In Part 1 of our look back on our December 2015 trip to Mérida, the capital of Mexico's Yucatan state, I promised to show you the delicious food we ate while in the city. I'm making good on that promise in this post. Simply revisiting our photos makes my mouth water.
Mérida is well known as a haven for foodies, and there are many wonderful dining choices here, with over 600 restaurants listed on Tripadvisor. Yucatecan cuisine abounds, of course, but there are also a wide range of international restaurants of all flavors with many countries of the world represented. Being somewhat creatures of habit, we primarily ended up revisiting places we'd enjoyed on our first trip here a few years prior, though we did try a new lunch spot and found a fabulous new gelato place for treats. Since a tasty breakfast buffet of fruit, cereal, and pastries was served daily at our lovely little hotel, we didn't eat any breakfasts out.
The new lunch spot we found was one of the classic Mexican holes in the wall offering cheap eats, a different almuerzo (lunch) special daily, and was packed with locals; always a good sign. I couldn't even tell you the name of this place as we just stopped in as we walked by because it looked busy and inexpensive. We ordered turkey panuchos, our favorite Yucatecan treat, and they were delicious!
For dinner, we enjoyed returning to Hennessy's Irish Pub on the Paseo de Montejo, one of the spots we'd enjoyed on our first trip. In addition to traditional Irish fare and a lengthy beer menu (of course!), they offer lighter salads and appetizers that hit the spot after a heavier Yucatecan lunch. And by eating a lighter dinner, we saved room for gelato for dessert!
We ate dinner at Hennessy's twice. The first time, after our lunch of panuchos, we enjoyed loaded salads. These obviously aren't exceptionally low in calories, but at least they offered the veggies we were craving.
On our second visit, we shared a couple of items from the appetizer menu, and they were as delicious on the palate as they are to look at. The top one is beet salad with sprouts and spiced nuts, but I can't recall the bottom one; I think a fish cake of some sort, with salads on the side. (Note to self: It helps if you don't wait over a year to blog a restaurant!) I do recall that they were both specials that evening.
We celebrated Barry's birthday while we were in the city. For his birthday lunch, we returned to one of our favorite spots from our first visit, the well-known Restaurante La Chaya Maya. Of course we had to go for panuchos again, and Barry enjoyed one of the chaya-pineapple drinks they are famous for and some chaya soup. A perfect lunch for the birthday boy!
For his birthday dinner, he wanted casual, so we re-visited another spot from our first trip. El Chile Habanero serves Mexican and Latin food but also pizza! And we've never seen anyone but locals inside. Their specialty is the Pollo Afrodite (Aphrodite Chicken), heavy with fruit. And of course, margaritas! They have 2x1 drink specials if you arrive early, which suits us just fine, as we eat dinner a lot earlier than most folks in Mérida seem to.
I tried a small Vegetarian Pizza, and it was loaded!
Please stay tuned, as we have one more post on Mérida to share, followed by our jaunts into the interesting "Yellow City" of Izamal and charming coastal Celestún.
Emily & Barry
We're a long-married, early-retired couple who are currently traveling as nomads with no fixed home base. After years of living in North Carolina (Emily's home state), we spent 18 months living oceanfront on Ambergris Caye, Belize, a year road-tripping the US in a Honda CR-V, a year in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, and are now roaming North America in our 32' motorhome, Pearl, following warm weather whenever possible.
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