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Jovita's - 18 Reviews - 1619 S First St, Austin, TX - Local Favorite Reviews - Phone (512) 447-7825


1619 S First St (at Annie Street)
Austin, TX 78704
(512) 447-7825
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Jovita's - Austin, TX
Jovita's - Austin, TX
Jovita's - Austin, TX
Jovita's - Austin, TX


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You should give Jovita's another try. The menu has been changed, the waitstaff has been tweaked, and there is a new philosophy behind the presentation brought to you. The (new) ...


In a town of many amazing Mexican places to eat, Jovita's is definitely not one of them. Their food is horrible compared to what you can get within a mile radius, the drinks are ...

A change for the better 7/19/2011

You should give Jovita's another try. The menu has been changed, the waitstaff has been tweaked, and there is a new philosophy behind the presentation brought to you. The (new) management is well aware that this place used to be a staple in South Austin and are trying very hard to bring it back to it's prominence. I love this place and it's feel home atmosphere, but I don't have a band in my living room, so therefore I go to Jovita's. I have hung out with all the employee's after work and they talk about making this place great for hours (after work). Don't give up on this place, come in, appreciate the atmosphere, ask your server what's good on the menu, which is most everything now, and sit back and relax, like you have a band in your living room. more

Stay Away Like The Plague 7/30/2009

In a town of many amazing Mexican places to eat, Jovita's is definitely not one of them. Their food is horrible compared to what you can get within a mile radius, the drinks are more watered down than a swimming pool and the owner and the employees have an attitude that is unnecessary. Get over yourself and take a lesson from the other cool, fun places in town. Cons: Crappy Service, Crappy Drinks, Horrible Food more

Worst service in Austin 3/15/2009

Went to Jovita's about 6 weeks ago. It took over 30 minutes to get my food after placing my order. And there is no way to catch a buzz here, unless you get your own beer from the bar, or go out and drink your own beer in the parking lot. The service is horrible. Menu was changed to some frou-frou fare; not the good Tex-Mex they used to feature. I said I would never come back here to eat. Pros: Great music on Thursday night Cons: Miserable, nearly non-existent service. Goofy menu. more

OK Austinites, LA transplants excluded, Jovitas is the shi@. 1/17/2009

If you are looking for a REAL South Austin, take no BS kinda place, this is it. The reviews of slow service and a ""scary staff"" only high light the fact that those reviews were from out of towner's, or north siders. The flavor and vibe of this cultural hub can't be matched. The new chef, Cesar, takes great pride in providing authentic mexican fare. If you are looking for tex-mex, go elsewhere. Pros: Um, Everything Cons: not much parking but a friendly lot attendant to guide you to a spot. more

New talent 9/14/2008

In response to all of the bad reviews from the past years: The executive and sous chef are new and they're doing a great job reinventing the menu and turning around the restaurant's past reputation. When my friends and I went, we had the drink special of the day which was a hibiscus margarita. I like to try new things but I was skeptical... and proved wrong. The drink was amazing and I've been back several times and never been disappointed. The queso is an amazing way to start the meal. I've been several times and recommend getting the special every time. The chile relleno and fajitas are really good, but I can't resist stealing bites off of the plate of whoever ordered the special. I finally got smart and started ordering it for myself. The tres leches cake is absolute heaven and our table of 7 devoured 2 (huge) pieces. The chefs are passionate and innovative and they enjoy feedback on the new dishes they create. more

Try it again 8/23/2008

I had a wonderful dinner tonight at Jovita's. The new chef (nice guy - seemed young to be the chef) greeted us at the door and invited us to try his new recipe for sopapillas- my bite-sized sampling was delicious - served with a carmel sauce instead of the traditional honey. For an appetizer, we ordered queso for our chips. It was smooth and yummy. I only wanted something light so I ordered the tortilla soup. It was the best I have ever had! My friends ordered the tres leches cake and I just HAD to have a bite - and then another, and another because it was so good - different than I had tasted before - not so drenched -just lots of flavor. I plan on going back when I am more hungry so that I can try some of the rest of the menu. more

disgusting 7/11/2008

my parents and i ate at jovita's tonight for the first time and will NEVER return. being true austinites, we enjoy supporting local restaurants, but we were more than disappointed in our experience at jovita's. upon arrival, our gut instinct told us to turn around and walk out, but we decided to stay and try the food anyway. the tacos were greasy and tasteless, the taquitos were chewy and lacking chicken and the lettuce and pico de gallo were both brown and nasty. our waiter was inattentive, the manager looked slimy and walked around chewing on a straw- truly revolting, and the head chef clearly lacks talent (he can sell t-shirts and strut around in his apron, but he cannot cook). this meal was by far the biggest waste of $26. and take down your political signs. you run a ""restaurant"", not campaign headquarters for a flaming left wing politician. more

From bad to worse 4/11/2008

This was my first time to go to Jovita's and it was for my Wife's birthday. The food was horrible, I would take Taco Cabana over going to Jovita's ever again. First off they charge $2.50 for chips and salsa and you don't even get refills on them. The food was bland and overall low quality. Pretty much no one in my 10 person party liked their food. To top it off the service was horribly slow which wasn't the waitress' fault because they were seriously under staffed. Overall, not a good experience. Pros: not much...ambiance Cons: food, price, quality, service more

Not so great these days 8/15/2006

The food has always been bad at Jovita's. Not really Tex-Mex or Mexican, just bad. Slow service too! As of late even the music is going down hill............lots of no names that don't fit in the Austin live music line up. Come on Jovita's you can do better. Pros: Location Cons: Food, Service, Quality more

Bad attitude! 4/19/2006

I've been in South Austin my entire life, and have loved Jovita's. Ever since Freddie'e oepend up next door the attitude and Jovita's has gotten really much so I was yelled at because the owner THOUGHT I was trying to park in his parking lot, to then secretly scurry over to Freddie's. The owner has gotten rude, and so has the staff. They've forgotten the South Austin charm - attitude. Pros: music Cons: food, service more

Slow Service 10/5/2005

Co-workers and I went for a casual lunch with a new employee. The service was execptionally slow and usually had errors in taking our order. The food left much to be desired. There are too many good places to go for lunch that we will not return. The atmosphere looks like it would be a good place after work. more

Nice place but awful food 8/17/2005

I went and saw Bill Kirchen here and he was great as always. But the food was awful, close to inedible. We had some nachos with beef and they were just gristle and grease. Ugh. If I hadn't been starving and coming down from a few drinks I don't think I would have even touched them. Good thing that place is dark or else I would be having nightmares about the sight of those nachos... Service was wanting... But the crowd and atmosphere was to my liking: not to small or large a venue, full but not crowded. My advice, go for the band, get a drink, EAT AT HOME!!! Pros: the music, location Cons: the food, service more

Love It 6/27/2005

The food is great and the music is Texas. You will see children dancing with grandparents! more

Loved it enough 6/5/2005

Im big on Mexican food and when it came down to throw a dinner party i decided on this place b/c i love the food. Enchiladas are great and so are the rice and beans and fajitas. To my knowledge they replaced the cook so for the old reviews, i think the food is great. Great atmosphere. I am under 21 (20) and was told the drinks at the bar were a little pricey. more

Too Good To Be True 5/19/2004

Jovita's was an exceptional dining experience as far as atmosphere and music were concerned. There was nothig better than watching legendary Flaco Jimenez in such an intimate setting while enjoying a cold beer....BUT! Fake tortillas (which is status quo in Austin apparently), dry fajitas, ranch style beans passed off as ""ranchero"" and bland rice made for one horrible Tex-Mex dinner. I'll admit...I'm biased and spoiled as I was raised with real Tex-Mex in my home, but this was ridiculous. I'll go back for the music and drinks, but I'll deffinitely stick to the chips and salsa. Pros: Atmosphere, Music, Cold Beer Cons: , Slow Service, Very Bad Tex-Mex more

read before you go! 7/28/2003

We went here while visiting Austin because of these reviews. Partly disappointed and partly pleased. We have had better food and much better service. I LOVE hot and spicy but man this salsa was on FIRE! and I can eat hot peppers plain! Good variety of foods (trad and texmex and veggie)and GREAT music. The wait staff was definitely strange and moody. The really helpful ones only spoke spanish - ok cuz I can too but could be a problem for others. Great place to hang out but dont go just for the food or the service. Really loud - cant talk when band is on and there were a group of little kids running through the place and screaming the whole time we were there. Margaritas were $5.50 to $7.50 which is really high for the small glass you get. So go for fun but be prepared. Pros: great music, good atmoshphere, decent food Cons: drinks expensive, rude wait staff, a bit loud more

Unique Dining Atmosphere 8/10/2002

Jovita's is a restaurant like no another. It provides a fun and unique experience like no other. The atmosphere is uncomparable, just like the food. As I have heard numerous times, its the best Mexican food north of the border. The music is wide in variety; creating a great place to sit back and relax, or dance the night away. The service is like no other. It may not be typical, but will definitely provide a great evening, or maybe even better lunch. Lunch time has often been my favorite. Fast, extra friendly service with unbelievable lunch specials and relaxing atmosphere. A place that will always make your day. I highly recommend Jovita's! more

mex-tex style 6/12/2002

one of my favorite austin tex-mex restaurants..relaxed beat...casual, eclectic, friendly crowd...tejano and country at its combined best, EXCELLENT roasted green hot sauce served with chips--occasionally offered, wish it were 100% of the time...I'd go for this sauce alone! sometimes service is slow, especially at the bar...i've stood and felt ignored while wait persons cashing out Pros: inexpensive, free music, relaxed atmosphere Cons: slo service at times more
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Menu for Jovita's

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  • In Short
    With better than average Mexican fare and a well-stocked bar, Jovita's, with its funky mural of Cesar Chavez, sits in the heart of South Austin. Bands play on the beautiful...

  • 2/26/2007 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Tue-Fri 11am-10:30pm Sat 11am-11pm Sun 11am-8pm
  • Payments:

    American Express, Visa, Master Card
  • Neighborhoods: