Food & Drink

El Patio offers delicious Mexican cuisine along U.S. 501

By Emily Smith

For The Sun News

El Patio Burrito Jalisco
El Patio Burrito Jalisco

In a few years, El Patio in Conway will celebrate two decades of bringing delicious Mexican cuisine to that side of the waterway. This restaurant has become known for their affordable prices and quality food, plus fast and friendly service.

With a rustic look inside and out, El Patio has the feel of a hacienda without being in your face about it. The fountain outside bubbles with water while the fountain inside is filled with vibrant flowers, complementing the earthy colors on the wall. The décor plays into the theme with some ironwork and a variety of paintings from plants to farms, plus a few televisions for good measure.

The menu is extensive and worth spending some time going through unless you already have a game plan in mind. For the person who simply wants their fill of enchiladas or chimichangas, El Patio has made it possible to mix food up in their al la carte section, or even make their own combination meal. Kids ten and under also have a menu of their own.

The lunch menu is available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and has a number of slightly smaller versions of popular meals like the steak burrito and taco salad, with not one dish costing more than $10. There are also thirteen lunch plates that come with a side of Mexican rice and refried beans.

Beef, pork, chicken, seafood, and vegetarian take up the rest of the menu, with fajitas having their own special section. The special dinners are where guests will find the popular dishes such as El Patio’s Nacho Supreme or Quesadilla Grande. Each part of the menu also has its own unique dish, like the Carne Asada for beef-lovers or the Camarones a la Diabla, deviled shrimp.

Another impressive dish from this Conway favorite is the Burrito Jalisco, a massive tortilla stuffed with chunks of pork, refried beans, vegetables, and avocado. It comes with a thin layer of salsa on top and is served on a bed of El Patio’s wonderful Mexican rice.

If diners have room after gorging on delicious food, El Patio does have a few desserts to satisfy the sweet tooth. There is also the Acapulco Bar in a room separate from the main dining area for adults to enjoy. Happy Hour is every day from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. with drink and appetizer specials.

On top of all the hard work the team at El Patio has put in, they also provide specials and events during holidays, no matter what it is. Plus every Sunday is the El Patio buffet from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. so the longevity of this restaurant comes as no surprise. Even during lunch on a weekday, workers and regulars fill El Patio with laughter and hot plates.

If You Eat

What | El Patio

Where | 2394 Highway 501, Conway

Hours | 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. daily

Information |, 843-347-6984