My Favorite Dishes From Restaurants In CDMX

Lalo Caesar Salad

When compiling this list I focused on dishes that are almost always on these restaurants' menus so you can try them for yourself any time of year. Since many of the best restaurants cook primarily with seasonal ingredients, I had to leave out many of my favorite dishes, but I still think you'll find something to enjoy here.

This list is a work in progress that I plan to update regularly. If I'm missing any dishes that I should try, please let me know in the comments section below.

Martinez – Breaded Fish and Meuniere Sauce

Martinez is the new restaurant by chef Lucho Martínez with chef Tristán Newman located on Puebla Street in Roma Norte. All the dishes are spectacular but I never tire of ordering the fish. Covered by a layer of crunchy breading where inside is the soft and fresh sea bass cooked in butter, it is simply finger-licking good. I recommend making a reservation as it is very popular and almost always full.

Other menu favorites include steak and frites and vol-au-vent.

Of the desserts, the chocolate cake is spectacular.

Bella Aurora – Desserts

The restaurant Bella Aurora is a restaurant in collaboration with Chef Elena Reygadas and Chef Federico Sali located on a very nice terrace that offers fresh and delicious Italian food. I could recommend everything on the menu, but this list lacks desserts so I bring you 2 options that are finger-licking good. The bomb that is served during breakfast and the leonesas during lunch have been my favorites, but honestly when it comes to desserts you have to try everything.

Lalo! – Caesar Salad
Caesar Salad Lalo
Caesar Salad – Lalo!

I'm not the biggest fan of salads. If I want to start my meal with something light, I will usually choose an aguachile or a kampachi. One of the few salads that I really love is Caesar salad in Lalo! (which is the sister restaurant of Máximo Bistrot). The mound of lettuce is super fresh and covered in a delicious homemade Parmesan dressing. It's a little difficult to make a salad sound sexy, so my advice is to go to Lalo! and try it for yourself. I'm also a big fan of your fish and chips and cheeseburger if you're still a little hungry afterwards.

MeroToro – Pork Jaw
Pork Jaw MeroToro
Pork Jaw – MeroToro

MeroToro is a cute little restaurant on Avenida Ámsterdam in Condesa that serves dishes inspired by Baja California. I love everything chef Jair Téllez cooks, but my particular favorite is his “Quijada de Cerdo,” which consists of a poached egg on a circular piece of delicious pork (usually mounted on a bed of broccoli and Brussels sprouts). I really love cutting into the egg and watching its contents soak into the meat below.

I am glad that “Pork Jawbone” is always on the menu because it is a dish that I always want to eat every time I visit. I recommend adding a couple of drops of their homemade habanera sauce which works great with most dishes on the menu.

Contramar – Tuna Toast
Tuna Tostadas Contramar
Tuna Toast – Contramar

If you're familiar with the CDMX restaurant scene, you'll know two things.

  1. Contramar It has the best restaurant atmosphere for afternoon meals in CDMX, 7 days a week.
  2. You have to start with the tuna toast. It is law.

Part of what makes Gabriela Cámara's tuna tostadas so iconic is obviously the quality of its ingredients and how amazing they taste together. However, I also think I love them because they symbolize for me the beginning of a fun afternoon in that room on Durango Street that has such a unique and electric energy. My advice is don't go to Contramar if you have plans for later that afternoon because you won't want to leave.

At the moment Lucho's Hot Chicken is not available in the restaurant, but it is available in their PopUps. If you want to know where and when find him on his social networks.

Em – Lucho's Hot Chicken
Lucho's Hot Chicken
Lucho's Hot Chicken – Em

I already wrote an entire article about Em because I love Lucho's cooking. In this article I mention that I have a particular love for fried chicken because my mother is from Belize and my favorite dish growing up was her Belizean-style fried chicken. As a result, I am a qualified critic when it comes to this dish and I am very difficult to please.

I'm happy to report that Lucho's Hot Chicken “almost” tastes as good as my mom's and comes with a delicious selection of sides, including kale salad, pickles, and mashed potatoes. The chicken is juicy and perfectly cooked, but it's the delicious crispy coating that makes you lick your fingers and clean your plate. Part of the reason for this could be the fact that Lucho spent part of his childhood and adolescence growing up in Nashville, a part of the world where they take their fried chicken very seriously.

Meroma – Agnolotti
Agnolotti – Meroma

Meroma It is my favorite sunny day restaurant in Roma Norte. While the restaurant has a nice indoor dining room, I love sitting on their beautiful upstairs terrace that has a view of the pretty street in CDMX, Colima. The food is also excellent and is produced by 2 very talented young chefs, Mercedes Bernal and Rodney Cusic, who graduated from the International Culinary Center in New York before opening Meroma in Mexico City.

I love their “foie gras terrine” and their “marinated quail,” but if I had to pick a favorite, it would probably be their agnolotti. Every time I visit I have to eat these delicious pasta pieces that are filled with cheese and roasted mushrooms and topped with a delicious buttery sauce.

Anonimo – White Pizza

Anónimo It has become one of our favorite restaurants. The food is always delicious, there is a good atmosphere and music, as well as having a very good location. A dish that you definitely have to try when you visit Anónimo is the “White Pizza”. It is creamy with bits of bacon, but it is not cloying and the bread is baked to perfection, ideal for you to enjoy alone or with company.

All the dishes at Anonimo are delicious and one of my favorites as an appetizer is the ceviche with leche de tigre.

Rosetta – Short Rib and Polenta
Braised Short Rib Rosetta
 Braised Short Rib with Rustic Polenta – Rosetta

Choosing a favorite dish from chef Elena Reygadas is not an easy challenge. Rosette has long been one of the most popular restaurants in CDMX and, as a result, everyone has their own favorites. If you told me that their tamales, ginger dumplings, or mushroom risotto were the best things on the menu, I wouldn't disagree with you. However, my personal favorite is Elena's braised short rib with rustic polenta. The blend of perfectly cooked short rib with creamy polenta makes this a deeply satisfying dish that I order again and again.

Zanaya – Vacio Tacos
Steak Tacos Zanaya Four Seasons
Vacuum Tacos – Zanaya (Four Seasons)

There's nothing better than eating Mexican food with a cold beer, but every once in a while I wake up and feel like eating tacos with a nice glass of cold rosé. On those occasions, I make a reservation for lunch at Zanaya, which is the main restaurant at the Four Season Mexico City. The restaurant overlooks the hotel's beautiful central garden, making it the perfect place for lunch on a sunny day in CDMX.

Although I also love aguachile and cheesecake At Zanaya, it's the steak tacos with pasilla chile, aged panela cheese, and azufrado beans that keep me coming back again and again.

Masala and Maiz – Fried Chicken
Fried Chicken Masala and Corn
Fried Chicken – Masala and Corn

Masala and Corn It's a relatively new discovery for me, so I'm not going to claim to be an expert on this restaurant or its menu. However, on the couple of times I've visited so far, I've been very impressed with everything I've eaten. What makes this restaurant so special is how they combine Mexican, Indian and East African cuisine to produce delicious food that is unique to the city. While I love their shrimp and vindaloo wings, my favorite dish is their fried chicken because it has a delicious crispy coating that tastes more Eastern than the usual Caribbean or Nashville style chicken I'm used to eating.

Makan – Noodles with Duck
Duck Confit with Noodles – Makan

Makan has become another recent favorite in recent months. I was so impressed with the quality and consistency of their food that I wrote this full restaurant review. Makan's menu is relatively short, but everything tastes great. If you are visiting Makan, I recommend you try their crispy noodles with duck confit. The duck is perfectly cooked and the homemade noodles absorb the delicious deep flavor of the duck jus.

Maximo Bistrot – Cheeseburger
Maximum Bistrot Cheeseburger
Cheeseburger – Máximo Bistrot

From March to October 2020 I lived in a small beach town in Nayarit called San Pancho due to the pandemic. While I was there, I noticed that my favorite restaurant in Mexico City, Maximum Bistrot, had added a cheeseburger to its menu for customers to pick up during lockdown. Every time Eduardo and Gabriela posted an Instagram story of the burger, I craved it so much and wondered if it could taste as good as it looked.

One of the first things we did when we returned to CDMX was reserve a table at Máximo to try their new cheeseburger (and delicious new chicken wings). It was worth the 6 month wait because the burger tasted sensational. Somehow Eduardo had gone from being a guy who didn't cook hamburgers to someone who had, in my opinion, the best hamburger in CDMX.

Some of you may read this and say “it's easy for him to have the best burger because it costs twice what I pay at my local burger bar.” That might be partly true, but in my experience, the quality of burgers often declines the more you pay for them because chefs at high-end restaurants feel the need to overcomplicate things. You often end up with a Frankenstein burger made up of 12 different ingredients that don't work together and is too big to fit in your mouth.

The genius of the Máximo burger is that it's basically only 3 ingredients. Incredibly soft and warm brioche style bread, wagyu beef and delicious cheese that complements rather than overpowers the other ingredients. Eduardo is a confident and skilled enough chef to know that less is often more and that is certainly the case with his cheeseburger.

Even though lockdown is over, I'm glad that both chicken wings and cheeseburgers are still regularly on the menu, but if they're not, I can also recommend their kampachi, steaks flat iron and almost everything else that Eduardo cooks.

Pujol – Mole Madre
Mole Madre Pujol
Mole Madre (Omakase Taco Tasting) – Pujol

I'm not a big fan of mole if I'm honest, so I'm glad the chef at Pujol, Enrique Olvera, please include your amazing mole madre in both your tasting and on the Omakase menu because it's something I probably wouldn't order myself. Anyone who has seen the Netflix episode Chef's Table with Enrique will know that this mole has been literally years in the making. Its beauty is in its simplicity, it is just 2 types of delicious mole served on a plate with a tortilla. I dare you to try this mole without licking your plate completely clean afterwards.

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