On my way to find the tourist bus (which never happened!), Tacos Hola jumped out at me as I was walking by because there were throngs of people surrounding the place at 12:30, always a good sign. It is pretty much a hole-in-the-wall type of eatery, where you walk in, order your taco – there are bowls of all the ingredients on the counter- and add your own hot sauce, salad etc. Then you just eat where you stand out on the street. I had two, the chicharron with guacamole and rice (chicharron is like pork crackling but soggier – not great on its own i would imagine but delicious with guac…hey what isn’t delicious smothered in the sweet nectar of the avocado!), then i decided to go for the choriza con queso with fried beans. OH MY GOD. Words can’t describe it.
As I walked up the road afterwards I regretted not getting another one! But I made up for it in the following days that’s for sure. The tacos cost the princely sum of $16 mexican pesos each. Which is basically the equivalent of one euro. ONE! Since then, I’ve found cheaper tacos for sure, that were also delicious as well but Tacos Hola definitely rates as some of the best.
El Faraon Taquerías, a taco place just around the corner from the hostel I stayed at on Colima (Roma/Condesa area), was another yummy taco place but nothing can compare to Tacos Hola! It’s a chain with a few other restaurants dotted around Mexico. I tried the chuleta con queso (pork chop with cheese) and the pechuga (chicken breast) taco, both served with lots of different spices and onions/tomato salsa.
Cafe Expresso – right beside Hostel 333 on Colima, this little cafe offers breakfast, lunch and dinner and is reasonably priced. The first morning I went with Rosa and Sebi, my new Spanish friends, and got a large coffee and a ham and cheese chapata, served with a spicey sauce and side of jalapenos. Really tasty and a great start to the day!
Just around the corner from the hostel I went to a local restaurant for some dinner with Mariano and Marty, two really nice Argentinian guys staying at the hoste too. Can’t remember the name of the place for the life of me but I got the burrito marisco which was a giant burrito with prawns and vegetables accompanied with a delicious spicy picante salad and guacamole. We had a beer and then to finish off the meal, my first mezcal with orange slice YUM!! It was so nice, really warming and quite strong but not too bad! Mezcal is a distilled alcoholic drink made from the maguey plant native to Mexico (a form of agave), similar to tequila but in my opinion MUCH nicer. Most mezcal comes from the Oaxaca region and there’s a famous saying there regarding the drink: “para todo mal, mezcal, y para todo bien también” which means “for everything bad, mezcal, for everything good as well” – I like it!
La Capital – when I met up with my friend Dee, she took me and an Australian friend Alex who was staying at my hostel out to dinner with her friends at La Capital in Condesa. The restaurant serves traditional Mexican food with a modern twist in a really nice setting. I had the most delicious lychee margarita and myself and Dee shared swordfish and tuna tostadas to start followed by duck enchiladas – que rico! We enjoyed a few micheladas (beer served in a salt rimmed glass with lime juice and assorted spices, sauces and peppers) and although it certainly wasn’t a backpacker budget place, it was a treat and certainly worth every peso.
I took Alex to Tacos Hola on my last day in Mexico City for some more delicious tacos. This time I tried the nopales (cactus leaves) which was really yummy, especially accompanied with guacamole of course! I had read that they did a great ‘al pastor’ (a dish developed in Mexico, likely as a result of the adoption of the shawarma spit-grilled meat brought by Lebanese immigrants to Mexico), but they didn’t have any, so I asked the guy who worked there and he recommended El Farolito which was a short(ish) walk away in Condesa. I got the ‘tostada volcán’ al pastor, which was delicious, melty cheese on top of the al pastor meat…nom!
Kuui cafe – on my final morning in Mexico City I met a Canadian girl who recommended this cafe just down the road from the hostel on Av Insurgentes, a small organic cafe/art gallery. I ordered a hearty breakfast ‘huevos a la mexicana’ which was a large serving of eggs with tomato and onion, refried black beans and toast.