The Ultimate
                Mexico City
      Food Guide: A Farewell
        Commemoration

As some readers may know, I recently moved away from Mexico City after an exhilarating and eye-opening eight months there. This was a truly bittersweet transition in my life because Mexico City has so much to offer both vacationers and temporary residents. Gorgeous beaches, world-class cuisine, and some of the most friendly and welcoming people I’ve ever met are the main reasons why Mexico will always be one of my all-time favorite countries. So it’s fair to ask the obvious: with so many things going for it, why would I leave?

Long story short, I quit my desk job in Mexico City to take a year-long English teaching contract in Vietnam, which is where I’m already based! I was looking for a bit more adventure, and I’m currently back at the beginning of yet another process of learning a new language, a new culture, and a new city.

Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam

After I departed from Mexico City, I wanted to write a post commemorating the city in a fun way that would be useful to other travelers. After living there for almost a year, I think I introduced some of the city’s most famous attractions in my post announcing my move from the US to Mexico, so in this post I’m going to focus on something else: food!

Yum!

Mexico City has one of the world’s most vibrant culinary scenes, and this becomes apparent after spending just one or two days in this massive metropolis. There are delicious and satisfying flavors that can fit any traveler’s budget, and I can honestly say I think it would be hard to find food that isn’t delicious!

With that said, in this post I’ll introduce about 20 different options which range in price from a dollar or two to multiple hundreds of dollars (in case you REALLY want to treat yourself!). Don’t read this post on an empty stomach, or you might end up at the nearest Mexican restaurant attempting to satisfy a craving for tacos!

Here’s a small note. I lived in the neighborhood of La Condesa, worked in Polanco, and spent most of my time between those two areas or within the vicinity of La Reforma, Mexico City’s biggest and most important avenue. The restaurants I recommend are clustered in this part of the city, although I’m sure there are equally amazing options in other neighborhoods. If you have a favorite restaurant in a different area that I didn’t mention, let me know in the comments below!

Without further ado, here’s my list! It’s loosely organized by type of cuisine, so click any of the links below to skip to a certain section.

I. Mexican Classics
      1. El Fogoncito
      2. El Farolito
      3. La Casa de Toño
      4. Restaurante Fisher’s
      5. Los Arbolitos de Cajeme
      6. Cafebrería El Péndulo
      7. Street Food!
      8. Vips
II. For the Fanciest of Foodies
   
  9. Pujol
      10. Quintonil
III. Other Latin Options
      11. Venezuelan: Órale Arepa
      12. Peruvian: Asia Perú
      13. Cuban: Casa Habana
      14. Latin Food Court: Comedor de los Milagros
      15. Argentinian: Patagonia
IV. Miscellaneous
      16. Tapas: Guria Tapas y Cocina Ibérica
      17. Chinese: Yi Pin Ju
      18. Eat in a Cave: La Gruta Teotihuacán
      19. Try Mezcal
V. Cafes
      20. Blend Station
      21. Punta del Cielo
      22. Tierra Garat
      23. Cielito Querido

I. Mexican Classics

If you’re visiting Mexico for the first time, I bet you’re excited to try some authentic cuisine. And yes, it is pretty different from Mexican food that you’ll find in the States! Below are eight different options to try, and what’s great is that all of them are relatively cheap. A quick guide on pricing I’m using in this guide:

  • $ means a meal should cost only a few dollars per person
  • $$ means a meal should cost no more than 10 to 12 USD per person
  • $$$ means a meal should cost no more than 20 to 30 USD per person, depends largely on if you get drinks or not
  • $$$$ means a meal could be upwards of 100 USD per person (this only applies to two restaurants on the list, see more below)

1. El Fogoncito

Locations: Multiple (the one I’ve been to: Leibnitz 54, Anzures, 11590 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $$
Website: http://www.fogoncito.com/

First on the list is one of my favorite go-to places after a long day: El Fogoncito! This taco joint is affordable and casual with a large menu and friendly staff. I definitely recommend the parrillada Fogoncito, which is their taco sampler. As you can see in the picture below, it comes with 5 different tacos and a small quesadilla as well as a dollop of guacamole. They also have a bunch of salsas which are served with every dish. If you want to experience a bunch of different flavors all in one meal, this is the place to go!

2. El Farolito

Location: Multiple (ones I’ve been to: Altata 19, Hipódromo Condesa, 06100 Ciudad de México, CDMX or Av. Isaac Newton 130, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11570 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $ or $$
Website: http://www.taqueriaselfarolito.com.mx/

It’s got a similar name to El Fogoncito, so be sure not to get them confused! El Farolito is a just a tad more casual, and they specialize in tacos al pastor (pictured first below), a must-try dish in Mexico City! However, my favorite thing to get here are costras (pictured second below). A costra is basically a large amount of grilled cheese with your choice of meat inside that’s served with guacamole and a soft tortilla. If you love cheese, be sure to try a one of these! As soon as you’re seated at this restaurant, a tray will be brought out with three or four different salsas. They’re all delicious and add a bit of spice and flavor to anything you order!

3. La Casa de Toño

Location: Multiple (ones I’ve been to: Londres, 127 Loc. 30 Col., Juárez Ciudad de Mexico, Juárez 06600 Zona Rosa, Juárez, 06600 Ciudad de México, CDMX [located in Plaza La Rosa] or Londres, 127 Loc. 30 Col., Juárez Ciudad de Mexico, Juárez 06600 Zona Rosa, Juárez, 06600 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $ or $$
Website: http://m.lacasadetono.com.mx/

This is one of Mexico City’s most popular eateries for locals and tourists alike! It can get really crowded during peak hours, so consider going for an early dinner to avoid long waits. Note that the two locations listed above are extremely close to one another (like, less than one block away). If you arrive at one and the wait is really long, go check the other one!

Their menu has many different options, but they specialize in pozole, which is a spicy hominy soup. It’s good, but I prefer their other dishes, such as tacos or sopes (pronounced “so-pes”), which are open faced tortillas topped with bean paste, your choice of meat, lettuce, cheese, and sour cream.

As you can see in the picture above, they (like many of the other restaurants on this list) have a bunch of different salsas that they bring to every table no matter what you order. They are good, but be careful: these salsas are some of the spiciest I’ve had in Mexico!

4. Restaurante Fisher's

Location: Multiple (the one I’ve been to: Avenida Horacio 232, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11570 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $$ or $$$
Website: https://www.fishers.com.mx/#home

As the name suggests, this chain restaurant specializes in seafood. They have a truly massive menu, but I’ve always gotten one fish taco (taco de pescado Simon’s) and one spicy shrimp taco (taco de camarón a la diabla) whenever I eat here. They may not look very big, but they end up being surprisingly filling! Each of those go for about 4 USD, which is a bit expensive. They really are excellent tacos though, so I’d say it’s worth a try at least once.

Fisher’s also has a pretty extensive cocktail list, and I really liked the random dessert I ordered on a whim shown in the Instagram post below. This place can also get crowded especially on weekends, so maybe visit during a weekday if you want to minimize your chances of having to wait for a table.

5. Los Arbolitos de Cajeme

Location: Multiple (the one I’ve been to: Euler 17, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico)
Price: $$
Website: https://www.facebook.com/losarbolitos.decajeme.2/

This is another chain (with locations throughout Mexico) that specializes in seafood, but I’d say it’s a little bit more authentic than Fisher’s. The name, which means “The Trees of Cajeme,” references a coastal area in the state of Sonora, so they’re at least implying that their dishes hail from that region of Mexico. I can’t verify if that’s actually the case or not, but I like their food regardless. The serve a lot of soups and stews, shrimp dishes, and more. Pictured below is a plate of grilled octopus served with onion, tomato, and a huge green chili pepper stuffed with cheese.

6. Cafebrería El Péndulo

Location: Multiple (the one I’ve been to: Av Nuevo León 115, Condesa, 06140 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $$
Website: https://pendulo.com/

Even if you don’t eat here, El Péndulo is still a fun place to pop into because it’s a bookstore, restaurant, and cafe all in one! I had visited a number of times to browse books and to buy coffee on my way to work, but I finally got a chance to try a meal here in my final few weeks in Mexico City. The food ended up being really good, and I’ve often seen their dining area full for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, so it appears to be a really popular place throughout the day.

They also have a small stage where I believe they have live music on the weekends. Whether you want to have a meal, order a coffee, hear some music, or buy some books, El Péndulo felt like a place where the community came together to relax and socialize.

7. Street Food!

Location: Everywhere
Price: $
Website: N/A

Unlike in the US, street food is an integral part of life in Mexico City! It’s common to see dozens of office workers crowding around food carts or taco stands on the side of the ride during lunchtime. If you see one that catches your eye or that looks popular with locals, just go for it! No tour of Mexico is complete without at least a taste of food sold on the street.

I have no idea what these are called, but I really liked this stand pictured above that set up shop not far from where I lived and sold these black tortillas. In a stall like this, you tell the cook what meat you want as well as any additional toppings. They usually have a bunch of sauces to choose from, and in some cases they have additional toppings. It can also be fascinating to watch them cook your food right in front of you!

While places like this may or may not be adhering to health and safety standards, my personal philosophy after living abroad is to just throw caution to the wind and try the foods I want to eat. If this is your first trip to Mexico, it might be wise to bring some medicine for an upset stomach, but don’t let fear of getting sick prevent you from enjoying one of the city’s best culinary experiences!

8. Vips

Location: Nationwide chain (the one I’ve been to: Av. Pdte. Masaryk 29, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11571 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $ or $
Website: https://vips.com.mx/

Vips may not have gourmet meals, but it is what I would consider a “cultural experience.” I think the best way to describe Vips is as a Mexican Denny’s (but better). They have a large menu of reasonably-priced American classics (like burgers) as well as Mexican entrées. They also have some seasonal specials that rotate every month or so. After you order, they’ll bring free bread and chips, and many of the meals come in combos that include your choice of soup and a cup of coffee or other beverage.

Enchiladas (or something like that) from Vips

Don’t expect a stunning meal that’ll look great on your Instagram story. It’s also not going to be the most succulent lunch you’ve ever had. But after living in Mexico for many months, I can say with certainty that there are locals who absolutely love Vips and go there for lunch multiple times a week. It’s the kind of place where a line goes out the door during lunch hour, and waiters and waitresses recognize regular customers and vice versa. This isn’t going to be a place you need to go if you’re only in Mexico City for a few days, but if you’re here for longer than a week, I’d say go and get the experience just once.

II. For The Fanciest of Foodies

The following two restaurants consistently rank in the top fifty restaurants in the world, and in 2018, they held 11th and 13th place. Both cost roughly $200 per person for their multi-course tasting menus with wine pairings. You can also order the tasting menus without drinks, but I’d say it’s worth it to try the pairings; they have a lot of interesting and unusual wines from many different countries! 

For both restaurants, make reservations as early as possible. They could potentially be completely booked months in advance. If you’re curious what a meal at one of the world’s best restaurants looks like, read on!

9. Pujol

Location: Only one
Address: Tennyson 133, Polanco, Polanco IV Secc, 11550 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Price: $$$$
Website: https://pujol.com.mx/en/

I’ve been to Pujol once with my friend Ismael last fall, and it is one dining experience that I’ll probably remember for the rest of my life. As a top-ranked restaurant in the world, Pujol serves a multi-course dinner with flavors and dishes inspired from various parts of Mexico. Below are some of the many things we got to try during our dinner here, and some of my favorites were the baby corn dipped in a smoky sauce (third image and ninth image), the grilled octopus (fourth image), and the soft-shell crab (fifth image).

What made Pujol such a memorable dining experience though was their main course, pictured below. Do you know what it is? It almost doesn’t even look like food, right? And it certainly doesn’t look like a course of a meal.

This is a plate of mole (pronounced “moh-ley”), which is a sauce from Oaxaca. Normally, it’s poured over something else as a topping (for example chicken and rice). But here, because it’s some of the best mole produced in all of Mexico, they serve it alone so that diners can experience the flavor all by itself. In other words, you just use a spoon and eat the sauce directly! The two different colors indicate that one sauce has been aged longer than the other, and they do indeed have different flavors. If you want to eat it with something else, special leaf-based tortillas are served on the side, but be sure to at least just try a spoonful or two of each sauce individually!

If this all sounds a bit confusing, waiters and waitresses at Pujol are experts and do an amazing job of explaining each dish they bring you as well as how to eat it. They’re also all fluent in Spanish and English, and some may even know other languages! In addition to world-class food and delicious wine and cocktails, Pujol also has some truly phenomenal service.

10. Quintonil

Location: Only one
Address: Av. Isaac Newton 55, Polanco, Polanco IV Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Price: $$$$
Website: http://www.quintonil.com/en/

Quintonil is also a restaurant I’ve only been to once, except this time I went with my cousin Kailyn and her boyfriend Andrew in February of this year. Like Pujol, it was a really memorable dinner that was served by incredibly friendly and attentive waitstaff.

Although I really enjoyed each course and wine pours were really generous here, I think the meal at Pujol was just a tiny bit more cohesive. The flavors of each dish at Pujol seemed to have a bit more continuity as well as an overarching theme, which didn’t seem to be the case as much at Quintonil. With that said, Quintonil was still undoubtedly a really fun and exciting fine dining experience! Below are some of the things we were served.

The most memorable and unique course at Quintonil is shown below. Can you guess what it is?

These are escamoles, which are ant larvae (the white parts that look a little like grains of rice). This dish is a delicacy that comes from Central Mexico, and it really is better than it sounds. All three of us tried it, and I for one ended up really liking it! I do think it’s funny (and telling) that our waitress only identified escamoles as “the caviar of Mexico,” instead of “ant larvae,” but give it a try if you decide to come to Quintonil!

III. Other Latin Options

One of my favorite things about Mexico City’s food scene is the abundance of restaurants specializing in dishes from all over Latin America. If you’ve had a lot of Mexican food but aren’t to the point where you’re craving pizza and burgers, consider one of the following Venezuelan, Peruvian, Cuban, or Argentinian restaurants!

11. Venezuelan: Órale Arepa

Location: Only one (second location coming soon, I think) 
Address: Schiller 330, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Price: $$ or $$$
Website: http://oralearepa.com/

This restaurant may honestly be my favorite in all of Mexico City. You’ll be forgiven if you’ve never had Venezuelan food before, but don’t pass up this opportunity to experience it! It is so incredibly rich and full of flavor! It obviously shares some characteristics with cuisine from neighboring countries (e.g. the use of plantains, etc.) but it really can’t be compared to anything else.

Órale Arepa’s head chef is from Venezuela, and the restaurant is actually located right next to the Venezuelan embassy in Mexico City. I suspect that a large portion of their clientele is Venezuelans who are living in or visiting Mexico, but don’t quote me on that. One dish I really like here is patacones, pictured below. It’s formed like a sandwich, except the buns are made out of fried plantains! At least at Órale Arepa, it’s way too big to eat by hand, so you’ll need to use a fork and knife. Some of the ingredients inside include beans, cheese, meat, and cabbage.

However, my absolute favorite thing to get here is called pabellón criollo (pronounced “pa-beh-YON cri-O-yo”). As you can see in the picture below, it’s basically a dish served with rice, shredded beef, plantains, cheese, and beans. It may not sound like much, but this combination of simple ingredients together is unbelievably delicious and will get you hooked on Venezuelan cuisine for sure!

Each meal here is also served with a set of four different sauces, including a chipotle sauce, a garlic sauce that tastes a bit like mayo (but is way better), and two green salsas, one mild and one spicy. On top of all this, they have some really great cocktails! If you’re looking for something other than Mexican food, this is absolutely the place to go!

12. Peruvian: Asia Perú

Location: Only one
Address: 
Price: $ or $$
Website: http://asiaperu.com.mx/

I discovered this place with the help of a friend named Richard who had also been to Perú and was craving some cuisine. Both of us agreed that this was a good place to have some ceviche, Peruvian-style fried rice, or BBQ-style meat skewers. They also have a nice little covered patio area with lots of seating.

13. Cuban: Casa Habana

Location: Only one
Address: Lope de Vega 341, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Price: $$
Website: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Casa-Habana-Polanco/324305187656756

For whatever reason, Casa Habana was always pretty empty whenever I went, but that always surprised me because the dishes here are so flavorful! The owner is from Cuba but has lived in Mexico for a while, and they write their menu each day on a chalkboard. They’re really friendly and can help you decide what you want.

Most dishes here seem to come with a choice of meat with rice and a bean soup, which they’ll tell you should be poured over the rice and eaten together. Also, don’t forget to order a mojito before the meal!

14. Latin Food Court: Comedor de los Milagros

Location: Only one
Address: Medellín 221, Roma Sur, 06760 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Price: $$ or $$$
Website: https://www.facebook.com/comedordelosmilagros/

This is probably the most “fun” eatery on the list. It’s technically a sit-down restaurant, but it’s really casual and they have such festive decor. It’s also technically open air, but they have a retractable roof to let sunlight in when it’s nice or keep rain out if it’s not.

What makes Comedor de Los Milagros such a unique place is that their huge menu has dishes from all over Latin America. I would usually get bandeja paisa, which is a Colombian dish served with rice, beans, and a variety of different meats. I’d say the food here may not be the most authentic (since they aren’t specializing in dishes from a single country), but everything I’ve had has been tasty and filling. They also have an extensive drink menu with a lot of delicious rum-based cocktails.

15. Argentinian: Patagonia

Location: Only one
Address: Campeche 345, Condesa, 06140 Cuauhtémoc, CDMX
Price: $$$
Website: https://www.facebook.com/PatagoniaParrillaDeCampo/

This restaurant specializes in steaks and wine, but they also serve other Argentinian classics like empanadas. It’s a nice, cozy environment with a large covered patio where you can sit outside if you like.

I always found myself bringing visitors to Patagonia, partly because it was basically across the street from my apartment. Regardless, it’s a nice place to have a filling meal and a glass of wine. If you sit outside, be ready to be serenaded by street musicians (who will ask for a tip after they’re done)!

IV. Miscellaneous

16. Tapas: Guria Tapas y Cocina Ibérica (Inside El Palacio de Hierro Mall in Polanco)

Location: Multiple mall locations, however not sure if all of them have this particular restaurant. The restaurant is on the second food court level of the Polanco location of El Palacio de Hierro.
Address: Av Moliere 222, Polanco, Polanco II Secc, 11550 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Price: $$ or $$$
Website: https://www.elpalaciodehierro.com/restaurantes/laterraza or click here for menu (pages 16 to 20)

It may look casual when you first approach it because they only have counter seating, but Guria Tapas always has people from all over the world enjoying their delicious tapas. Since I haven’t been to Spain (yet!), I can’t confirm if they’re authentic or not, but I can say that they’re delicious! I especially like their bacalao (cod), which is served on a little slice of multigrain bread with pickled vegetables on top.

If you’re a fan of seafood, ask if they have any paella valenciana, which only costs about 7 USD per serving. It’s my favorite thing here, but in my experience, it doesn’t last all day: I’ve asked for the paella for dinner here and been told that they’ve run out, so I suspect they make a large batch each morning and serve it until it’s gone. If you really want to try it, you might want to visit Guria Tapas for lunch instead of dinner.

17. Chinese: Yi Pin Ju

Location: Only one
Address: Londres 114, Juárez, 06600 Juárez, CDMX
Price: $$
Website: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Yi-Pin-Ju/154601108395223

Why did a Chinese restaurant make the list, you ask? Well, mainly because the dinner I had at Yi Pin Ju was one of the most authentic Chinese meals I’ve had outside of China. It’ll give your favorite Chinatown restaurant a run for its money, and the ingredients and spices in the two massive dishes I had here tasted like they had been imported straight from Asia.

The Zona Rosa, which is where this restaurant is located, has a bunch of Japanese, Korean, and Chinese restaurants, but many of them just aren’t that great. If you happen to be craving really excellent Asian cuisine while in Mexico City, head on over to Yi Pin Ju!

18. La Gruta

Location: Only one
Address: Circuito Arqueologico, Avenida del Puente S/N, 55820 San Francisco Mazapa, Méx.
Price: $$ or $$$
Website: https://www.facebook.com/LaGrutaMexico/

La Gruta technically isn’t in Mexico City, but if you head over to the pyramids at Teotihuacán (which are right outside city limits), this is the most interesting place to eat lunch in that area. It’s also where the cover photo for this post was taken. The main reason I recommend La Gruta is that the dining room is situated in a cave! Although the food is a bit overpriced in my opinion, I’d say it’s still worth it for the experience. Wait times can get really crazy on weekends, so either arrive right when they open if you’re eating lunch there or just go on a weekday.

Another noteworthy thing about La Gruta is that they have a couple of insect appetizers on the menu! They’re not cheap, but if you’re a really adventurous eater like I am, I think you should go for it. The caterpillars I tried here were served with guacamole and tortillas, and were better than they probably look in the pictures below!

To read a bit more about La Gruta, check out my post explaining how to take a day trip to the pyramids at Teotihuacán!

19. Try Mezcal Anywhere

Location: N/A (You can get mezcal at almost any bar in Mexico City)
Price: $
Website: N/A

Everyone has heard of (and probably remembers a time they had too much) tequila, but if you haven’t had mezcal, especially in while in Mexico, give it a try! Like tequila, mezcal is also made from the agave plant, but it tastes a bit more spicy and smoky. When served as a shot, it’s often accompanied by slices of citrus fruit and chili pepper flakes. However, I think it’s best served in fruity mixed drinks like the ones pictured below. Whether you like it or not, I think most people would agree that mezcal has a very distinct flavor unlike any other distilled spirit.

V. Cafes

What’s an excursion without caffeination? Mexico’s coffee culture is huge, and there are a countless unique cafes as well as local chains. Below are some of the best places to get caffeinated!

20. Blend Station

Location: Only one
Address: Av. Tamaulipas 60, Hipódromo, 06100 Ciudad de México, CDMX
Price: $
Website: https://blendstation.com.mx/

This relatively large coffee shop with an undeniable hipster vibe is the only one on my list that isn’t a chain. They make good-quality drinks and also serve a number of pastries (and meals, I believe).

Blend Station is also a comfortable, well-lit place to sit and work, so if you need to catch up on emails or do a bit of studying while you’re in Mexico City, this is a great place to be productive and focused.

21. Punta Del Cielo

Location: Multiple (ones I’ve been to: Calle Arquímedes 69, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11580 Ciudad de México, CDMX and Calz. Gral. Mariano Escobedo 543-D, Rincón del Bosque, Bosque de Chapultepec I Secc, 11580 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $
Website: https://puntadelcielo.com.mx/en/

This coffee chain with locations throughout Mexico is one of the first ones I discovered on my very first trip to Mexico in the fall of 2017. Although everything on their menu is good, my favorite thing to get here is an iced mocha.

Punta del Cielo shops have a sleek and modern interior. They also sell bags of grounds or whole beans, so if you know any coffee lovers who would appreciate single-origin coffee, this is a good place to pick some up for gifts to bring back home.

22. Tierra Garat

Location: Multiple (ones I’ve been to: Av. Pdte. Masaryk 86, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11570 Ciudad de México, CDMX and Av. Nuevo León 122, Hipódromo, 06100 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $
Website: http://www.tierragarat.mx/

This coffee shop, which has a number of locations throughout Mexico City, has a slogan which means “Mexico is Coffee and Chocolate.” They specialize in both, and their menu is divided into three main sections: coffee, chocolate (i.e. hot chocolates), and coffee with chocolate (mochas, etc). Each section then has only a handful of choices, but I really liked every beverage I’ve tried here. Some of their specialties include variations on lattes that include ingredients like vanilla or spicy peppers. If you want a cafe with truly unique local flavors, this is the one to try!

In addition to great coffee, Tierra Garat stores also have a really cool interior design that makes you feel like you’ve ventured into an archaeological zone. Their baristas even wear these fancy leather aprons, so it’s a memorable experience even if you only get a latte or hot chocolate to go.

23. Cielito Querido

Location: Multiple (ones I’ve been to: Av. Pdte. Masaryk 25, Polanco, Polanco V Secc, 11560 Ciudad de México, CDMX and Fernando Montes de Oca 17, Hipódromo, 06140 Ciudad de México, CDMX)
Price: $
Website: http://cielitoquerido.com.mx/informacion/

Last on the last is Cielito (not to be confused with Punta del Cielo). It’s a pretty standard coffee chain, but they source locally from Mexico and also offer a number of unique snack options. I don’t have pictures, but this was my place of choice to get coffee during the workweek. On top of all that, they have really friendly staff who know regulars by name. To read more about Cielito, click here.

Which Restaurant Will You Try?

Writing this blog while sitting at a coffee shop in Vietnam made me feel really nostalgic for Mexico City, even though I only left a couple of weeks ago! I’m already dreaming about visiting again, although it’ll probably be a well over a year before I’m back in that part of the world! If you’re headed there and plan to try one of these restaurants (or you’ve been to one and love it or hate it), let me know in the comments below! I’ll live vicariously through readers who visit until I’m able to go back!

Thanks for reading and being a part of my commemoration of Mexico City! Stay tuned for upcoming excursions in Southeast Asia and beyond!

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This Post Has 26 Comments

  1. I loved all the options, the problem is that I read it with an empty stomach (Bad Idea) hahaha.
    I agree with many of your favorites, El Farolito, La Casa de Tono, Fisher’s, La Gruta.
    El Pendulo is a fantastic place, I could stay there for hours, my favorite is the one at Santa Fe because is the biggest.
    The only one I want to add is El Mercado de La Roma. Thanks for sharing all this delicious and excellent choices, Loved your Post Kevin.

    1. Thanks so much, Ferny!! It means a lot coming from someone who grew up there 🙂 I will be sure to check out El Mercado de La Roma and the Santa Fe location of El Pendulo the next time I visit CDMX!

      1. Thanks Kevin! You make me feel so proud of my country! Mexico misses you!

  2. La Gruta reminds me of Aluxes in Playa Del Carmen since they are both built into caves. I suppose La Roca in Nogales (Sonora) would be on that list too. I tell you what man, after reading this list I am craving some good tacos and mole. They just don’t make them right down here in Florida.

  3. I love Mexican food and I can only imagine how authentic it would be in Mexico City! Now I’m craving some good tacos!

  4. Wow, this post has made me so hungry! Mexican food is my favourite and Mexico City looks like it has so much to offer. I love mezcal! I had never heard of pabellón criollo, it looks so nice. That is exciting that you have moved to Vietnam, I’m sure you will love the food there too!

  5. Wow, what an amazing insight to food in Mexico City. I am not a huge fan of Mexican food (but I never been to the country but did try it in America and Britain), the usually stuff like tacos and borriotos but you have shown more variety here of different foods and would love to try them out. Dam, now I am hungry!

  6. Wow so comprehensive! Mexican street food is definitely what I would pick, looks delicious

  7. We spend 3 months in Mexico every year so I know how vibrant the food scene is. But you have shown me how much more in Mexico City! Lucky you. And then you are in Vietnam!

  8. All that food is making me hungry! I think Mexican cuisine has a degree of influence on Filipino food. I can see some similarities between our own Filipino food and these ones.

    1. I have read and heard that Filipino food and Mexican food are similar! Now that I’m based in Vietnam, I’m hoping to go over to the Philippines sometime soon and check it out for myself 🙂

  9. I too spent much time in La Condesa when I was in D.F., and I think it’s a brilliant place to eat. Being from the USA, I think we don’t appreciate Mexican food enough, thinking of it as just cheap fast food. Some Mex dishes are some of the complex sauces I’ve ever seen. Mexico City truly should be thought of as a foodie destination. I’ll be back, and thank you for such a comprehensive post — I truly admire bloggers who have the courage to make a long, involved post. The photos alone would make a brilliant entry, and just the blue tortilla street food makes me hungry. As for the health standards – just eat the food. Street vendors do not make a living by making people sick.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Tom! It did take me a lot longer to compile this list than to write up my other posts, but it was such a good feeling to finally hit the “publish” button after getting it all together! Hope you get to return to Mexico soon, and I absolutely agree with you about the street food; I don’t think anything can give me a stomachache anymore because I’ve spent the past few years just eating whatever looks interesting 🙂

  10. The culinary scene in Mexico City looks quite amazing and your pictures speak for itself! I’d love to explore it personally!

  11. I haven’t been to Mexico yet but I’m a big fan of Mexican food and this post made me hungry 🙂 I’m definitely planning to visit Mexico City soon and I’m bookmarking this post in the meantime! You did a great job of covering the highlights of Mexico City’s food scene. Thank you for sharing

  12. I must say that you’re such a foodie fanatic. Perhaps, this is one of the best list of food places I’ve read so far. I haven’t been to Mexico, and yet, and this is something I should bear in mind if I get the chance to visit Mexico City. The La Casa de Toño looks like something I would really love to try first.

  13. All this food looks incredible but I have to say, I’d be more enticed to walk the streets and try all that amazing street food than head to one of the restaurants. Great post!

  14. I didn’t read this on an empty stomach and it still made me hungry. I want to try it all, but I would totally start with the tacos at El Fogoncito and then the octopus at Los Arbolitos de Cajeme!

  15. Omg! You got me for this one. Mexican food is one of the cuisine we mostly cook in our house. Thank you for sharing when we have the chance to visit the city I’ll look it up again Kevin.

  16. Man, that was one LONG but DELICIOUS read and your food photos — I had to keep wiping the drool off my keyboard. Octopus … yum. Costras … yes please, two of those (I love cheese). And the pabellón criollo … OMG that looks good. Now I can’t wait to read your food takes on Vietnam. Bring it.

  17. Love Mexican food but I’ve never been in Mexico. Your post is mouthwatering! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  18. These are some mouth-watering pictures. But unfortunately most of them looks like non-vegetarian dishes and I am a vegetarian. Are these dishes prepared without meat or any other non-vegetarian stuff as well?

    1. Hi Nitin! You’re right that most of these dishes aren’t vegetarian 🙁 I’d say Mexico is a place where the diet is very meat-heavy. I’m sure some places would be able to accommodate, but overall the diet tends to be much more meat and actually not a lot of vegetables in my experience. It’s definitely not one of the vegetarian-friendly countries I’ve been to. Sorry I don’t have more info, but if you ever go to Mexico it might be good to just be aware of that.
      Cheers,
      Kevin

  19. This is indeed a tour de force on Mexican food. We have always had a special corner for Mexican food as it is close to our Indian cuisine in terms of spice. Though we are vegetarians, we always find something to our liking in Mexican restaurants wherever we go. Love the way that you have organized the different restaurants using the $ categorization. Makes it really easy for people to zero in on what they are looking for. This is an excellent post that we are bookmarking for reference.

  20. I absolutely love Mexican food. There’s so much variety and flavor in it. The photos look amazing by the way, they make my mouth water!

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