Picking the perfect restaurant can make or break a date. It can help establish that first impression and sway the mood in a favorable direction. Here, seven restaurants in Mexico City where the ambiance is just as warm and lovely as the food.
Celebrated chef Maycoll Calderon, who cut his culinary teeth while working for Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Ferran Adrià, whips up beautiful, wood-fired dishes featuring the freshest seafood and produce at this hot spot in the neighborhood of Roma. Plus, what could be more romantic than dining al fresco in an open patio under hundreds of twinkling lights?
At this beloved restaurant, chef Eduardo García – he previously worked at Pujol and New York’s Le Bernardin – melds the flavors and cooking techniques of Mexico and France. But unlike the dining rooms of his past, this one is free of formality of fuss. (It’s also wallet-friendly, so dig in.) The kitchen is open, so you can watch García and his team in action while you linger over your meal.
Though chef Josefina Santacruz has cooked in kitchens all over the world, it’s classic Asian snacks that shine on her menu – think pho, pork belly buns, and shumai – at this cozy nook in Roma. With low lighting, lots of light wood, and Asian-inspired art and knick knacks, it’s a fun spot to cozy up to someone over some shared plates.
It’s the restaurant’s design that will first captivate you. The 300-year old building was lovingly restored, and features striking details like volcanic stone walls, brick ceilings, and teardrop pendant lights. But ultimately, it’s the food – imagine artful takes on traditional fare, including insects like cocopaches and escamoles – that will keep you buzzing long after the meal is over.
Located on the ground floor of the posh Las Alcobas Hotel in Polanco, Anatol is the kind of rare restaurant that effortlessly appeals to all types of diners. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the globe-trotting menu by chef Justin Ermini features refined takes on classic comforts like mac and cheese, poutine, and roast chicken.
Don’t be fooled by the modest interior. If you’re looking for real deal sushi in Mexico City, this is the place. Tokyo-born chef Hiroshi Kawahito works with only the most pristine seafood, and recommends going with his omakase, so you and your date can be treated to the best selections of the day. Dinner here runs a bit on the pricy side, but we promise, it’s worth every peso. Don’t forget to wrap the evening with a slice of the custardy tofu cheesecake.
Another chic spot by Chef Josefina Santacruz, this one is tucked away in the hip neighborhood of La Juarez. Small, shared plates also rule the menu, but their flavors draw inspiration from the Middle East. Kick off your meal with the sweet and savory muhammara dip, before tucking into some fragrant couscous and kofta (Turkish meatballs).