A culinary guide to Mexico City
Three of the best taquerías
1. Pollo Bruto
TO this electric yellow taco bar in Roma Sur, chef Emiliano Padilla serves flour tortillas with roast chicken prepared in one of three adobos (wet rubs), from spicier to spicier he calls himself the “diablo”. Don’t miss the pirata, a taco stuffed with chicken marinated in a charred Yucatan-style adobo, with a fried cheese crust.
2. Tacos Cocuyos
Queues meander around the corner to this late night pillar Centro Histórico, a legendary taqueria known for staying open long after bars and clubs have closed. Come for the best suadero (brisket) and longaniza (sausage) tacos in town, best enjoyed with loads of red chipotle salsa and habanero guacamole.
3. El Vilsito
At sunset, this mechanical workshop in Narvarte turns into one of the city’s best taquerias for al pastor, the style of taco synonymous with Mexico City that was first brought to the country by Lebanese immigrants. Wait and watch the spit master scrape off juicy pieces of pork, which are then served in a tortilla and topped with pineapple.
Three of the best seafood specialists
1. La Docena
It is a weekend tradition in Mexico City to enjoy long lunches at seafood restaurants such as upscale La Docena, in Polanco. Led by Chef Tomás Bermúdez, who placed the restaurant on the list of Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants in 2019, this oyster-focused establishment offers some of the best seafood dishes in town. These include a spicy shrimp ceviche-style aguachile tatemado, served with crispy corn tostadas.
2. Campo Baja
Picnic-style tables from this restaurant in Roma Norte create a relaxed atmosphere to enjoy tuna tostadas with guacamole and cream, washed down with a michelada (beer with lime juice, served in a glass edged with salt). Once you’ve eaten, head downstairs, where the party continues in the open-air French-style pétanque court.
3. Don Vergas
Once one of the most popular market stalls in the Mercado de San Juan, Don Vergas moved to a relaxed cantina style brick and mortar location in Cuauhtemoc. The menu is inspired by chef Luis Valle’s childhood dishes on the Pacific Coast. Highlights include marlin burritos and callo de hacha – ceviche-style buttery scallops.
Three of the best markets
1. Jamaica market
This market is known to have the best selection of flowers in town, especially during the Day of the Dead festivities in October. But it also has the tastiest green chorizo tacos; ask around to find the unmarked booth, known to insiders as Las Más Altas Montañas.
2. La Merced
On the outskirts of Centro Histórico, grab a take-out cup of tepache – a fermented pineapple-peel-based drink similar to kombucha – before heading to the stalls to sample some of the edible insects, from grasshoppers to maguey worms. .
3. Abasto Central
About an hour from the city center, this is one of the largest markets in the world, where many chefs come to buy their ingredients, from fresh seafood to whole pigs. Explore solo or try a tour with Devoured! or Eat like a local.
Where to stay
Circulo Mexicano has doubles starting at 3,850 pesos (£ 134).
How to do
Modern adventure has a four-night, chef-led group trip to Mexico City starting at $ 3,000 (£ 2,184), excluding flights.
More information: visitmexico.com
Published in the Summer 2021 issue of National Geographic Traveler Food
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