West Seattle restaurants: El Chupacabra expanding to Alki

A sighting of El Chupacabra on Alki is expected soon – but it won’t be fodder for summoning paranormal investigators – it’ll be a reason to dine and drink. Shortly after Casa Feliz closed on the lower level of 2620 Alki Avenue SW (photo above added 4:18 pm), brown paper went up and tips came into the WSB inbox asking “what’s moving in?” This afternoon, we have the answer. We spoke with Aaron Wright, whose El Chupacabra Mexican restaurant and bar is about to celebrate its 5th anniversary on Phinney Ridge – he is hoping to open the Alki branch before that mid-March date. Read on for details:

“I’ve been wanting to expand, and I love Alki Beach,” Wright told us. “I grew up in San Diego on the beach, and it reminds me of the beach area over there. I just think it’s a great location.”

So for those who haven’t been to his El Chupacabra on Phinney Ridge, what’s the atmosphere? “Sort of a Day of the Dead theme,” he began. “A punk-rock-type atmosphere. Everything’s really inexpensive, nothing’s over 10 dollars on the menu. Mission-style burritos and tacos.”

Good news for vegetarians/vegans, too: “We have a pretty good line of veggie and vegan options; we’re using a new vegan cheese and have four different types of fake meat.”

Anything different in the works, compared to the Phinney Ridge menu (which you can see here)? “We’re going to try to do some more fish options. The kitchen in Alki is bigger, and we have a flame griller, so, grilled fish tacos, something like that.”

And a full bar. He’s not planning on live entertainment, though, in case you were wondering (we recall some past performances on the previous establishments’ patio). Wright is expecting the hours to be along the lines of daily lunch, 11:30 am, open till midnight or 2 am, “depending on the season.”

You can see the current El Chupacabra menu on Facebook.

33 Replies to "West Seattle restaurants: El Chupacabra expanding to Alki"

  • rlv January 19, 2011 (2:14 pm)

    This is FANTASTIC news. I can only hope they’ll have just as excellent a jukebox as the Phinney Ridge location. Please?!?!?!

  • JanS January 19, 2011 (2:24 pm)

    this should make an exciting thread in the forums – lol…always glad to see a vacant business filled quickly :)

  • james January 19, 2011 (2:37 pm)

    As an Alki-er I’m always excited for new restaurant options and am sure I’ll be at this place plenty. With that said, I was really hoping for something in that space that wasn’t pizza or SW/Mexican. Three of my West Seattle faves are Matador, Mission and Cactus.

  • westseattledood January 19, 2011 (2:37 pm)

    Humungous cheap margaritas, too! :]

  • April January 19, 2011 (3:18 pm)

    I was about to say we don’t need another mexican place on alki… i recall when Cactus opened shortly after Coyotes, then Coyotes went out of business, then feliz… it’s hard to compete with Cactus, they are excellent. However, if this place is going to be better quality than the former tenant there, and more inexpensive / more burritos & tacos & take-out oriented than Cactus, and more veggie and fish options…. then i say WELCOME TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD!

  • veganite January 19, 2011 (4:05 pm)

    VEGAN OPTIONS! YAY! I hope more restaurants in West Seattle take note.

  • Ding dong January 19, 2011 (4:14 pm)

    El chups is awesome. We used to eat there once or twice a week when we lived in phinney! So glad they will be close again!

  • Kelly Brovan January 19, 2011 (4:52 pm)

    YAY Aaron!!! You will be right down the street from me! We will be regs fer sure. I’m glad you survived driving your VW van down the hills of San Fran at top speeds!

  • Big Red January 19, 2011 (4:55 pm)

    I second the jukebox request and am excited to welcome El Chupacabra (and their yummy margaritas) to the neighborhood!

  • Jo January 19, 2011 (6:21 pm)

    Yeah, for the yummy Mexican place coming.

    Soooo….Does anyone know if Siam Pura still delivers?
    Haven’t walked down that way for far too long.

    • WSB January 19, 2011 (6:41 pm)

      jo, there was a huge banner – might not be visible in the future – plugging Siam Pura’s delivery, hanging over the Casa Feliz facade-top. So I think that means yes.

  • smash the state January 19, 2011 (6:52 pm)

    matador, mission and cactus are all horrible, fake, least-common-denominator mexican places filled with fake tans and woo-woo drinks. while the food at chupe may be only 1/2 step above these plasti-mex joints, it is both
    1. cheap
    2. kinda punk rock

    both are a-ok in my book.

  • Traci January 19, 2011 (7:37 pm)

    YES YES YES!!!!!

  • Rower January 19, 2011 (7:44 pm)

    Cool. Seems like a different market than the Cactus crowd too. Please correct me if I’m wrong but the facebook page boasted a “punk rock cantina”. they will do well with the tattoo shop next door.


    • WSB January 19, 2011 (7:47 pm)

      If you read the story after the jump, proprietor Aaron told me specifically that it has a “punk rock” ‘tude .. TR

  • Kelley O January 19, 2011 (7:59 pm)

    I will miss Casa Feliz. The food & drinks were delicious and the owners were kind and familiar. They have set high standards for any to follow.

  • sabrinaks January 19, 2011 (8:26 pm)

    lovin’ the punk-ish possibilities. bring it!

  • Jo January 19, 2011 (8:37 pm)

    WSB – I noticed the banner from your picture, but wasn’t sure if it was an older picture from your archives or a new one.
    I think I’m more excited about Siam Pura delivering than the Mexican restaurant going in. Well, kinda.

  • Jody Rodgers January 19, 2011 (9:12 pm)

    YES!!! I am a huge fan of El Chupacabra. Wicked margaritas, lots of veggie/vegan options and a punk rock-heavy jukebox. Pretty much all I need. Awesome!

  • displacedcoastie January 20, 2011 (7:45 am)

    Mexican food? I don’t think so. Please change the name to White American’s Vegan take on Mexican food. Funny I don’t recall my wife’s Grandmother (from Tijuana) offering any “vegan options”. I would rather have them take the taco truck from white center and park it there. More authentic. Viva la carne asada

  • Jeff January 20, 2011 (8:15 am)

    Vewry Very good news. Not to harsh on the previous restaurant but it really wasn’t very goo. Looking forward to good Margaratis and apps on the patio during the summer.

  • sun*e January 20, 2011 (8:27 am)

    Their menu looks tasty and inviting. I think this is great news. We tried Casa Feliz one time and the food was terrible! Also, the price they charged us for our drinks was more than the price listed on their menu. We complained and with some confusion on their part, they corrected our bill. We never went back so we welcome a new restaurant moving in… can’t wait!

  • Margaret January 20, 2011 (8:53 am)

    I agree VEGAN options! WOO HOO!

  • twirl-a-whirl January 20, 2011 (1:35 pm)

    My vote goes to the taco truck from White Center; that’s some darn good food, and at a family-friendly price!

  • km January 20, 2011 (2:18 pm)

    which taco truck in white center? where is it located?

  • jose January 20, 2011 (2:33 pm)

    El chupacabra sucks on Phinney ridge and it will suck in Weat Seattle.

  • John January 20, 2011 (2:52 pm)

    I like the punk rock attitude of the ‘chupe, but their margaritas are nowhere near as good as Mission’s.

  • miws January 21, 2011 (8:27 am)

    “El chupacabra sucks on Phinney ridge and it will suck in Weat Seattle.”


    Any other insightful predictions for 2011?



  • Rohr January 21, 2011 (6:41 pm)

    The Taco Truck in White Center is the best one I have been to north of Los Mochis.

  • anonyme January 22, 2011 (9:32 am)

    The White Center taco truck is called ‘La Fondita II’ (don’t know where #1 is) and I love it. Food is great, people are nice, and it’s cheap. It’s located between 16th & 17th sort of across from the DSHS building.

  • grr January 23, 2011 (10:26 pm)

    the new ‘taco truck’ on Fauntleroy by the Produce stand is pretty damn amazing if you haven’t tried. it.

  • rick January 24, 2011 (8:39 am)

    We went on Friday night to Phinney location…and oh my. It was great. The pork is incredible, and the drinks were inexpensive and tasty. Most important…very nice people.Looking forward to Alki location…we will be there.

  • kenair January 25, 2011 (2:29 am)

    Great news. El Chupacabra is a no-frills, unpretentious ‘Amer-Mex’ restaurant in the heart of Phinney Ridge. I’ve eaten there 4 times and always felt like I got my money’s worth.

    It’s a shame that so many places on the beach can’t seem to make it through the winter months. Before I moved here, I used to drive south to eat at the Cuban Restaurant downstairs. It was great until the ‘non-Cubans’ took over and the food wasn’t the same.

    The Bamboo is still my favorite combination of food and drink. Cristo’s and the Swell follow. Pegasus will always be the steady one as well as Dukes.

    I want all these places to succeed so we have walking options here on the beach. Best of luck, El Chupacabra and I hope you are here to stay!

    Alki Homies, support your local businesses. I pay more to get my dry cleaning here rather than driving up the hill. It is worth it to have it for us locally.

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