PolancoOctober 30, 2016 in Mexico
After a delicious but late dinner, we were able to easily sleep in a little longer... An extra hour more than we had planned because we didn't realize CDMX's daylight savings had taken effect while we slept. We definitely didn't complain. We enjoyed some coffee before setting off to the upscale Polanco neighborhood for a food tour.
It started in a restaurant called Guzina Oaxaca where we learned about the common ingredients used in salsa and mole. The owner/chef, one of the top 20 in Mexico we were told, helped save the pepper that gives mole negro its black color which is often incorrectly thought to be from chocolate. There are around 45-50 ingredients in a typical mole (vs around 5 in a salsa) and no single ingredient should overpower the rest. Our tour guide, Luis, was very interested in hearing about our Pujol mole experience and was hoping to make it there soon.
Our next stop was a tamale shop. From the three vegetarian options, we chose the frijol y queso and nopal (cactus) y queso. They were equally delicious. We also tried a different type of atole (traditional warm corn drink) than we had the night prior at Pujol which was a chocolate version.
Luis took us through the lively Lincoln park which is lined with old Spanish-style mansions that have since been converted into beautiful restaurants. The park was named after a statue of Abraham Lincoln was gifted by president LBJ in the 60s. The park was swarming with people and festivities. In the park was a public viewing of the Formula 1 Grand Prix of Mexico that was taking place in the city that day.
At our next stop, we enjoyed mushroom quesadillas with hibiscus agua fresca. We learned that the difference between a taco and quesadilla is how they're served - tacos are rolled while quesadillas are folded in half.
The next two stops were for dessert. First we went to a packed ice cream shop to try "mamey" fruit ice cream. The fruit is the shape of an avocado but pink on the inside and brownish on the. The ice cream was just the right amount of sweet. We followed the ice cream up with a stop at a gourmet chocolate shop that is known for its chocolates designed to taste exactly like other treats such as Mexican cake, mango and chamoy, pistachios, guava and so many others. The chocolates were served with mezcal and, surprisingly, the combination was quite pleasant.
Agua and Sal, known for its fresh seafood, was the next destination. We enjoyed a refreshing ginger drink and an awesome Marlin tostada. The Marlin was cooked to have a similar texture and taste to pulled pork.
Finally, and thankfully because we were getting full, our last stop took us to a restaurant known for its tortilla soup. Our guide, forgetting that white meat is not included in our vegetarian eating habits, told us that it contained pork skin. Nonetheless, we tried the soup and it was pretty good, but Brittany was thankful she didn't have crispy pork skin floating around in hers.
The tour ended close to the highly rated anthropology museum so we decided to stop in. Not being big museum people, we were going to opt for a tour guide but learned they were unavailable on Sundays, so Nico was the impromptu guide. The Mexican history is really fascinating. The exhibits featuring Teotihuacan, Aztec and Mayan history were especially interesting. The Aztec sun stone was the most impressive display.
We waited out the rain in the museum. On our way back to the hotel, we took a stroll through Chapultepec park and were treated to a pretty sunset over the castle.Read more