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“Old Country Tucson atmosphere”

El Corral Restaurant
Ranked #128 of 2,092 Restaurants in Tucson
Price range: US$1 - US$20
Cuisines: Barbecue, Steakhouse
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Groups, Child-friendly
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Description: In 1915, the Tucson Citizen reported that local developer John Murphey had purchased several thousand acres of property in the foothills of the Catalina Mountains to the north of town. The editors of the newspaper projected the purchase as "folly”, an investment in worthless desert hillsides, never to be recovered. For John Murphey, it took just over a decade to prove his detractors wrong. By the end of the 1920s, homes were being built in the Catalina Foothills neighborhoods, and the distinctive Spanish Colonial and Mission Revival style buildings in the area began to take form. A short distance east of Campbell Avenue a building was built in 1926, possibly the first restaurant/cafe/tavern east of Oracle Road. The El Corral you dine in tonight is located in the same building (with some modifications of course). In 1939, the owner of El Corral Cafe, Leroy C. Perkins subdivided a quarter section of land into Los Ranches Perkins. The first dwellings built were used as guest cottages for a seasonal ranch. In 1946, the business name was changed to El Corral Night Club, owned first by E.H. Bruening. The "Nightclub" name continued through the 1950s. El Corral was purchased again in the 1970s by Agro Land and Cattle Company. The name was simplified to El Corral, but the restaurant has remained in the same building and location. Over the past 40 years, El Corral has continued to serve Tucsonans and their guests some of the best prime rib in Arizona. In 2014, El Corral celebrated its 75th year in existence. This is something we take great pride in. Thank you for joining us this evening, and we hope to serve the community for another 75 years!
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

First time to dine here. We were seated in the front room. Not very exciting... just a big room. I think there were rooms in other parts of the restaurants that probably had more atmosphere... at least I hope so. Spouse and I ordered the prime rib. Very, very average (actually no flavor at all). If we go back will not order the prime rib again.

Fast service, and the food was coming quicker than we could eat it, before the main course was delivered. Guess they were trying to get people in and out quickly.

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Thank vickib28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, Public Relations Manager at El Corral Restaurant, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Hi Vicki,

We're sorry to hear that your prime rib had no flavor! This is not typical for our legendary prime rib. We'll check with the kitchen staff to see if there have been any issues or changes recently. We're happy to hear that the service was quick! Yes, please come on back and ask to be seated in a different dining area; each room has its own feel. Thanks, again, for visiting and we look forward to your next visit!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1 - 5 of 396 reviews

Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

We had heard mixed reviews of el corral. It’s a restaurant that has been around for a LONG time. We decided to try it with some other couples. We were pleasantly surprised by how much we enjoyed it.
The parking lot was crowded so we thought we’d have a long wait. We were pleased to be seated immediately. The place goes on and on so there was room after room for dining. The waitress took our drink order right away. The service was good the entire meal. Our meals all came with a salad which was small but fresh. Here are our entrees and suggestions. Ribs were excellent. Prime rib was good and we asked to have it seared over the mesquite grill. The salmon was also good. The burger and the small filet were disappointing. Both were ordered medium rare and both came out well done without even any pink inside. We were heading to a show so we couldn’t wait for them to redo them. We would order the fish, ribs and prime rib again but not the other Items. The decor was interesting with pictures of old time cowboys and cowgirls that we spent some time having fun identifying.

Thank nurabbit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Everyone else in our party ordered prime rib and they were happy. I ordered a T-Bone and it actually was tough and hard to cut which surprised me. I should have ordered the sirloin. Oh well, win some lose some. The tamale pie was entriguing but nothing Mexican about it. Skip it and order a loaded bake potato instead. This place is steeped in history and I love that it is an old Tucson institution. It was casual and fun to walk around. Service was very good and friendly and the decor wonderfully tacky.

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Thank just1backpack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Came here with family and enjoyed a nice prime rib meal with great service and ambiance. The place was hopping - very popular so make sure you have reservations.

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Thank RHoward2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

We chose El Corral for dinner based on TripAdvisor reviews, and for the first time, we were not thrilled. The restaurant was busy but not packed, and there seemed to be plenty of locals dining there (usually a good sign). The Western decor was great and the staff was friendly. The food, however, was disappointing. The bread was hard, our petite filets were over cooked, and the green beans and fries tasted like they were purchased from the frozen section of the grocery store. With so many other steak houses in Tucson, I would go elsewhere.

Thank JentheLibrarian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, Public Relations Manager at El Corral Restaurant, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Hi Jen,

Thank you for visiting El Corral and for taking the time to leave a review here on TripAdvisor! While we're glad that you enjoyed the decor and staff, we're sorry to hear that the food was underwhelming. We have some work to do. We'll check in with our kitchen staff to see if there have been any issues recently, and we have since reviewed our food prep procedures. Thank you, again, for letting us know about your dining experience. We hope you'll reconsider and give us another try.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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