Condesa and Roma Norte
I had 2 great food experiences today. No, not Pujol or Contramar- both out of my budget...
La Rauxa, Parras 15 (off Nuevo Leon) (No sign advertising name.. look for the address)
Chef Joaquin Jaril has operated his restaurant for several years, but only recently made the switch from Catalan to Mexican. He serves a 4 course comida at a set price of a whopping $69pesos (that's US $5.50!!). For a glass of house wine, add $30pesos.
This is not your standard comida. Today, I had a choice of 2 soups. A smooth black bean seasoned with Mole Amarillo de Queretaro, or a leek, potato and fennel. The chef suggested the Black bean. It was a simple soup, but the flavours and mild spicing were nicely balanced. A green salad with jicama and a creamy cucumber and herb dressing followed. Again, simple, but really nicely executed. There were several choices on the menu for mains.. I chose a whitefish (Carpenter?- I have to look it up) "Pastor", which came with rice, thinly sliced and sauteed zucchini, chayote and carrot and rice.
Finally, for dessert, a small square of bread pudding with chocolate, ginger and tabasco and a burnt sugar layer on top. I ordered espresso to go along with that.
My total.. $115 pesos. This is traditional Mexican comida with a twist from multicultural inspirations by a very sincere and warmly welcoming chef. It was such a pleasure to eat there (and not feel like I was counting my pennies)
Forgot to mention the Melon horchata.. similar to the usual horchata, but using melon seeds which gave it a touch of canteloupe flavour. I have to figure out how to make this.
Later.. I got hungry again.. and discovered just around the corner from where I was staying in Roma Norte:
Don Segundo Pizza
Take-out, delivery or stand at the order counter and enjoy truly the most delicious thin crust pizza I have had in many years (since I worked at renowned Al Forno in Providence, RI). Owner and chef, Gabriel Bourdin is from Argentina where his family also owned a pizza joint. Once again, simple, but so perfectly executed: a traditional cracker-crisp thin crust, topped with a perfect balance of toppings. I had 2 different slices: Anchovy and green olive, and a Prosciutto and Arugula. I was in heaven. Slices run $15-$25 pesos. Also on the menu, Calzones, Empanadas, salads and baguette sandwiches.
I saw this last week and finally got to Don Segundo tonight, and indeed the pizza is outstanding. Best I've had in Mexico City so far.
They were out of prosciutto and anchovy so I had the pepperoni and the Napolitana, and was in no way disappointed. As chef_hef described, cracker-thin crust, crispy to the tip. I expected that by-the-slice would mean pre-made but no, they cut out a wedge of dough and make it fresh. There's a red chile sauce and chimichurri if you're so inclined, but neither is extraordinary. And the usual salsa inglesa and Maggi. I don't remember if he said they have ketchup and didn't care.
I also had an empanada de carne picante, which was good, but the pizza is the star here.
The place was being run by three young guys who were extraordinarily friendly and enthusiastic about the food. ("Que tal con la pizza?" one said more than asked with a big smile as he left for a delivery.) I didn't ask but wonder if they might be niños or sobrinos of the owner. If they're not relatives then he's brilliant at hiring.
So, great find. Thanks, chef_hef, this really made my day and probably my week!
La Rauxa has been on my list for a while now. Will be going there soon.
re: Soul Vole
La Rauxa was before my time but it's been reopened (though remains officially nameless as far as I know). See Nick Gilman's post: http://goodfoodmexicocity.blogspot.co...
I ate there a couple weeks ago and had the "arrachera en salsa de chile morita". It was outstanding -- medallions of perfectly tender, perfectly cooked steak (not flank, I'm pretty sure) with thinly sliced carrot, calabacita, and other veg in a warming, smoky morita sauce. Also a really nice sopa de frijol con hoja santa and a salad, and a desert which I skipped (just 'cause I don't usually eat desert). Great food and an amazing deal at $69.
I'd be returning on a weekly basis if I didn't have a list of about 100 other places to eat my way through.