Date Night: Crios Modern Mexican

After a busy May, we decided June was going to be our opportunity to catch up on some of the items we didn’t get to last month. The truth is, visiting Crios Modern Mexican was not on our radar of places to visit this month. That all changed when were contacted last week about stopping in sometime for food and drinks, which just so happened to coincide perfectly with the Capital Pride Parade this past Saturday.

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The name says it all in this case – Crios is Mexican food with a modern flare. They are located only blocks from Dupont Circle and this past Saturday had a packed brunch then provided a great spot for people to watch the Pride Parade, as it went right by their front door. From the picnic tables that provide for great outdoor seating to the lower-than-expected prices, Crios is a place worth giving a try.

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Down to business: the food is worth the trip. We started with guacamole, which should come as no surprise. The guacamole was a little more unique than we originally expected, since it came garnished with pickled onions. We’ll mention this in a future post, but if you’re looking for a good deal on guacamole, look no further. At $5.50 an order, it’s far less than just about anywhere else.

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Crios is known for their tacos, so we both focused on that portion of the menu. A part of their modern flare is embodied in Al’s order of Buffalo Chicken hard shell tacos, while I went the seafood route and ordered the spicy shrimp soft shell tacos. We were both very pleased with our selections, but one take away we had was that the hard shells were far too good to pass on. I’ll always opt for soft shell, but next time in I’ll be mixing things up. For two tacos, rice, and beans you’ll be spending just below $10 which is an awesome deal in this city.

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We had all but decided to skip dessert when they said “Fried Ice Cream”. As I started to look for an excuse to say “YES!” Al let it slip that she had never tried it before. I couldn’t help but order dessert at that point since she had never experienced this particular culinary phenomenon. The single scoop was plenty for us after filling up already, and I know firsthand that Al is now hooked.


With any good Mexican restaurant, the question of drinks is bound to be brought up. Crios falls into the category of margaritas done right. They don’t overdo it with the sour mix, which normally turns the drink into a very sweet and heavy beverage. Rather, their margaritas seem to favor the basics and are lighter with plenty of flavor. They also have a wide range of craft beer, so for those who favor a cold beer on a hot day, this is a great alternative to the traditional Mexican libation.

It was great luck for us that Crios is located where they are, especially on a day that we already had plans to be in the area. We will gladly be returning, likely for a seat on one of the picnic tables with friends. For those looking for a modern twist to the common Mexican menu give Crios a look, especially since the prices are going to beat some of the other places on your list. Be aware because of the layout it can get noisy inside, but the energy from those around you shouldn’t be a reason to deter you.

We’ll hopefully be checking out their sister restaurants Scion and Nainai’s in the coming months.



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