Cactus Jack’s

Cactus Jack’s

There’s something quite convincing about this tourist-friendly homage to the Tex-Mex saloon. It certainly isn’t due to the décor, which leans heavily on plastic cacti, bogus wagon-wheels and cowboy-hatted waitresses, but the atmosphere is spot on. Reviews

There’s something quite convincing about this tourist-friendly homage to the Tex-Mex saloon. It certainly isn’t due to the décor, which leans heavily on plastic cacti, bogus wagon-wheels and cowboy-hatted waitresses, but the atmosphere is spot on. It’s vaguely menacing when you walk in (if there were a honky-tonk pianist playing, he’ll stop, turn round and stare at you) then raucously entertaining after a couple of drinks, which, when it comes to tequila and other spirits, you can buy by the bottle.

Starters reveal that CJ’s brash charm also, at times, extends to its food. A hearty portion of buffalo wings, smothered in cartoonishly tangy citrus sauce, come served with a blue cheese dressing; while the coconut-rolled prawn fritos are greasy and crunchy enough to satisfy the most ravenous cowboy. Main courses are more questionable. The ‘ranch steak’ is about as authentically Tex-Mex as a London bus – a bland slab of meat with a cluster of lame vegetables and chips. It’s only rescued from total anonymity by a pot of sweet, orange ranchero sauce. You’re on safer ground, it seems, if you order the obvious fare at CJ’s. Chicken and steak combo fajitas are masterfully indulgent, with great piles of meat and sweet roasted vegetables accompanied by dollops of every imaginable Mexican sundry from refried beans to spicy salsa; spread over three plates. You’ll be barely able to make a dent in it all. Such Herculean portions leave you more in the mood for a siesta than a dessert, but the apple chimichanga – a slim, cinnamon-rich pastry-and-apple dessert – defies expectation by being crisply enjoyable, luminous blue pecan ice cream notwithstanding. The same can’t be said for the fresh fruit salad, which (in a transparent cost-cutting measure) is composed almost entirely of watery honeydew melon.

The food at Cactus Jack’s treads a shaky line between the indulgent and the unpleasant, and service remains lamentably inattentive. Yet for some rollicking, boisterous post-work fun and a bottle or two of tequila, it’s an honest place to get your rocks off.


By TimeOut Dubai

Time Out reviews restaurants anonymously and pays for meals. Of course, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or independence of user reviews.

Details

  • Location: Millennium Airport Hotel, Garhoud, Dubai
  • Tel: 04 702 8888
  • Travel: Casablanca Street
  • Website | Send mail

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Cactus Jack’s On The Map

User reviews

ValueAmbienceService
DecorFoodOverall
  • Users voted this restaurant most suitable for: Family friendly

User reviews:

Posted by: Sarah Hopcroft on 18 Jun ' 13 at 07:23
OverallDecorService
FoodAmbienceValue
  • Would you go back to this restaurant? Yes

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

It's a shame that review is the first thing people read !!!!! ery 2-3 weeks for dinner. I also agree that the review is very harsh. Everything is there at CJ's, soft, fun music, great food and efficient and friendly service, amazing variety of food and drinks, indoor and outdoor, sheisha, dance floor, fun environment and theres always a variety of people there. We have dinner and then stay there and hang-out, so I don't think the "pre-clubbing dinner" comment is fair. It's also in the Entertainment Book, so don't forget to provide your feedback form... truely one of Dubai's gems!! Seriously,, the reviewer needs to go back! Sarah (NZ)

Posted by: Audrey on 01 Apr ' 12 at 05:45
OverallDecorService
FoodAmbienceValue
  • Best for: Family friendly
  • Would you go back to this restaurant? Yes

My friends and I always celebrate our birthdays here and while it is not about sophistication and glamour and all that, they sure serve just about the meanest Mexican food ever! I see a lot of familiar faces every time- mostly Americans. And now they serve shisha which adds another reason for us to keep coming back! Just increase the temp of the AC a bit (Brrrr...)

Posted by: Nick on 27 Aug ' 10 at 08:57
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FoodAmbienceValue
  • Would you go back to this restaurant? Yes

as close to good mexican food as Dubai can get...the reviewer has no idea what he is talking about...excellent

Posted by: Graham Law on 21 Feb ' 10 at 17:20
OverallDecorService
FoodAmbienceValue
  • Best for: Family friendly
  • Would you go back to this restaurant? Yes

I don't know if we were lucky or the reviewer was unlucky but for very good value Tex-Mex I think this is the place to go. I found range and quality better than the others I've tried in JBR and Satwa - and menu includes pork so look out for some super sticky ribs

Excellent food, nice bar just let down by a pretty poor location. You don't stumble across Cactus Jacks you have to go there on purpose, but it really is worth the effort

Posted by: DeZ on 13 Jun ' 09 at 17:31
OverallDecorService
FoodAmbienceValue
  • Best for: Family friendly
  • Would you go back to this restaurant? Yes

Is one of the more chilled out places you can find in Dubai, the music does get a bit loud after 11pm but it is none the less great value for money and the food, while not gourmet, is none the less highly satisfactory. The drinks are very reasonably priced and they have a nice outdoor dining space as well.

Would definitely recommend for a nice night out with friends or family.

Posted by: Crischelle Claro on 28 Jan ' 09 at 02:38
OverallDecorService
FoodAmbienceValue
  • Best for: Family friendly
  • Would you go back to this restaurant? Yes

Rubbish... Cactus Jacks offers value for money and the quality of the food itself is more than satisfactory.

Along with reasonably priced drinks, discounts for large groups, good service and entertainment, the overall experience is definitely a good one. If you want 5 star chic restaurants & slick dining then you're on the wrong side of town. Personally, I felt the above review to be a bit harsh and rather negative... then again, we're all entitled to have an opinion.

Pop in for a visit and make up your own mind.

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