have in your city. I will be there soon enough…buen provecho!

    GD Star Rating
  • Gluten-Free Options at Austin Food Carts/Trailers! | jamsangs WordPress writes:
    August 9th, 20125:48 pmat

    […] El Naranjo […]

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