8.04.2011

Cozymel’s Coastal Mex

2171 Rosecrans Avenue
El Segundo, CA 90245
(310) 606-5464
www.cozymels.com
twitter.com/CozymelsMex


Parking: Nice Free Lot
Days: Monday-Friday
Time: 4-7pm, all night Tuesday!
Drink Deals: $3.25 Clasico Margarita, $2.25 Domestic Draft Beer (18oz), $3.25 Specialty Draft Beer (18oz)
Food Deals: Appetizers from $3.25-$8.75

It was a Tuesday night; AP & I had just been to Second Story’s Happy Hour (link) and it was already 7pm. What to do? Happy Hour was over almost everywhere else. Luckily, with a little research, we’d discovered an all-night Tuesday Happy Hour nearby at Cozymel’s Coastal Mex.


Walking into Cozymel’s, I was reminded of the sit-down Mexican chain restaurant, Chi-Chi’s, popular in my Midwestern youth. From the outside, Cozymel’s, like Chi-Chi’s, is designed to look like an adobe-style mission and from the inside; there are plenty of swell-priced food options that appeal to a mass audience. Cozymel’s is a chain itself, but only has restaurants in 7 seemingly random locations – La Jolla, CA; Grapevine, TX; Little Rock, AR; Brentwood, TN; Wheaton, IL; and Westbury, NY.

Happy Hour is served in the bar area only, but this is fine because it’s huge – at least 8 high-tables, 4 low-tables with bench seating, and a row of actual bar seating. It was pretty crowded when we arrived, but we did manage to snag one of the high-top tables – complete with a little touch-screen computer at the table. The computer had a variety of functions including calling the server to the table, hosting games that would be good for bored children (and AP :), and my favorite – a bill paying system where you could split the check, swipe your card(s) and be on your merry way!


Cozymel’s Happy Hour features $3.25 Clasico margaritas, $2.25 18oz. Domestic Drafts, and $3.25 18oz. Specialty Drafts and on the food side – a variety of options form $3.25 to $6.75. I first ordered a $3.25 Clasico Margarita, but then quickly noticed that no one else seemed to be ordering drinks or food from the Happy Hour menu. I’m still not sure if they didn’t know about the all-night Happy Hour that night or if these folks just opted for moderately priced dinners instead (average entrée price was about $15).


Clasico Margarita & Dos Equis Amber (18oz) - $3.25 each

I did see why they might have ordered some of the specialty Margaritas – the $3.25 Clasico was a-ok for being $3.25, but after seeing someone else order the $10 Cinco Sampler (Five sample-sized frozen margaritas including Primo, Mango, Raz Rita, Blue Peach and Clásico), I wanted it! However, I also wanted to stay on budget, so for drink #2, I enjoyed an 18oz. goblet of Dos Equis Amber for only $3.25!



Complimentary Chips & Salsa

We had already eaten fondue and hummus at Second Story, but didn’t decline Cozymel’s complimentary chips & salsa and we event tried an order of the $3.75 Bean & Cheese Nachos. I had thought Nachos were served pretty standard everywhere – a stack of tortilla chips covered with fixings. Not at Cozymel’s, where 8 individual chips were laid out, loaded with beans and cheese and served with a garnish of lettuce and jalapenos and a scoop each of guacamole sour cream and salsa! Very interesting presentation and actually quite filling – though the chips were so dense that you either had to use a fork and knife to eat them or use a 2nd complimentary chip to hold the weight of the Nacho!


Bean & Cheese Nachos - $3.75

Other Happy Hour food options included Chile Con Queso or a Cheese Quesadilla for $3.25; Chicken Flautas, Tableside Guacamole, and Chicken or Shrimp Flameado for $5.75; and Chicken or Beef Nachos or Quesadillas for $6.75, and a Sampler for $8.75 (I’m guessing it features a mix of the apps).

Overall, Cozymel’s seems a little generic to me, and not really the kind of place I would want to spend a long evening. That said, it does feel like the kind of place PERFECT for either a) getting totally drunk on cheaply-priced beer while watching a soccer game in the bar area or b) as a stop on a Happy Hour Tour given its walking distance proximity to so many other spots featuring Happy Hour – PF Chang’s, McCormick & Schmick’s, Fleming’s, Paul Martin’s, Il Fornaio, and Lido Di Manhattan Ristorante & Bar.

I feel a Happy Hour Tour coming on!!




--JB

Rating: 3.5 Martinis

Cozymel's Mexican Grill on Urbanspoon

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