Friday, June 14, 2024

Mexico News Daily staff picks 2023: Food and drink

Ready to perk up your palate and savor the many flavors of Mexico? We are delighted to share favorite dishes and drinks curated by the Mexico News Daily team.

Dish: Alambre (Zihuatanejo)

Alambre barbecue
Alamabre is a northern dish, but is also popular in other parts of Mexico like Pacific beach town Zihuatanejo. (Wikimedia Commons)

Developed in Northern Mexico, this delicious dish of chopped meats and veggies prepared on the grill is very popular in Zihuatanejo. My favorite is steak, al pastor, bacon, bell pepper and onion — swaddled in melted cheese and served alongside flour tortillas. “Alambre” means “wire,” as wire skewers once were a popular way to cook it.

Recommended by Andy Altman-Ohr, staff writer

Dish: Mole (Los Pacos, Oaxaca City)

Mole tasting at Los Pacos
If you’re in Oaxaca, check out the mole tasting at Los Pacos. (Los Pacos)

A traditional feast for the senses for those looking to sample one of the seven regional moles in Oaxaca. Come for the complimentary mole tasting and stay for the delicious main courses and homely atmosphere of this family restaurant just north of the city center.

Recommended by Gordon Cole-Schmidt, contributing writer

Drink: Súper Lupe (Cervecería Hércules, Querétaro)

Súper Lupe beer
A hoppy IPA from Hércules brewery in Querétaro. (Cervecería Hércules)

Hércules makes a lot of great beers, but my favorite is the brewery’s flagship IPA, Súper Lupe. Very hoppy and refreshing! Want to know more about the Quéretaro brewery, check out this interview with the head brewer.

Recommended by Peter Davies, chief staff writer

Drink: Lágrimas Negras (Cervecería Rámuri, Tijuana)

Lágrimas Negras beer
A hearty stout from Rámuri brewery in Tijuana. (Cervecería Rámuri)

This is one of my favorite artisanal beers in Mexico, which borrows its name from this song. It’s a dark and heavy chocolatey oatmeal stout (with quite a high alcohol content, so be careful!), the perfect beer for chasing away the cold, produced by the Rámuri brewery in Tijuana.

Recommended by Sarah DeVries, contributing writer

Dish: Empanadas de jaiba (Mazatlán)

You may have had empanadas before, but what about blue crab empanadas? (Shutterstock)

The combination of blue crab wrapped in corn dough and fried brings me straight back to eating crab cakes and hush puppies with my grandmother in Virginia. This Sinaloan dish is great on it’s own or with your favorite “salsa marisquera” (seafood salsa).

Recommended by Rose Egelhoff, editor

Dish: Tacos de barbacoa y consomé (El Pato Barbacoa y Mixiote, San Miguel de Allende)

Tacos de barbacoa
El Pato’s barbacoa tacos are a must-taste. (El Pato San Miguel de Allende)

For me, El Pato is the epitome of authentic Mexico. Rich, flavorful, carefully prepared food, friendly, warm service, and a family-friendly ambiance. You can’t go wrong with their short and simple menu, but if you are sick, hungover, or just tired, try their consomé (spicy bone broth); it will bring you back to life.

Recommended by Amber Nieto, sales manager

Drink: El Tejón wines (Viñedo El Tejón, San Luis Soyatlán, Jalisco)

Rows of grapevines
Viñedos El Tejón grows a wide variety of grapes on 26 hectares of land near San Luís Soyatlán, Jalisco. (John Pint)

Exquisite wines grown on the shores of Lake Chapala, “as natural as you will ever find.”

Dish: Tortas ahogadas (Guadalajara)

Don’t miss trying Guadalajara’s unique “drowned sandwiches.”

Recommended by John Pint, contributing writer

Drink: Casa Zea maíz vodka (Puebla)

Casa Zea vodka
If you’re looking for a new spirit to try, corn vodka should be on your list. (Casa Zea)

Vodka is the worst. Corn vodka though? Love it. It’s grainy, it’s sweet, it’s exclusive. And it can only be enjoyed in a seductive tasting house on the outskirts of Puebla’s historic center. By far the most unique spirit I’ve tried in a long time.

Recommended by Bethany Platanella, contributing writer

Dish: La Bestia pizza (Benu, San Miguel de Allende)

La Bestia pizza
Meat-lovers delight! (Benu Pizza)

Benu serves the best pizza in town. The chef, Pablo Gil, is always there making sure every pizza is cooked to perfection. He makes his own “masa madre” (sourdough starter) which gives every bite an excellent balance. La Bestia is a meat-lover pizza that you will never forget.

Recommended by Camila Sánchez Bolaño, editor

Drink: Cóctel de jamaica y mezcal (La Docena, Guadalajara)

Hibiscus cocktail
A refreshing and tangy mezcal and hibiscus flower cocktail. (Shuttestock)

The combination of sweet berry syrup, tangy hibiscus infusion, and a hint of chili creates a tart and tannic mezcal cocktail that’s truly ideal for any occasion!

Recommended by Gaby Solís, staff writer

Drink: Pulque (Central Mexican highlands)

Pulque is an acquired taste, but is growing in popularity. (Shutterstock)

It is true that it is very difficult to find good pulque because window from ready and delicious to undrinkable is very short (days at most). But good pulque is wonderful, and great pulque is best with no flavorings. Fortunately, there are some places like, Pulquería Los Insurgentes in Colonia Roma where you can have a good first experience.

Recommended by Leigh Thelmadetter, contributing writer

Drink: Ceiba Ámbar Mestiza (Cerveza Ceiba, Mérida)

Craft beer from the Yucatán. (Cerveza Ceiba)

Yucatecan craft beer at its finest. This 4.8 percent proof multi-award-winning brew is made in a Vienna style, using high-quality German malts and hops in its mixture. It’s an amber-colored beer, with woody aromas and smoky flavors, which makes it ideal to enjoy in the Mérida sunshine.

Recommended by Mark Viales, contributing writer

In case you’ve missed the series, go back and check out our MND staff picks 2023: Books and MND staff picks 2023: Films and series. Next week we will bring you favorite cultural experiences.


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