Monday, March 4, 2024

World’s 50 best restaurants include 2 in Mexico City

Two Mexico City restaurants appear on the 2021 list of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants.

Pujol ranks ninth, three places higher than in 2019, while Quintonil took 27th place, down three spots compared to two years ago.

A list wasn’t published last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Located in the capital’s upscale Polanco neighborhood, Pujol captures “the spirit of Mexico” on a plate, according to the judges of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards, which are widely accepted as the Oscars of gastronomy.

Founded by chef Enrique Olvera in 2000, the restaurant offers “a varied seven-course tasting menu that packs an incredible punch,” the awards website said.

Jorge Vallejo
Quintonil chef Jorge Vallejo worked at both Pujol and the No. 1 restaurant on the 2021 list, Noma in Copenhagen.

“While the selection changes seasonally, the signature Mole Madre, Mole Nuevo – two concentric rings of the traditional Mexican preparation, one of which is aged for 2,500 days – is a stable feature, alongside a steamy dish of baby corn with chicatana ant mayonnaise,“ it said.

The website also notes that Pujol moved in 2017 and is now located in “a chic setting” with a “sleek interior … lit by gorgeous natural light that floods through the windows.”

Pujol said on Instagram that it was “happy to be part of The World’s 50 Best, along with an incredible group of restaurants.”

“We thank our community: producers, suppliers, our kitchen and dining room team, our customers and our friends,” it added.

Another restaurant founded by Olvera, Cosme in New York City, ranks 22nd on the 2021 list.

Five spots below Cosme is Quintonil, also located in Polanco. The restaurant offers “a taste of pure Mexico from a talented young chef,” according to the World’s 50 Best Restaurants website.

Quintonil restaurant
The World’s 50 Best Restaurants website praised Quintonil for offering “a taste of pure Mexico.” Quintonil

That chef is Jorge Vallejo, who previously worked at Pujol as well as René Redzepi’s Noma in Copenhagen, which took first place on this year’s list.

Quintonil, the awards website notes, “is the name of a green Mexican herb which features in some of the dishes and cocktails and pretty much sums up this restaurant: fresh, authentic and brimming with flavor.”

“… Although there’s an à la carte option, those with time should pick the tasting menu for the true Quintonil experience. From braised oxtail in black recado with almond purée and red onion to Atocpan-style mole with organic vegetables and sourdough bread, there’s a taste of many of the things that make Mexican cuisine so unique,” it said.

The website also notes that much of the restaurant’s produce comes from a nearby garden. “… Vallejo and his team keep their carbon footprint so low that many of their ingredients travel just 30 meters from origin to plate,” it said.

The restaurant also acknowledged its inclusion on the list and thanked its customers, suppliers, friends and “the Quintonil family.”

“Amid such difficult times due to the pandemic, it’s because of you that we are on this renowned list again,” it said on Instagram.

Two other Mexican restaurants appear on an extended list of the world’s 100 best restaurants. Mexico City’s Sud 777 ranks 56th while Guadalajara’s Alcalde took 68th spot.

Geranium, also located in the Danish capital, was judged the world’s second-best restaurant after Noma. Asador Extebarri in the Basque country of Spain, Central in Lima and Disfrutar in Barcelona round out the top five.

With reports from Reforma 

Hot, dry weather in the forecast across Mexico

Temperatures will range between 30 and 40 degrees Celsius (86 to 104 F) this week in parts of Mexico as the spring season approaches.

Authorities say Oaxaca wildfire is now 95% under control

Over 400 firefighters are working to contain a wildfire on the outskirts of Oaxaca City that has affected 704 hectares of forest.
A gray whale surfaces near a boat in the waters off Mulegé, Baja California Sur

The week in photos from Mexico: Huachinango to Tulum

Take a visual tour of the country with this selection of photos highlighting the events of the week in Mexico, from the everyday to the exceptional.