If you're a first-time visitor to the city, you'll likely end up in Condesa, and rightfully so: This lush neighborhood of meandering streets, upscale shops, and hopping nightlife is one of the city's most famous. Centered around Parque México and Parque España, this beautiful neighborhood can sometimes be annoyingly fresa (a great piece of slang to know — a little bit bougie, a little bit superficial, a little bit hip) but in the end, it's an absolute charmer.Read More
Mexico City Neighborhood Guide: Condesa
A lush neighborhood of meandering streets, upscale shops, and hopping nightlife
1. Chiquitito Café
Now four years old, Chiquitito was an early entrant in the third-wave DF coffee scene. Their coffee is currently sourced from a small producer in Boca del Monte in Veracruz state and carefully shepherded through your choice of preparations: espresso, Aeropress, Chemex, pourover, or French press.
2. Nómada Heladería Condesa
Referring to themselves as an ice cream taller (workshop), the Nómada team are in an ongoing quest to make the best ice cream in town. Flavors change often and are made with local ingredients, from cardamom with a purée of tejocote fruit to mango with ancho chile liqueur.
3. El Centenario
Mexico City 06410, Mexico
Somehow this 1940s cantina avoided the gentrification that otherwise swallowed almost every old-school business in the neighborhood. It can be a cheery respite from other Condesa bars’ long waits and cacophonous music.
4. Fonda Mayora
Chef Gerardo Vásquez Lugo of the wildly acclaimed Restaurante Nicos in the north of the city opened this airy corner restaurant in Condesa last fall. Like Nicos, Fonda Mayora serves refined but unfussy variations on regional and family recipes. Keep an eye out for pork knuckle braised in the fermented pineapple-rind drink tepache, pacholas (a kind of meat tortilla common in Guanajuato state), and pork ribs with purslane in salsa verde. As a starter, the sopes de tuétano (bone marrow) are a must.
5. El Placer del Vino
Mexico City 06170, Mexico
When you need a break from mezcal and micheladas — or just want to explore the maturing mundo of Mexican wine — hit up this wine shop. The attached café has a number of affordable glass options and a very good tapas-style menu, and no corkage if you buy a bottle in the shop.
6. Tacos Gus
This daytime favorite opens at 9 a.m. and is revered for its rotating array of vegetarian tacos de guisados such as swiss chard, stuffed ancho chile, and lamb’s-quarters fritters. Among the dozens of bubbling cazuelas, you’ll find several meat options as well.
7. El Auténtico Pato Manila
Despite the many poultry dishes among the regional cuisines of Mexico, duck is surprisingly difficult to find in the city. Head to this modest taquería for duck tacos two ways: Tacos Kim, which are Peking Duck-style on crepe-like flour tortillas with scallions and cucumber, or Tacos Manila, Mexican-style on corn tortillas with beans and epazote. Either are perfect with a local craft beer.