finally made it to mercadito last night (B btwn 11th and 12th). i called earlier in the day to see what the deal would be in terms of a wait-- and the woman who picked up the phone informed me that they now are accepting reservations! i was able to secure an 8 o'clock reservation for 4 for later that night.
the restaurant was pretty full, but our rather large table was waiting for us in the backroom. we were seated after our entire party arrived, and were treated to the "shpeil" (sp?) by the friendly waitress about how to order, sharing, and specials. we ended up getting 4 different types of tacos (upgraded to 4 on a plate, rather than 3): carne (beef), pollo (chicken), camaron (shrimp w/avocado), and a special: chorizo w/ manchego cheese. we also got an order of picados, the traditional guac app, and the fried oysters. oh- and margaritas: i had the pepido (cucumber) and then later, the house margarita.
everything was delicious. favorites definitely were the carne and the camaron tacos and the fried oyster dish. the chicken was a little bland and the chorizo was ground (i would have preferred a different cut). the oysters were fried to perfection and a perfect consistency throughout. the margaritas were great- the pepido had the refreshing taste of cucumber and a hint of spice that kicked it up a little bit. service was attentive and accommodating; they let us linger over our drinks well after being done with the meal (there were other empty tables by this point) and the decor and music were also great and festive.
we had more than enough food- eventhough the portion sizes appear to be small, they are incredibly filling. i can't tell you how much it all came to (i didn't pay) but the prices were definitely reasonable (nothing was more than $11).
all in all, i would definitely recommend this place and i would return. especially now that you can make a reservation and not have to wait an hour and a half!
thanks for the recs!