There is not enough time to go into great detail during this increasingly busy season (tourism-wise) and so the Critic will put up some of the most recent adventures in the Merida restaurant scene.
San Bravo -Paseo de Montejo
San Bravo was/is the Critic’s hangout during this World Cup, being held in the übercorrupt venue of Quatar. Or Catar as you will see it written in español on the posters here in sunny Merida.
The food is fine, the beer is cold and the screen is massive, in their smoking-allowed special room with massive air filters and extractor units. The Critic tried the burger which was fine, the fries were good too. The Caesar salad was a bit too creamy and massive as well, and the arrachera was tender and cooked just right. What the Critic enjoyed most was the carpaccio de salmon. All the portions are large so don’t go overboard.
The place rocks for dinner from Monday to Friday and on weekends there is a large crowd of yuonger folks who are there to drink and party. There is a DJ and the music is loud, so don’t go if you are wanting to converse with a large group of people around a table – you will need sign language to accomplish this goal.
Hermana Republica – Merida / Progreso highway
It’s on the way home for those of us who live in one of the many gated communities in northern Merida or on the beach but Hermana Republica also has other locations, one of which is near the new Centro de Congresos along with another one downtown if the Critic has his facts straight.
This is a brew-pub place, featuring their now well-known Patito brand beer, brewed right there on the premises (the Progreso highway location that is) and the service can be spotty, but the beer is frosty and for the one game of the World Cup that the Critic enjoyed there, the food was fine. The photo is of a dish called Chicharron de Rib Eye, which is chunks of what one hopes is ribeye steak fried up and becoming increasingly popular anywhere in Merida where meat is served. This version came on a bed of guacamole and was quite tasty, if not cheap.
Kraken – Caucel
Kraken is one of the Critic’s perrennial favorites in Merida and it continues to be worthy of a mention. Located in a nondescript shopping center and with a locale that is entirely not at all as pretentious as so many “fancy” restaurants in Merida can be, Kraken is a true gem. Service is family style but keeps getting better; ie. don’t expect Balthazar service but what you get is commensurate with the place and the prices.
The menu is massive, and really anything you order will be amazing. The Critic likes to stick to the tostadas, loaded up with different fishy selections, and also either one of the hearty and massive chilapachole or seafood soups.
Hop: The Beer Experience – Paseo 60 Food Court
For those of you who like their beer, and are not afraid to try one of the many and varied local beers now being made right here in Merida, the Crici recommends visiting Hop, in the food court of the fancy Paseo 60 complex on 60 street.
There are a gazillion beers, some on tap and others in bottles. The Critic recommends (strongly) you try the Schwarzbier on tap (photo below) if they have it (selections change from week to week) and anything made by a Merida company called Thodes brewery.
Food is available as well and the ribs are truly delicious.