The Critic knows for a fact that many of the 19 readers of his ramblings have been – probably repeatedly – to eat at the market in Santiago, so he will just post a few photos of the delicious breakfast enjoyed recently in the company of the always charming Better Half and a group of amigos.
On a trip to Cancun and back yesterday, the Critic and his Better Half had enough time to stop for a ‘nice’ restaurant lunch as opposed to the usual (but always delicious and eminently satisfying) Doña Tere at the toll highway isla near Valladolid.
This time, the Critic veered off the highway and landed – after some meandering among the twisting yet bewitching back streets of Valladolid – at the Taberna de los Frailes restaurant, reviewed previously by the Critic. Yesterdays visit was as good, if not better, than the first one.
The menu is a real mix of things innovative and things Yucatecan and things both innovative and Yucatecan. Think Thing One and Thing Two. No, on second thought, don’t.
For example, the Critic ordered a Valladolid Temptation appetizer. What the hell is that you ask? It is two slices of grilled watermelon with a thick, gooey semi-melted (molten?) slab of panela cheese in between. Served with a little fruit sauce dip and grilled tomatos and a sprig of lettuce
bathed in balsamic vinegar, it was completely out of the ordinary and quite delicious not to mention unexpected. Is this Valladolid? A glimpse at the crumbling stone wall of the monastery across the tiny street confirms that yes, it is.
Then there were the nachos. Thankfully ordering only this one other appetizer the Critic, who is not shy about finishing his plate, could not finish these nachos. Arriving on a very hot plate the size of a small indoor swimming pool, the nachos featured tostadas that were thin and crispy, not the thick and crunchy ones usually found here. The cheese was apparently cheddar but the Critic can’t be sure but what was innovative about these nachos is that they were made with Longaniza de Valladolid, the citys famous smoked sausage, and served with a small dish of chopped pickled onions along with the usual jalapeno peppers. Again, please be aware that the size of this platter is on the huge size and the contents will feed a small village the size of Xcunya without much
Better Half ordered a lime soup and Dzotobichay aka Brazo de Reina which is a Yucatecan treat that must be tried at least once during any visit to this part of the world. The tomato salsa on top was fresh and very tasty. Again, the portion was quite large.
Just a brief note to let people know that the Local 3 restaurant on Prolongacion Montejo between Dante and the former SEAT dealership, is not closed, as was rumored on remixto.com.
They have modified their schedule for summer, as many Meridanos have moved to the beach and I suspect that some of their staff, gleaned from the Culinaria cooking school, are on vacation as well.
They are open from Monday to Thursday for lunch and early gringo dinner, until 6 PM. On Fridays and Saturdays, they are open for dinner (Mexican time) only and the restaurant is closed all day on Sundays.
On his most recent visit to the best panucheria in the world, La Susana Internacional, located of course in the charm-challenged and very “real” Kanasin, the Critic once again accompanied his usual order of one panucho, one salbut, a half-caldo and a taco or two of chicharra, with the agua de chaya, which is – as many know – a spinach-like leafy plant grown on bushes in most real Yucatecans back yards and that is loaded with anti-oxidants which almost (but not really) makes up for all the fat ingested in those other menu items.
Pretty too, the way they serve it.