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Inside Páramo
Alejandra Arango

The 38 Essential Mexico City Restaurants

Where to find short rib tamales, crispy pork belly laksa, fried fish buns with achaar mayo, and mushroom-infused Negronis in CDMX

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Inside Páramo
| Alejandra Arango

The first thing any visitor to the Mexican capital will take in — probably while staring out the window in awe as their airplane descends over the intense, urbanity-on-steroids sprawl — is the sheer size of this town, 573 square miles in total. It’s densely populated and patchworked with distinct neighborhoods, each with its own culinary identity. It would take several lifetimes to get to know all of the street stands, holes in the wall, neighborhood favorites, and high-end destinations in this city.

Yet this list — 38 restaurants, dishes, and culinary experiences that define Mexico City’s gastronomic identity — should offer a comprehensive starting point for any visitor. It includes the obvious and the overexposed; it also includes hidden gems. It covers longtime buzzing neighborhoods like Roma and Condesa, as well as newer destination districts like San Miguel Chapultepec and Juarez. There are tacos, tortas, tasting menus, and tamales. There are enough sweets to satisfy the most dedicated concha enthusiast and some old-school breakfasts for the nostalgists. Whatever the type of place, it provides standout food and a taste of something visitors can’t get back home.

Updated, December 2022:

All over the city, menus are becoming hyper-focused on specific themes, like a single region of Mexico or a family of ingredients. Most of the innovation is coming from young Mexican chefs, who are committed to culinary research and enjoy geeking out over fermentations, mushrooms, and traditional beverages. Beyond the A-list restaurants included in every international ranking, these days it’s worth a walk around the Santa María la Ribera and Escandón neighborhoods, where there is a world of small projects boasting charming ambiance and homey cooking styles.

We update this list quarterly to make sure it reflects the ever-changing Mexico City dining scene.

Natalia de la Rosa is a Mexican food writer, mezcal collector, and culinary guide based in Mexico City.

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Over the years, the celebrated tasting and omakase menus at Pujol have evolved into fine dining multicourse experiences focusing mostly on vegetarian or pescatarian items. That’s still true under the direction of chef de cuisine Jesus Duron, who honed his perfect execution during his formative years while cooking in France’s top restaurants before accepting the baton from Enrique Olvera at Pujol. In Duron’s hands, each dish on the seasonal menus speaks to the restaurant’s values: sustainability, respect for traditional Mexican cooking and local ingredients, and innovation. Book at least two months in advance.

A chef plates scorch marked green beans over puree on a tortilla.
Plating at Pujol.
Pujol

Los Tres Reyes

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It is said that the Gonzalez family — which runs three separate barbacoa spots in town — goes through more than 100 pasture-raised lambs each weekend, wrapping them in agave leaves and roasting them in an underground pit. The resulting barbacoa consomé is a mind-bendingly heady concoction, fortified with all of the slow-cooked lamb drippings. Los Tres Reyes is only open on weekends, but around 10 a.m. each Saturday and Sunday the Norteño band arrives and the beer begins to flow. Meat is sold by the pound, with sides like tortillas and avocado sold separately.

Outside of Los Tres Reyes
Photo: Los Tres Reyes / Facebook

Quintonil

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Through the end of 2022, Jorge Vallejo’s fine dining restaurant in Polanco, Quintonil, is celebrating its 10-year anniversary with a monthly dinner series in partnership with fellow 50 Best Restaurants chefs from all over the world. Rodolfo Guzman, Junghyun Park, and Mitsuharu Tsumura have already graced the kitchen. (Follow the restaurant’s social media for details.) If you come on any other night, you can still enjoy Quintonil’s fixed eight-course menu or a la carte options representing the best of Mexican cuisine. Opt for a seat at the bar for the best view of the action during dinner service.

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La Ventana del Ticuchi

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Enrique Olvera’s small outdoor eatery, La Ventana del Ticuch, is one of the best places to have breakfast or lunch in Polanco. The menu, produced by a beautiful kitchen centered around the comal, includes Oaxacan corn-centric specialties like tetelas, tamales, and tlayudas prepared with Olvera’s characteristic attention to detail. The menu can change according to the season and product availability (remember to ask about daily specials), but look out for the crowd favorite: the esquite tamale prepared with corn kernels, mayo, and cheese. Take time to explore the drink menu, which taps into traditional Mexican fermented beverages like tepache, and corn or fruit-based agua fresca infusions.

A top-down close-up on two fried eggs in dark sauce with cooked hoja santa leaves and chili salsa on top.
Huevos al comal with hoja santa.
La Ventana del Ticuchi

Siembra Tortillería

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Located in the fancy Polanco district, Siembra Tortilleria works with native Mexican corn to produce the most delicious and colorful tortillas. Besides devoting most of their kitchen labor to tortillas, tlacoyos, sopes, and totopos, they also offer a small corn-centric menu, where a variety of tacos and tamales appear weekly alongside fresh salsas from the molcajete. Asada, carnitas, barbacoa, and shrimp tacos are among the favorites, as are the cochinita tamales. Stop by for a meal on the go, but don’t expect to linger at the casual window setup too long.

Mari Gold

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Chefs Norma Listman and Saqib Keval created this casual mix of Mexican and Indian cuisines. Located in the San Miguel Chapultepec district, Mari Gold offers breakfast and lunch menus in constant evolution, with vegetarian stews like chickpea chole served with a fried egg and tortillas, or a fried fish bun with achaar mayo. A short but stellar wine list and super-friendly service round out the experience.

Ciena flourished in the middle of the pandemic with its well-edited menu and sleek yet cozy vibes. Located in Condesa, the place is perfect for a weekend brunch with bloody marys or casual dinner with vermouth on the rocks. Chef Ana Paula “Pavi” Ancheta created a menu with Mediterranean accents, focusing on ingredients sourced from local farms with sustainable practices. Stop by for the aperitif hour, where you’ll find small bites like fried polenta along with heartier bites like roast beef sandwiches, before diving into Condesa’s nightlife scene.

A crisp restaurant exterior with rounded white walls and light wood awning, over several simple outdoor tables set with flowers.
Outside Ciena.
Ciena

Restaurante Nicos

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A long-time player in Mexico City’s fine dining scene, Nicos continues setting the bar for traditional Mexican restaurants with its impeccable service and commitment to sourcing local and sustainable ingredients. Located in the Azcapotzalco neighborhood, Nicos is well worth the Uber ride to enjoy seasonal dishes like chile en nogada or cacahuazintle pozole prepared with fall corn. The ambiance is formal but not stuffy, and the guacamole and salsas prepared tableside continue to lure diners from all over town. 

Nicos Tequila Cart
Photo by Helen Rosner

Located in a quiet corner in Condesa, Saint has become a neighborhood darling for excellent pastries and sourdough bread. The place offers a short but sweet menu with small bites like a salami and peperonata sandwich and a bacon brioche that can be paired with a reliable cup of coffee during the day or a glass of wine as the afternoon sets in. The croissant, pain au chocolat, and Spanish-style cheesecake are all musts.

Anonimo

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Anonimo sits at a busy intersection in Condesa, but inside the restaurant instantly sets diners at ease with its casual warmth and attentive service. The menu has a distinctive Italian influence. Don’t skip the risotto with octopus and aioli, or the quelite ravioli with queso Chiapas. The restaurant offers a wide selection of raw wines, with several options to explore the local juices of the grape.

From above, a plate of grated cheese-covered pasta in a decorative dish, set among other pastas, dips, and dishes.
Pasta, among other items, at Anonimo.
Mikcas

This small bistro fills an obvious need in CDMX. It’s that rare cozy restaurant that’s equally great for a solo meal or a glass of wine with a few friends. Chef Michael Crespo has created a French-inspired menu that hits the mark every time, alongside an excellent wine list with natural and low-intervention options mostly from the Old World. The beef tartare with tonnato and gnocchi Parisienne with chicken jus have become signature dishes.

Oysters on ice with horseradish and lemon, beside other dishes and a plate of toast, on a sun-lit table.
Oysters at Hugo.
Hugo

Botánico

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Located in a restored art deco mansion in Condesa, Botánico is the first solo project of chef Alejandra Navarro, an alum of acclaimed Mexican fine dining restaurant Quintonil. The lush courtyard is an elegant setting for a long afternoon of cocktails, wine, and shareable plates. The menu has an international touch, so expect dishes that combine flavors from all over the world with high-quality ingredients. When in doubt, go for the oyster platters, fried squid, and pork Milanese with a salad of field mustard and buttermilk dressing.

A restaurant patio enshrouded in foliage with blond wood tables, chairs, and canopy.
Botánico’s idyllic courtyard.
Botánico

Café Ocampo

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Café Ocampo is a cafe in the morning and an aperitif/cocktail bar by night. The small Italian-inspired bar sits in a quiet plaza in the Cuauhtemoc neighborhood. It’s gained popularity for its wide selection of vermouth and Italian amari, but it’s most famous for its well-balanced carajillos and espresso martinis, concoctions ideal to kick-start a night out in Mexico City. The food menu focuses on tapas and small bites to go along with the libations.

Head to Caiman in la Condesa to try some of the most avant-garde creations from Mexican wine country. The food menu is designed to complement the cocktail and wine experience, with munchy snacks like french fries with mussels and quail egg, or canned items for no-fuss clientele. The classic cocktails are well-executed, but explore the house pet-nat selection, which comes mostly from Baja California. The vibe is chill but the bar still delivers that Condesa it factor.

Bella Aurora

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A lush, charming terrace houses Elena Reygadas’s latest culinary project: Bella Aurora. The restaurant continues the chef’s interest in Italian cooking, and it has quickly become a local favorite for brunch and casual dinner. Try the paccheri with fresh tomatoes and capers, the gnocchetti sardi with lemon preserves, and the selection of pizzas with in-house charcuterie. Do not skip on Bella Aurora’s classic martini or mango bellini during cocktail hour. The ambiance of the restaurant is Reygadas’s winning card, perfectly complementing the homey yet refined cooking.

A covered outdoor seating space covered in greenery with hanging lanterns.
Bella Aurora’s cozy ambiance.
Bella Aurora

Contramar

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Contramar, the buzzy, vibrant, and enduringly popular seafood restaurant from chef and restaurateur Gabriela Cámara, is the ideal spot for a long lunch, either in the sweeping dining room or out on the sidewalk. The tuna tostadas are just as good as everyone says, and we beg that you save room for a slice of the fig tart for dessert.

Tuna Tostadas
Tuna Tostadas
Photo by Helen Rosner

Migrante

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Chef Fernando Martínez Zavala creates a menu inspired by the intersection of flavors and culinary traditions from Mexico, Europe, and Asia. The open kitchen is the highlight of the casual space, and it turns out beautifully plated dishes that highlight combinations of textures, culinary techniques, and locally sourced ingredients. For a taste of Migrante’s culinary range, try the six- to nine-course tasting experience with the optional pairing. If ordering a la carte, try the scallops with a green apple emulsion and tomato gelée or the braised duck with carrots and sumac jus.

A deep bowl with several slices of fish beneath edible flowers and a puff ball of cream.
A fish dish from the Migrante tasting menu.
Antonio Cruz

Handshake Speakeasy

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With sleek 1920s decorations in a hidden, speakeasy-inspired space, Handshake offers a cocktail menu by award-winning Dutch bartender Eric Van Beek. Since relocating to Colonia Juarez in 2021, the bar has taken off as a drinking destination, with guests eager to try the famous clarified piña colada or the bar’s take on more modern classics like the pornstar martini, with vodka, pineapple, passion fruit, and vanilla. Seating is limited, reservations are a must, and guests have a window of 90 minutes to enjoy the experience.

A verity of cocktails in various shades, glassware, and garnishes.
Drinks at Handshake.
Handshake Speakeasy

Imbiss has become a favorite for locals, and it’s not unlikely for diners to run into friends as they enjoy late-night dinners, natural wine, and cocktails. Chef Filipe Neves and his partner, Ramsés Luevano, have created a super no-fuss concept with a constantly changing menu based on ingredient availability. Imbiss’s most sought-after dishes are the fried chicken and the bone marrow, which often becomes a bone luge for a shot of rye, the sort of decadent indulgence the restaurant excels at on weekends. The wine selection is solid, mostly focused on low-intervention options, so embrace the funk.

Two large pieces of fried chicken presented on a pancake with sauce.
Fried chicken.
Imbiss

Mi Compa Chava

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Mi Compa Chava continues to woo seafood-loving Chilangos. During the summer of 2022, the project, lead by chef Chava Orozco, opened a second location in Coyoacán on the south side of the city. The menu at both locations remains the same, featuring amazing products sourced from Sinaloa and Baja California in an array of Mexican seafood staples like aguachiles, zarandeado shrimp and fish, seafood cocktails, and a selection of tostadas inspired by eateries in Colima, Sinaloa, and Baja California. Both locations are highly popular, so plan in advance or expect long lines for a table.

A compact tower of seafood on a plate being drizzled with dark sauce.
Seafood tower.
Juan de Dios Garza Vela

Expendio de Maiz

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This nixtamal-centric culinary project is devoted to sourcing endemic ingredients from states like Guerrero and Oaxaca while building a strong community with producers. The restaurant receives guests on its own terms: There’s no menu, and techniques and dishes rotate daily according to ingredient availability. Expendio de Maiz seats at most 10 people and there are no reservations, so showing up early is the only secret for making it to a table.

From above, a small dish with corn shaped into a calavera skull, avocado, and cheese, on a wooden table with some bright flowers beside
Calavera made from corn
Rudolph Castro

Esquina Comun

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Esquina Comun began life in a tiny second-floor apartment in the Roma neighborhood, but the weekend-only lunch experience had to move in late summer 2022 due to the increasing demand for reservations. Now perched on a Condesa rooftop (the exact location is revealed only after your reservation, made via social media, is confirmed), the restaurant serves a fixed six-course menu from chef Ana González Serrano. While the new location feels a bit more generic and less charming, Serrano’s cooking still shines brightly. Dishes might change weekly or monthly, but they always reflect the chef’s unpretentious style of cooking, with each course playing on the intersection of flavors from Mexico, India, and South America.

686 Bar

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Located above EM (also on this list), 686 impeccably edits classic cocktails for a 2022 drinking audience. Enjoy pre- or post-dinner libations like the Aviator, a take on an Aviation made with Armonico gin, St. Germain, and citrus, or the much sought-after Negroni Sbagliato (which was on the menu here before the cocktail’s viral moment). If the drinks make you a bit hungry, indulge in fried chicken or roasted baby corn.

Lucho Martinez is among a young generation of Mexican chefs redefining fine dining in CDMX. His tasting menu at Em relies heavily on quality sourcing and playfully engages with different traditions: Mexican, Japanese, French, Italian, and everything in between. Dishes can change according to availability, but the grilled fish with miso and chilhuacle and the tuna tostada with fried leek and chile ash are among the best dishes in the city. The experience is a journey of texture and flavor, neatly framed in the restaurant’s casual, minimalist dining room.

From above, a whole roasted fish topped with colorful herbs and other garnishes, on a long plate beside a bowl of tortillas and sauce.
Whole bass at Em.
Em

Café de Nadie

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A cafe by day and bar by night, Café de Nadie has become a favorite in the Roma Norte district since opening in 2020. Visit during happy hour to sip one (or two or three) of the bar’s cocktails while contemplating the wonders of the high-definition sound system, which plays hits from a well-curated vinyl collection. The bar’s signature cocktails use Mexican spirits like sotol, charanda, bacanora, and mezcal, but the martini and Americano are perfectly balanced as well.

A brown drink in a nick and nora glass garnished with an olive, beside a small bowl of snacks.
A cocktail at Café de Nadie.
Café de Nadie

Mux Restaurante

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Chef Diana López del Río devoted several years to culinary research focused on the food traditions of small towns in different regions of Mexico. The menu at her Colonia Roma restaurant, Mux, is a collection of recipes she learned while cooking side by side with cocineras in the field. Along with especially friendly and eager hospitality, expect dishes prepared traditionally with masa, lots of moles, fermented drinks, and escabeches.

A specialty coffee bar and traditional bakery in the Roma Norte neighborhood, Forte is ideal for connoisseurs and coffee geeks. You can also visit later in the day to sample popular sandwiches and a weekly pizza night while you drink through an excellent selection of Mexican craft beers, natural wine, and cider (the latter two by the bottle or glass).

A close-up on a laminated dough pastry, torn open by a baker to reveal a fruity filling inside
Stuffed pastry at Forte
Forte [Facebook]

Tencüi

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Fungi takes center stage at Tencüi. Located in the Santa María la Ribera neighborhood, this tiny restaurant by Mexican chef Mario Espinosa uses seven varieties of mushrooms — cultivated locally in Puebla, Estado de México, and Tlaxcala — to create a mostly vegetarian menu. Dishes might include braised vegetables with shiitake and enokitake, a mushroom escabeche with pate, or roasted huitlacoche cob with epazote and molcajete salsa. The drink menu doesn’t skimp on the restaurant’s theme, with options like a Negroni infused with mushroom extract.

A layered cake slice topped with figs, beside a scoop of ice cream.
Dessert at Tencüi.
Tencüi

Chefs Aldo Saavedra and Manuel Rivera run Tetela, a casual breakfast and lunch spot located at the heart of Roma Norte. The menu includes best-of-the-best dishes from the traditional breakfast repertoire of regions like Oaxaca, Michoacan, and Jalisco. The chilaquiles in chirmole (Jaliscan roasted salsa) are the best in town. Other equally satisfying options include amarillito mole with roasted veggies and carne en su jugo (beef cooked in its own juices and tomatillo sauce), a staple dish in Guadalajara. Tetela is conveniently located inside World’s 50 Best Bars favorite Licorería Limantour, so don’t miss a mimosa or paloma, both great companions to a casual brunch.

A handled ceramic bowl brimming with leafy greens on a white countertop.
A dish at Tetela.
Tetela

Máximo Bistrot

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Chef Eduardo García is among Mexico’s best culinary talents. In 2020, his flagship fine dining restaurant, Máximo Bistrot, finally moved to a brand new location, a beautifully designed space filled with natural light. For García, the move provided a chance to revisit the menu, improving his classic dishes and creating new ones that celebrate Mexican flavors with a French twist.

Gloved hands apply sauce to four whole cauliflowers on a spit
Adding sauce to whole cauliflower
Máximo Bistrot [Facebook]

Maíz de Cacao

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If you are looking for a traditional Mexican breakfast, Maíz de Cacao is a good call. The small spot in Roma Norte focuses on culinary traditions of the Huasteca region, including lots of sweet and savory tamales. Try the varieties with corn, beans, or short rib with dry chile sauce, and don’t miss on the delicious black beans, fresh tortillas from the comal, and esquites topped with dry chili and sesame seeds. The traditional hot chocolate, prepared with cacao from Huasteca, is lovely and oh so frothy.

Tamales Madre

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Tamales are a morning ritual in Mexico City, best enjoyed in the relaxed, homey atmosphere of Tamales Madre. The restaurant offers varieties ranging from savory to sweet, wrapped in banana leaf or corn husk, but they’re all prepared with organic heritage corn, locally sourced ingredients, and vegetable shortening instead of lard (to make them lighter and vegetarian-friendly). Don’t forget to try the house favorite, a bean and hoja santa tamale served with a lightly perfumed tomato sauce, and pair your order with atole, prepared with seasonal fruit and nixtamalized masa.

A chef’s hand seen adding an herb for garnish on a finished tamale on a stone plate in a pool of sauce, with bowls of other ingredients nearby on the wooden countertop
Preparing tamales
Tania Barajas

Since Makan first opened in early 2021, it has lured diners to its small courtyard to enjoy Singaporean flavors paired with funky wines. Chefs Maryann Yong, who is Singaporean, and her Mexican partner Mario Malvaez present dishes like crispy pork belly with laksa, red snapper larb with fish sauce, and the famous Singaporean chicken rice. The wine selection is quite good as well, with bubbles, oranges, and reds from France and Spain. Mexico City locals are increasingly hungry for culinary projects like Makan that deliver flavors from different parts of the world, so competition is fierce for the tiny restaurant’s handful of tables; plan on making a reservation.

A roasted duck leg with a pile of noodles.
Duck and noodles.
Makan

El Sella

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The nearby hospital supplies most of the clientele at El Sella. Suited in white lab coats and blue scrubs, everyone is here for the chamorro, a braised pork shank served with an endless supply of tortillas. Chamorro is a popular dish made at many restaurants across town but this version is particularly succulent. Arrive early because the dining room fills up fast every day of the week.

Photo by Daniela Galarza

Los Tolucos

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This quaint restaurant sits along what Chilangos call Pozole Street for its multiple pozolerías — specializing in the savory, pork-based soup — crammed within a couple of blocks. What makes this Los Tolucos special? Its white, red, and green versions of the savory pork-based soups. The green variety gets its hue from pumpkin seeds and a potent herb sauce that’s stirred in at the end to thicken the broth. A carnitas taco on the side completes the experience.

White posole at Los Tolucos
Photo: Los Tolucos / Facebook

Churrería El Moro

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Churrería El Moro, an 85-year-old churro shop downtown that was gutted by a fire in 2010 and painstakingly restored to its original glory, merits a stop for the live show alone. In front of a grease-stained window, two churro makers pipe wet dough into smoking hot oil and spiral the long stream into a spiral rep. After a flip, they come out and are cut into pieces and tossed, fresh to order, in either plain sugar or a sugar-cinnamon mix. Get a bag to go or grab a table to enjoy them with hot chocolate.

Churreria El Moro
Churreria El Moro
Photo by Helen Rosner

El Cardenal

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A gorgeous landmark from another era, El Cardenal serves a fantastic upscale breakfast (it's also open for lunch and dinner). Order the chilaquiles, which arrive perfectly sauced and with some crisp left in each drowning chip. White tablecloths and suited waiters turn an everyday meal into an experience.

El Cardenal
El Cardenal
Photo: El Cardenal / Facebook

Taco Crawl in Centro Histórico

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Long after the stores close and most tourists return to their hotels, many taco spots in the city center remain open for late-night cravings. While you could explore the area on your own, for a bit of help tag along with Club Tengo Hambre, a local tour company with an adventurous food compass. Their after-dark taco tour in the Centro Histórico consists of an epic, multilocation, six-course menu covering the city’s essential styles like brisket, canasta, and al pastor, plus beverage pairings like pulque and beer. Do ask about the post-taco private tasting of Mexican spirits, a one-of-a-kind chance to sip mezcals from underappreciated regions like Durango and San Luis Potosí.

Tacos in Mexico City
Tacos in Mexico City
Club Tengo Hambre

Pujol

Over the years, the celebrated tasting and omakase menus at Pujol have evolved into fine dining multicourse experiences focusing mostly on vegetarian or pescatarian items. That’s still true under the direction of chef de cuisine Jesus Duron, who honed his perfect execution during his formative years while cooking in France’s top restaurants before accepting the baton from Enrique Olvera at Pujol. In Duron’s hands, each dish on the seasonal menus speaks to the restaurant’s values: sustainability, respect for traditional Mexican cooking and local ingredients, and innovation. Book at least two months in advance.

A chef plates scorch marked green beans over puree on a tortilla.
Plating at Pujol.
Pujol

Los Tres Reyes

It is said that the Gonzalez family — which runs three separate barbacoa spots in town — goes through more than 100 pasture-raised lambs each weekend, wrapping them in agave leaves and roasting them in an underground pit. The resulting barbacoa consomé is a mind-bendingly heady concoction, fortified with all of the slow-cooked lamb drippings. Los Tres Reyes is only open on weekends, but around 10 a.m. each Saturday and Sunday the Norteño band arrives and the beer begins to flow. Meat is sold by the pound, with sides like tortillas and avocado sold separately.

Outside of Los Tres Reyes
Photo: Los Tres Reyes / Facebook

Quintonil

Through the end of 2022, Jorge Vallejo’s fine dining restaurant in Polanco, Quintonil, is celebrating its 10-year anniversary with a monthly dinner series in partnership with fellow 50 Best Restaurants chefs from all over the world. Rodolfo Guzman, Junghyun Park, and Mitsuharu Tsumura have already graced the kitchen. (Follow the restaurant’s social media for details.) If you come on any other night, you can still enjoy Quintonil’s fixed eight-course menu or a la carte options representing the best of Mexican cuisine. Opt for a seat at the bar for the best view of the action during dinner service.

Viernes Media Lab

La Ventana del Ticuchi

Enrique Olvera’s small outdoor eatery, La Ventana del Ticuch, is one of the best places to have breakfast or lunch in Polanco. The menu, produced by a beautiful kitchen centered around the comal, includes Oaxacan corn-centric specialties like tetelas, tamales, and tlayudas prepared with Olvera’s characteristic attention to detail. The menu can change according to the season and product availability (remember to ask about daily specials), but look out for the crowd favorite: the esquite tamale prepared with corn kernels, mayo, and cheese. Take time to explore the drink menu, which taps into traditional Mexican fermented beverages like tepache, and corn or fruit-based agua fresca infusions.

A top-down close-up on two fried eggs in dark sauce with cooked hoja santa leaves and chili salsa on top.
Huevos al comal with hoja santa.
La Ventana del Ticuchi

Siembra Tortillería

Located in the fancy Polanco district, Siembra Tortilleria works with native Mexican corn to produce the most delicious and colorful tortillas. Besides devoting most of their kitchen labor to tortillas, tlacoyos, sopes, and totopos, they also offer a small corn-centric menu, where a variety of tacos and tamales appear weekly alongside fresh salsas from the molcajete. Asada, carnitas, barbacoa, and shrimp tacos are among the favorites, as are the cochinita tamales. Stop by for a meal on the go, but don’t expect to linger at the casual window setup too long.

Mari Gold

Chefs Norma Listman and Saqib Keval created this casual mix of Mexican and Indian cuisines. Located in the San Miguel Chapultepec district, Mari Gold offers breakfast and lunch menus in constant evolution, with vegetarian stews like chickpea chole served with a fried egg and tortillas, or a fried fish bun with achaar mayo. A short but stellar wine list and super-friendly service round out the experience.

Ciena

Ciena flourished in the middle of the pandemic with its well-edited menu and sleek yet cozy vibes. Located in Condesa, the place is perfect for a weekend brunch with bloody marys or casual dinner with vermouth on the rocks. Chef Ana Paula “Pavi” Ancheta created a menu with Mediterranean accents, focusing on ingredients sourced from local farms with sustainable practices. Stop by for the aperitif hour, where you’ll find small bites like fried polenta along with heartier bites like roast beef sandwiches, before diving into Condesa’s nightlife scene.

A crisp restaurant exterior with rounded white walls and light wood awning, over several simple outdoor tables set with flowers.
Outside Ciena.
Ciena

Restaurante Nicos

A long-time player in Mexico City’s fine dining scene, Nicos continues setting the bar for traditional Mexican restaurants with its impeccable service and commitment to sourcing local and sustainable ingredients. Located in the Azcapotzalco neighborhood, Nicos is well worth the Uber ride to enjoy seasonal dishes like chile en nogada or cacahuazintle pozole prepared with fall corn. The ambiance is formal but not stuffy, and the guacamole and salsas prepared tableside continue to lure diners from all over town. 

Nicos Tequila Cart
Photo by Helen Rosner

Saint

Located in a quiet corner in Condesa, Saint has become a neighborhood darling for excellent pastries and sourdough bread. The place offers a short but sweet menu with small bites like a salami and peperonata sandwich and a bacon brioche that can be paired with a reliable cup of coffee during the day or a glass of wine as the afternoon sets in. The croissant, pain au chocolat, and Spanish-style cheesecake are all musts.

Anonimo

Anonimo sits at a busy intersection in Condesa, but inside the restaurant instantly sets diners at ease with its casual warmth and attentive service. The menu has a distinctive Italian influence. Don’t skip the risotto with octopus and aioli, or the quelite ravioli with queso Chiapas. The restaurant offers a wide selection of raw wines, with several options to explore the local juices of the grape.