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Cancun dinner recommendations

We've just booked a trip to Cancun for a 5 night stay at the ME by Melia in February. We plan to eat a few meals at their restaurants (Silk and Salt) and would appreciate recommendations on menu items at both of those places, as well as other restaurant recs in Cancun.
We don't plan to rent a car so we'll have to cab it to restaurants that aren't in walking distance, so please factor that in. Would appreciate anything from local dives to formal restaurants.
We honeymooned in Los Cabos and loved the authentic Mexican food there, and while I'm sure the local cuisine may differ on the east coast of Mexico, we hope we might be able to find some similar options. We're really not picky with cuisine though so if you have other recommendations, please share. Thanks!

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  1. well i can't really comment on cancun itself, as i stayed on isla mujeres(seemed like cancun was just a resort-like las vegas), but if you had a chance to get over to that island(which is amazing!) i'd highly recommend super taqueria on the main strip.

    1. I just spent a few days there right after new year's and I've been blogging about a few places (http://gourmettravel.blogspot.com/)...
      Cancun though is very touristy and very expensive, that's my main gripe about it :P
      I do recommend the food at La Destileria (across from Plaza Kukulkan, from hotel zone to here was $9 cab. I don't remember where the ME is, sorry).

      Also tried the Crab House and found it to be so so, kinda disappointing since they were out of their local crab (which was what was recommended to us)!!! I haven't blogged about it since I wasn't so excited about it.

      1. I'm sorry but I can't help but laugh at people who claim that Cancun is touristy. There's no question that cancun has its tourist traps and they're very big and obvious. My suggestion is forget the rental car, forget the cab, and except for one restaurant I say get the hell out of the Hotel Zone. Most of the places in and around the hotel zone are extremely americanized and very touristy, I suggest you take the bus down to el centro and just wander around, get lost and have some fun. Trust me the area is very safe, my cousin and I were wandering around at 3am down back alleys and we had no problems. One of the restaurants I really like in el centro is La Parilla, you'll have to get walking directions but it's very good, another good place for slightly cheaper is called El Pescador. The ONLY restaurant I recommend in the hotel zone is Captain's Cove, it's more expensive but extremely tasty and very good, I suggest the lobster enchiladas.

        3 Replies
        1. re: hungry_fox

          I agree, you must leave the hotel zone for good food. I learned this too late, after a handful of high priced mediocre meals I ate at La Parilla, it is the only restaraunt I can recommend. I was not impressed with Captains Cove. I had the Lobster Enchiladas and if it wasn't for the distinctive fishy/ iodine tast, I would swear they forgot to add the lobster. We also had some great fresh fish during a snorkeling tour on Isla Mujeres, but that was not really a restaraunt, you have to go on the tour. The snorkeling was $20 and the lunch was $5. By far the best deal we got on our vacation.

          You do not need a cab, take the bus for $0.65, its much more fun.

          1. re: hodgsond

            Hodgsond.. Do you happen to know the name of the snorkeling tour or who to contact for the tour on Isla Mujeres?

            Thanks!!

            1. re: amberiobrien

              They attack you like pirhannas as soon as you get off the boat. I rode the boat from Turtle Beach, I think? (Tortugas) I'm sorry I do not remember the name of the tour, but the office is in the same place as the boat dock.

        2. one restaurant i have never seen mentioned is a fish place in plazacarocol. ican't remember the name but it's good. we stay in the neighborhood and walk over a couple times during our stay. it is accessable from the lagoon side of the plaza, and also from the upper level inside.
          they always have fresh fish, prepared a number of ways, and sauced very lightly. the drinks
          are good , and the prices are fair. it's not a top place in the hotel zone, but very good just the
          same. i'm really bad with names but, this last year we found a place right in front, and across
          the parking lot from carocol; directly across the street from plaza la fiesta. it's an outdoor
          steakhouse serving choice US meat in an argentine style. i had a 10-12oz. filet with a very
          good chimichuri for $18 american. and great margaritas 2 for 1 for, i think, $5. again, just
          a place for the average joe. good food, fair price! have fun in cancun

          1. Hi Cancun has some very good restaurants I have been 8 times happy to share my favorites by food type.

            First I wll cover the steak house scene. Seems to be a huge influx the last few years in Cancun. The top 3

            Harry's ( http://www.harrys.com.mx ) It a very good steak house for Cancun similar to chains in the USA like Capital Grill etc. located across from the Ritz Carlton.

            Camblanche ( http://www.grupocambalache.com/cancun... ) This is an Argentiain themed steak house with a fairly large menu beyond just steak. I enjoy it while its not the best in Cancun for steak I have always enjoyed my meals here. It located at the Forum By The Sea Mall.

            Puerto Madero ( www.puertomaderocancun.com ) The same chain that owns Camblanche owns this place. Again an Argentiain them but modern and sleak inside with incredible sunset views of the lagoon. Steaks and seafood are top notch. This is my personal favorite in Cancun.

            Next Italian. Seems to be universal for restaurants all over the world. Cancun has some good places for Italian.

            La Madonna ( www.lamadonna.com.mx ) Located in La Isla Mall very good food with a dramtic decor. More of a tourist place but the location cant be beat.

            La Dolce Vita ( http://www.cancunitalianrestaurant.com ) Some people claim this is the best I didnt care for it however. I didnt dislike it I just have had better italian food in Cancun.

            Cennacolo ( http://www.cenacolo.com.mx ) In my honest opinion the best italian in Cancun beside Casa Ronaldi. Located in the Kuklucan mall.

            Casa Rolandi ( http://www.rolandi.com ) Locations around Cancun and surrounding area. VERY good food coming from New Endland and having endless italian restaurants (Federal Hill, Bostons North End) This rates highly.

            Finally Mexican and yucatan food.

            Labna ( http://www.labna.com/index.html ) Located downtown some of the best most traditional food in Cancun they have a sister restaurant owned by the same people La Habichuela ( http://www.lahabichuela.com/english/i... ) Both are excellent.

            La Destileria ( http://www.ladestileria.com.mx/cancun... ) If your looking for more traditional mexican. Not bad it is a chain but its good for what it does well and has a very good tequila selection.

            Thats most of the places in Cancun that I enjoy there are many many others I have eaten at (Club Grill @ the Ritz, Thai @ La Isla, MB @ Aqua) I hope they help and you have a great time in Cancun.