Even if you’re not staying at Las Alcobas, this colorful spot serving upscale cuisine inspired by recipes from various regions of Mexico is a noteworthy stop. The spicy mole enchiladas with squash blossom filling and grilled plantains were delectable, as was the cornmeal-crusted salmon served with clams marinated in a chile pepper sauce. At the end, complimentary sweets came on an eye-catching rotating plate. Chef Martha Ortiz’s buzzy restaurant draws in locals and tourists alike with its high-quality fare, convenient location and lively atmosphere.
Anatole France 100. Tel. (52) 55-3300-3999
The charismatic husband-and-wife team Jared Reardon and Sonia Arias are the driving force behind this gourmet establishment. Locally sourced ingredients are used to create contemporary Mediterranean-inspired dishes. The chef’s menu is highly recommended. Attractively presented dishes were served at a choreographed pace. Our appetizer of grilled shrimp on a slightly sweet lemon-and-chabacano (a native apricot-like fruit) purée, topped by a slice of jamón serrano, was a highlight. And the artichoke hearts accompanied by toasted almonds, green apple slivers and creamy quinoa are not to be missed. Mains included a pavé of salmon with a shiitake mushroom risotto and black-truffle salsa, and fresh seared tuna served with a lobster, lemon, carrot and black bean salsa. The stark gray interior could have used some artwork, and the dim lighting did not make reading the menu an easy task, but the delicious fare and attentive staff compensated for these flaws.
Newton 88. Tel. (52) 55-5255-4409
After training at Pujol for a time, talented young chef Jorge Vallejo opened this jewel box restaurant, discreetly located on a quiet block perpendicular to the main Avenida Presidente Masaryk. The narrow dining room features a minimalist décor with light wood paneling and clay pottery. Despite the restaurant’s being full, the noise level never irritated. Vallejo puts fresh produce, primarily sourced from his own kitchen garden nearby, at the forefront of the menu. While a multicourse tasting menu with optional wine pairings is available, we chose to order à la carte. The sweet shrimp wrapped in zucchini slices over a citrusy squash blossom, chile pepper and onion salsa was a standout. The cactus ceviche with beetroot and orange was also a delightfully tangy starter. There is no wrong choice among the half-dozen main courses. We chose the braised pork jowl with winter lettuces and a tamale-like corn puff, and a tasty dish of chilacayote squash in a homemade mole with basil microgreens. The mamey panna cotta with sweetened corn crumble and a luscious mamey seed ice cream made for a perfect dessert.
Newton 55. Tel. (52) 55-5280-2680