El Rey

Asbury Park is home to a number of Mexican restaurants, and you’ll literally find them up and down Main Street and throughout the town. Of the many options, El Rey is one of our favorites, particularly during the warmer months when outdoor seating is more ideal. Located on a residential street a few blocks north of the popular Cookman Avenue row of restaurants and bars, El Rey was opened in 2021 by a local family originally from Oaxaca (they’ve also recently expanded to a second location in Belmar). 

The restaurant is BYOB (although their agua fresca is good enough to make you skip the cerveza), and once you step inside, you’ll be drawn to the oversized pot of birria bubbling on the stove. Everything here, from their choriqueso to their carnitas to their quesadilla de maiz, is solid. Also worthy of your attention is their pollo rostizado, which can sell out quickly each day.

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