Revista Chilango

Los 10 mejores restaurantes que valen la cuenta

Septiembre 2014

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Condesa/Roma

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Restaurant areas


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Mero Toro
Amsterdam 204
Between Chilpancingo and Glorieta de Izlaccihuatl
Colonia Hipódromo-Condesa
Tel: 5564 7799
Adding to the Condesa's already very vibrant restaurant scene comes a new restaurant that blows much of the competition away. While many places are a lot like traps because the neighbourhood attracts such a lot of visitors, both local and foreign, Mero Toro is a sort of breath of fresh air. The location, while nothing to speak of, is simply designed and made to look warm with generous amounts of wood, which give the place a very homelike feel. The tables, again, nothing spectacular, but who cares; if you go you'll be eating sublime food off of them, right from the bread, which is made nearby at their own bakery to the starters, such as a gazpacho made with watermelon, and the main courses, like Mexican style Risotto. Indeed, it's hard to say what cuisine this place puts out, so rather than fumble with words, just go visit. It'll be totally worth it. 

Hotel Brick (La Olivia and Moderna)
Orizaba 95, corner of Tabasco
Colonia Roma Norte
Tel: 5525 1100
Hotel Brick actually houses two, very different restaurants; one which they call a lonchería, which is usually the sort of humble lunchtime eatery that many Mexicans eat at but done up and made to look rather sleek here. And it is pretty, particularly around dusk when pretty people start coming by to have a few drinks before heading out on a big night. This place, which is more casual, serves a variety of pizzas, pastas, salads, etc (not very lonchería like) but forget that; come for their breakfasts, which are made in the same oven they bake their pizzas in. For a more elegant dining experience with European fare, try La Moderna at the back of the hotel, which serves less fusion but more fussy French fare. Highly recommended are the beef bourguignon and the sea bass.

Casa Rosetta
Colima 166, almost on the corner of Orizaba
Colonia Roma Norte
Tel: 5533 7804
Arguably one of the most beautiful settings for a restaurant in an area as urban as la roma, the couple who run this restaurant have turned this 1930s mansion into a gorgeous setting that seems it could be right out of a period film, with each of the different dining rooms having their own character and decoration. The food is faintly Italian, with the usual risottos and raviolis and generous helpings of black truffle on many of the dishes. To start, try one of the Carpaccio and for dessert, try the tiramisu.

Contramar
Durango 200, almost on the corner of Glorieta Cibeles
Colonia Roma Norte
Tel:  5514 3169 / 5514 9217
Walking into Contramar feels a little bit like falling into a fishbowl. The walls are blue; you're surrounded on all sides with only a small door on one side to let you out. What this all conceals however, is perhaps one of the city's best locations for seafood. You'll also notice for sure, the impeccably decked out waiters, breezing past tables with brisk efficiency along with the very pretty clientele who frequent it and come to see and be seen. Getting past all of this though, and you'll be treated to some of the most impressive seafood, from the tostadas de atun, which are a Mexican classic but have a delicate oriental touch to them.  Follow that with some pescado al pastor de esmedregal; another Mexican classic that on street corners looks like a kebab and is typically made with pork. If you're not full at this point, also highly recommended is the pescado zarandeado; a classic from the Mexican state of Nayarit and is only fit if you're in a group of 3 or more people.

Stampa de Mar
Orizaba 28, corner of Puebla
Colonia Roma Norte
Tel: 5207 0741
A very frequently overlooked seafood place in fashionable colonia Roma, Stampa de Mar doesn't necessarily lack atmosphere but it does come across as quiet. Think romantic dinner or business lunch. Even friends, if they aren't the raucous kind. Whichever way though, the seafood is impeccably good, taking traditional Mexican dishes and cooking them with fish such as the robalo in pipian, where the fish is first cooked over coals before being enveloped in a banana leaf and steamed with pipian; a sauce whose origins go back to pre-Hispanic times and include such ingredients as pumpkin seeds, cumin  (which isn't so pre-Hispanic) and dried chillies.  Also highly recommended are the stuffed chillies, and the ceviche, which many say is the best they have ever had.

Cantina Covadonga
Puebla 121, between Orizaba and Cordoba
Colonia Roma Norte
Tel: 5533 2922
An iconic Mexico City cantina that has achieved massive popularity as of late because of location and atmosphere, which is a little bizarre because on one side you'll have a old men playing dominoes, men in suits in another whilst across from them a group of young things, sitting around chatting and drinking copious amounts of Tequila or Mescal. The Torta Milaneza, a Mexican style sandwich with avocado, tomato, Oaxaca cheese and breaded pork, is said to be legendary while the piña colada is also outstanding. Come on a Thursday or Friday night to really catch the atmosphere.

Tacos Gus
Amsterdam 171, corner of Glorieta Citlaltepetl
Colonia Hipodromo-Condesa
Tel: 044 55 1384 3077
Gus, the guy who runs this place, has in just a few short months, turned this into one of the most iconic taco destinations in Mexico City, offering a huge selection of very healthy and tasty tacos. So creative are his offerings, that his vegetarian options are often better than his carnivorous choices. He opens for breakfast at 9am and closes at 4pm but if you want the more popular stuff go before 2.30pm. Make sure you also have whatever his agua del dia is, which is a great way to wash down all that healthy goodness.

Mercado Medellín
Entrances on Calles Medellin, Coahuila, Campeche and Monterrey
Colonia Roma Norte
This covered market has been earning much acclaim as of late because the quality of produce has improved to reach the upwardly mobile tastes of residents in the surrounding Condesa and Roma neighbourhoods to such a degree that many consider it more expensive than shopping at supermarkets. If you plan on cooking yourself though, this is an excellent place to find local and in-season produce, or even just to have a bite to eat. There are a number of comedores, serving lunchtime fare of which the best is Los Canarios, serving up alambres made with vegetables and cooked with cheese and your choice of meat

La Broka
Zacatecas 126-B, between Jalapa and Plaza Luis Cabrera
Colonia Roma Norte
Tel: 4437 4285
La broka's concept is deceptively simple; come during the daytime and you'll get a set lunch with no options but lots of frills. Come in the evening, and you'll get wine with tapas but again, no menu. Everything prepared is at the caprice of the chef and whatever they have in the kitchen. Whether you come during the day or in the evening, the food is always impeccably prepared, very tasty, creative and, believe it or not, healthy. An excellent place to come with friends to absorb the very vibrant atmosphere, or on a date if you want to get lost in the crowd. Follow them on Twitter (@brokabistrot) to find out what they are serving each day for lunch.

Casa Merlos (OBSERVATORIO)
Victoriano Zepeda 80, corner of ex-Arzobispado
Colonia Observatorio
Tel: 5277 4360
Restaurants of this calibre are hard to find anywhere in the world but what makes this place so much more of a gem isn't only that it is so hard to find but because the cuisine, as they describe it, is baroque from the seventeenth century. Indeed, the dishes, whether faithfully prepared or not, are outstandingly put together making it an excellent place to come and sample more traditional Mexican dishes such as mole, pipian and even chapulines (grasshoppers). The décor is all done in Pueblan style ceramics. Be sure to make a booking; this place operates unusual opening hours and it can often be hard to get a table.

El Greco
Michoacán, corner with Nuevo Leon
Colonia Hipodromo-Condesa
Tel: 5553 5742
Tacos arabe do seem somewhat reminiscent of the kebabs available afterhours in any European city but be assured these are not. For a start, they close at 10pm. Moreover, the meat is fresher, the marinade; spicier, all alongside many more Mexican standards like queso fundidos (cheese cooked in a small earthenware bowl over an open fire). This place is run by a Polish immigrant who came in the sixties and has turned his little place into one of the most popular eateries in the Condesa. Don't come expecting anything short of a heavy, fatty albeit oh so tasty affair.

La Veracruzana
Medellin 198, corner with Chiapas
Colonia Roma Norte
Tel: 5574 0474
There is really nothing special about this place except that it serves simple and very affordable seafood. And while not everything on the menu is particularly outstanding, such as some of their more creative concoctions (see under especialidades), their standards are fantastic, such as the quesadillas de cazon (deep fried baby shark quesadillas) and the filetes, which are basically fish fillets prepared in any number of ways. The caldo de mariscos: a soup made with shrimp stock and accompanied by seafood, is also particularly good, especially after a long night out drinking! Indeed, while this place isn't necessarily a destination, if you're in the neighbourhood it is definitely worth a stop by.

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