We were sitting in the sun on the sidewalk patio outside Reygades’s flagship restaurant, Rosetta; we could see the perpetual line outside her pastry shop, Panadería Rosetta, across the street. Mexico City, Mexico A world-class hub of food and culture, so close and so very cheap. “To marry you.” The table murmured its assent. On a Sunday morning in June, a long line stretches out the door of El Cardenal, one of four branches … I stopped for a moment to watch one of the many street vendors along Mexico City’s Paseo de la Reforma prepare this transportable snack served out of a cup: layering roasted corn, mayonnaise, cheese, hot pepper and lime and all over again to the top. This spot stocks an incredible array of mezcals (many of them sourced from their own distillery) to sample but be sure and ask for the buttery, crunchy, corn-like ant eggs (genus Liometopum), each about the size of a ball bearing and harvested from the root of the agave. The Phoenix … Tornés has messy, longish hair, sleepy eyes, and a guru vibe. Carnitas are made from bit-sized pieces … Food in Mexico City is farm-to-table inventive, defined by fresh flavors and unexpected combinations (crickets and tacos! Departures is published by Meredith Corp. and owned by American Express. Often, of course, they are one and the same, but not always. I had experienced a few mezcal cocktails at hipster boites in Atlanta, but tasting this indigenous, artisanal liquor in its country of origin was a revelation. Mostly, though, I came to eat. Mexico also has a vibrant craft beer scene. Watch Andrew Zimmern prepare roasted red snapper in banana leaves with fresh Mexican sausage. All users of our online services subject to Privacy Statement and agree to be bound by Terms of Service. A dusting of powdered chicatana (flying) ant, coffee and costeno chile mayonnaise transported street food to the realm of haute cuisine. Meredith Corporation Travel & Leisure Group is not Gral. Departures is a trademark of American Express Marketing & Development Corp. The grill describes itself as “contemporary American with local influence” and that’s a pretty nifty way of encapsulating the mix of the familiar with a touch of the exotic that exhausted international travelers sometimes yearn for after a long day of adventure and street food. I crowded into a tiny eating area at Pescadería El Puerto de Alvarado, a stall in the Centro’s San Juan Market, for sweet, briny “chocolate” clams, plucked straight from the ice, and I settled into the plush, ocean-liner-like dining room of Carmela y Sal, in tony Polanco, for pejelagarto, a toothy garfish native to Tabasco, served as a “taco” on crisp, cold disks of cabbage. Pick a Neighborhood. From left: Jesús Tórnes, owner of Expendio de Maíz Sin Nombre; the restaurant's daily special. “Máximo is one of the hottest restaurants in the city,” Olvera says, “so the crowd is … We sell our authentic nixtamal tortillas and corn chips to … Though … Located in the Centro, Bósforo has a legendary collection of mezcals from around Mexico. Travelers are flocking to this bustling city and it's easy to see why. The food scene in Mexico City is one of the most exhilarating on the planet; some people come here just to eat. Between this tableau and the street are two picnic tables for customers. Jésus Tornés’s sidewalk restaurant is unlike any other—an adventure in rural Mexican food and beyond— and is worth giving yourself over to. Chef Gabriela Ruiz Lugo brings her inimitable soulful cooking to an upscale space in tony Polanco. Tacos de carnitas. CICATRIZ Absolute perfection. Straw baskets containing herbs and vegetables hang from the ceiling. © 2020 Discovery or its subsidiaries and affiliates. Making nixtamal is an ancient and elemental process, but it is also enjoying a kind of hipster renaissance as a reaction against industrialized foods, particularly the more than 2,000 tortillas that each Mexican is said to consume every year. All rights reserved. Beirut. But, Elena Reygades told me, something has definitely changed in the past decade or so. There are Great World Cities and there are Great Eating Cities. If the food and style these places create do not seem sufficiently “Mexican,” well, that opens a set of metaphysical questions about place and culture and “authenticity” that confronts nearly every modern traveler in our ever-shrinking, ever-more-similar world, whether to New Orleans or Paris, or Indianapolis, or Minsk. Does anybody have a spare person?’ We try to help each other through the maze,” said Lindeman. At Meroma, Mercedes Bernal uses immaculate Mexican ingredients for dishes that draw inspiration from all over the world—including something as simple as Caesar salad—best enjoyed on a leafy balcony that overlooks the sidewalks of Roma Norte. While the better-know Mexican liquor, tequila, is by law only distilled from the blue agave, mezcal can be sourced from the more than 30+ varieties of agaves so the flavor varies wildly. David Lida leads excellent tours focused on themes ranging from street food to culture. The hopping Fonda Mayora bistro in the hipster-thick Condesa neighborhood is the perfect Saturday afternoon stop for people- and dog-watching (and a little sidewalk shopping too, since a parade of vendors offer up everything from tunics to rugs to local honey while you eat). In recent years, she said, the influx of visitors and a more intimately connected food world, in which ideas and inspirations rocket around the planet via Instagram, have broken down some of those barriers and ushered in more globally minded restaurants. There are also bike lanes and boutiques and bookstores. Mexicans celebrate the other protein. In a megalopolis of 22 million people, the vast majority of whom live on the wrong side of a massive economic divide, the reality is far messier. and flair. Her … The Soumaya Museum was designed by the Mexican architect Fernando Romero and is one of the most visited in Mexico City. In Mexico City you’ll find interesting fusions of traditional cuisine and new techniques, from foams to craft cocktails and the same kind of sophisticated food that trend-scouting urbanites hunt for in New York, Paris or Rome. The beautiful dining room at Rosetta, Elena Reygades’s flagship, is the ideal setting for her deft fusion of Italian and Mexican cuisines. For me, it was a warm, fresh tortilla piled with squash blossoms, pepitas, hominy, and the sharp, almost minty herb hoja santa. The dish's earthy flavors were the perfect complement to the bracing mezcal Téllez brought out to accompany. In 2010 UNESCO named traditional Mexican cuisine an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. After a few days, I felt a bit like a tamale myself. was the consummate host. Mexico City is a brilliant choice for foodies anxious to experience the high to low, homegrown to flown-in dining options in this deliciously diverse city. This in itself was a kind of paradox, because it was also unlike any place I’ve ever eaten. Meredith Corporation Travel & Leisure Group is not enough to have great food going to get into my 11-course cusine... Be like, ‘ I got all these women are friends and of... Tours focused on themes ranging from street food at this high-end resort-in-the-city “ Master Enrique! 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