Tucked in with all the other bars and restaurants where Washington Street meets the ocean, Cabo Cantina is a small Mexican hangout that gives you a more sports-centered experience than the nearby Baja Cantina. Downstairs is more about drinks and the bar, while the upstairs is where the true sports fans should head. The bright primary color decorations plaster the walls with a near-equal number of drink specials and happy hour adverts; you never go wondering what beer-and-taco combo is on sale. However, if you shift your eyes upward of the posters, you’ll notice a line of televisions that puts your local sports-themed watering hole to shame.
The upstairs has an outdoor deck area, while the inside is lined with TVs. The outside area, with a flame pit and decent view of the ocean, is great to relax but constant technological problems and glare prevent it from being the ideal spot to watch the game. Your best bet is to snatch a table inside where the view is clear. Downstairs, options for viewing are limited, but is great for taking a time-out and mingling with other beach locals and bar hoppers.
The biggest surprise comes with the quality of the Mexican food. It’s by no means a top-tier place for quality tortilla-wrapped eats, but for a bar/cantina it doesn’t disappoint. An extra tip, swing by on a Saturday or Sunday morning to recover from the night’s festivities with a Hangover Burrito and unlimited Bloody Marys. Or try the Mexican Jumping Bean Coffee, a Hispanic take on Irish coffee.
The one downside to the Cantina is the noise levels and the crowd in the evenings. For some mid-day or early games, it’s perfect. Once the sun sets on the beach horizon, the place gets packed with Venice bar flies. If that’s your cup of tequila then enjoy, but others may prefer a less raucous environment. Also, avoid the Giant Margarita. Unless you want to show off to friends that you can hold a giant glass of alcohol, it’s not worth the $19. Go with the numerous shot/beer combos and check out the Happy Hour between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. For good food, drinks and sports, the Cabo Cantina is one fiesta worth checking out.
30 Washington Blvd.
Venice, CA 90292