Am slinging out these final food shots from our fall visit to Mexico City like a short-order cook in a bad diner, but I am off taking new photos of meals in an entirely different spot on the map.
Most of these are from the Roma Norte neighborhood where we stayed. Am keeping my comments at a minimum, so the pictures will have to serve in helping you decide about restaurants when journeying there yourself.
Particularly enjoyed the abundance of vegetable dishes, including a no-pasta spaghetti, at Bowie Cocina de Humo, but the restaurant does take its name seriously. Every course is tinged with smoke-infused flavor. By the end of the meal, my mouth almost felt as though I’d been smoking. We found the much-heralded Nudo Negro with its show-off parade up to the kitchen to receive your amuse-bouche from the hands of a chef a tad bit pretentious, but the long-roasted eggplant, split open and topped with humus tableside, melts in your mouth.
There must be thousands of less expensive places to eat a Mexican-style breakfast in Mexico City, but the park-facing patio of Café Toscano on Orizaba is so pleasant the higher price tag was absorbed without question. Both the red and green chilaquiles are wonderful, and the fresh juice combinations round out the meals.
We loved the neighborhood comfort feeling of having pizza on the patio at Cancino Roma or shrimp arancini and a bowl of robust roasted tomato soup at Macelleria, where, as you can see from the featured photo, the restaurant correctly profiled us with the name of the house wine. Few tables at the popular Huset fail to order avocado pizza.
The variety and freshness of ingredients and recipes never disappointed us at Delirio. Fresh salads and sandwiches, moussaka and falafel and fresh meringues are among the celebrated bakery’s fare.
Nudo Negro splitting roasted eggplant tableside
Bowie Cocina de Humo chicken
Paprika lilo cocktail with tequila, ginger and spearmint
Casino Espanol seafood soup
Paprika chicken with spicy sauce
Galanga Thai Kitchen seafood tom
Galanga Thai Kitchen platano and helado
Bowie Cocina de Humo grilled vegetables
Paprika roasted eggplant
Volver blue cheese burger
NonSolo roasted vegetables
Delirio falafel sandwich
Galanga Thai Kitchen amarillo curry with mariscos
Huset mezcal cocktail
Huset pollo arroz
Paprika curried squid
Casino Espanol croquetas
Cancino Roma grain salad with cauliflower
Casino Espanol boquerones
Nudo Negro parading to kitchen for amuse bouche
Cafe Toscano chilaquiles rojos
Huset grilled romaine salad
Paprika rice with garbanzos
Buenavida Fonda roasted vegetable cemita
Cancino Roma pear and gorgonzola pizza
Cancino Roma fig and bacon pizza
Huset avocado pizza
Bowie Cocina de Humo no pasta spaghetti
Nudo Negro roasted eggplant
Broka Bistrot concinita pibil
Huset grilled tuna
Broka Bistrot shrimp lunch special
Macelleria arancini de camaron
Galanga Thai Kitchen green papaya salad
Cafe Toscano chilaquiles verdes
Delirio curried rice with garbanzos
Macelleria grilled squid
Huset roasted vegetables
Delirio mint and watercress salad
Macelleria roasted tomato soup
Casino Espanol beef filet with shrimp
Veering even farther away from stereotypical Mexican food, the curries and toms at Galanga Thai Kitchen are worth seeking. The green papaya salad in particular drew us out for a return visit. With its flavorful chicken, roasted eggplant and falafel moistened with spinach, Paprika enticed us back for multiple meals as well.
From there, jump into downtown for the old-school formality of service in the high-ceilinged Casino Espanol, worthy of entering for viewing the stained-glass in its Porfirio-era home alone. The croquetas, boquerrones and seafood soup transported us to Spain.
We almost avoided Casino Espanol after reading a review describing it as the type of restaurant attracting old suits entertaining young mistresses, but there were only a pair or two seeming to fit in that category. The poor Mister and Vic, unsuited and in the company of old wives.
Whether squiring old spouses or young paramours, diving into a throwback to the past is a recommended ingredient balancing out all the trendy contemporary kitchens so abundant in this bustling culinary capital.