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  • Uptown Eaton

EL TSUNAMI TAQUERIA Y MARISCOS - 130 W Layton Ave. | Milwaukee

Illuminated "tsunami seafood & mexican restaurant" sign on a building facade at night.

Milwaukee's culinary landscape boasts a plethora of Mexican restaurants, yet stumbling upon one that specializes in oceanic delights is a rarity. Enter El Tsunami Taqueria y Mariscos, with its vibrant blue facade standing out amidst the sea of eateries near Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport. This culinary gem embraces a lively aquatic theme and offers a distinctive menu centered around seafood. Intrigued by the promise of a seafood adventure unlike any other, I ventured inside.

A plate of roasted jalapeños stuffed with cheese and wrapped in bacon,


El Tsunami's menu is a vibrant canvas of Mexican culinary delights, spanning from traditional classics to daring innovations. One standout dish of interest was the octopus and shrimp ceviche, a rarity in the Midwest. While the seafood was expertly cooked and generously portioned, the ceviche lacked the expected citrus zest, resulting in a slightly drier texture. Nonetheless, it still showcased the kitchen's proficiency with seafood.


The true surprise came with the El Tsunami Special, a creation recommended by a friend. These plump jalapeno peppers stuffed with shrimp and wrapped in crispy bacon were a revelation, boasting bold flavors and a whimsical presentation that left a lasting impression.


To round out our meal, we indulged in steak tacos, a simple yet satisfying option adorned with fresh cilantro and onions. Though not revolutionary, they hinted at the possibilities for future visits, especially to explore the seafood taco selection.


Overall, El Tsunami's menu offered a delightful spectrum of Mexican tastes, blending tradition with innovation. From the unexpected delight of the El Tsunami Special to the classic appeal of the steak tacos, it was an experience worth savoring and a promise of further culinary adventures.


A close-up of a taco topped with chopped beef, onions, and cilantro on a plate, with a wedge of lime on the side.

Although service at El Tsunami was efficient and prompt, it ultimately lacked the personal touch necessary to elevate the dining experience from good to exceptional. Despite our needs being met in a timely manner, there was a noticeable absence of genuine engagement, with the interaction feeling more routine than warm. Surprisingly, it was another staff member who managed to inject enthusiasm and warmth into our visit, enhancing our overall impression of the establishment.


The ocean-themed exterior of El Tsunami is striking, leaving a lasting impression on visitors. However, it's the unexpected delights like the El Tsunami Special that truly stand out in memory. With a focus on seafood-centric offerings, El Tsunami occupies a distinctive niche in Milwaukee's culinary scene. The presence of other establishments under the same ownership further reinforces its viability. Despite some areas for improvement in service and attention to detail, El Tsunami has the potential to establish a lasting legacy in the city.


El Tsunami Taqueria y Mariscos offers a tantalizing glimpse into the world of Mexican seafood cuisine, albeit with some room for improvement. While the food showcases flashes of brilliance, particularly with innovative creations like the El Tsunami Special, the overall dining experience falls slightly short of expectations. Nonetheless, with its unique offerings and strategic location, El Tsunami holds promise for those seeking a seafood-infused twist on traditional Mexican fare.



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