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Antigua, GT: Metiz Delicatessen Frances--Excellent cheeses, cured meats, and the best rillettes I've ever had

JoanN Apr 3, 2012 04:53 PM

This is a new French deli, opened at the end of 2011. It’s located at 4a Avenida Sur No.1, just half a block south of the Cathedral off Parque Central. The owner, Bernard, a young Parisian expat, is very happy to give you samples of the cured meats and cheeses. Most people seem to be buying sandwiches, and he has a quite an impressive list. But I go for the superb imported prosciutto and simply outstanding house-made and jarred pork and duck rillettes. I’ve never had better rillettes anywhere, not even in Paris.

There’s only one table in the shop so this more of a takeaway than eat-in place. But there is no better place in town for putting together a little picnic basket. Cheeses and meats vary, depending on what he’s been able to buy locally as well as import. But everything I’ve tried has been good to superb. Especially those rillettes. Not cheap, at least not by Guatemalan standards. But worth every quetzal.

  1. h
    Hungry Celeste Jun 14, 2012 02:52 PM

    Any idea of the hours?

    2 Replies
    1. re: Hungry Celeste
      JoanN Jun 14, 2012 06:06 PM

      Sorry, I don't. I usually went in the early afternoon.

      1. re: JoanN
        Hungry Celeste Jul 10, 2012 04:48 AM

        Metiz is a compact little spot; didn't try a sandwich, though the deli case was filled with imported stuff. The counter clerk was friendly. Also has a small selection of teas, chocolates, and a small freezer case w/macarons, ice creams, etc.

    2. JoanN Dec 26, 2013 08:31 AM

      A heads up that Metiz Delicatessen has moved a couple of blocks north to 4 Avenida Norte No. 4. I hear that they have expanded their menu considerably, and with more room, they have more seating. I'll be back in March of '14 and am very much looking forward to trying some of their new offerings.

      8 Replies
      1. re: JoanN
        Worldwide Diner Jan 18, 2014 07:57 PM

        I'm thinking about visiting Antigua towards the end of May for a week and staying at Soleil La Antigua. Can someone give me some feedback about how safe it is to walk there at night by myself from city center? And suggestions for places to eat and drink. I'm not a coffee/breakfast person so just lunch/dinner recommendations as well as English friendly bars. Although I'll be on vacation, I don't want to pack on weight. I prefer seafood and avoid starches, but I'm not averse to eating weird things. I think I'll spend considerable time at the market so suggestions that won't upset stomachs would be greatly appreciated.

        1. re: Worldwide Diner
          JoanN Jan 19, 2014 06:28 AM

          I spend two to three months in Antigua every spring and feel perfectly safe, as a single, older, woman, walking around the center of town at night. That said, Soleil La Antigua is right on the edge of town. I’m sure it would be safe up to the hotel, but begins to be less safe heading southwest past it. A lot depends on how much bar hopping you intend to do and how late at night you plan on returning to your hotel. I wouldn’t want to go staggering back to that location at 2:00 a.m. after hanging out at the mezcal bar all night.

          You’ve probably already discovered that if you search this board for “Antigua, GT” you’ll find dozens of recommendations for where to eat, fewer for where to drink. Restaurants and bars open and close frequently, so some places may no longer exist. But most of the standbys, Hectors, Sobremesa, Bistro Cinq, Epicure, and Sabe Rico are all still there as are the high end hotel restaurants, and you should be able to find healthy meals at all of them although there may be only a single fish dish on the menu. Never been, but Rainbow Cafe offers a number of vegetarian options. For fish and seafood I would specifically check out Izakaya and the hole-in-the-wall ceviche place on the Roman Road, north of the mercado, at about 1st Calle. Hugo’s Ceviche started out as a cart just south of the mercado, and they may still have one there, although there is now also a brick-and-mortar restaurant.

          As for bars, there are probably three on every block and a lot depends on what you’re looking for. Some tend to be frequented by the older ex-pat crowd, others by the young language students. Cafe Sky has great views, but lousy mixed drinks and I’d stick with beer. The roof of El Sereño is lovely at sunset, also with great views, but it’s more of a romantic spot for cocktails and doesn’t draw a crowd. Ocelot, Michos, and Reilly’s are all bar hangouts. Mono Loco is a North American-style sports bar that tends to draw a younger crowd, and a very noisy and enthusiastic one when there’s a Barça game on. I hear there are a number of new or renamed bars on the block of the arch that have become quite popular in the short time they’ve been open.

          The mercado: I shop there all the time, but I’m not sure what you’d be looking for since you’re staying in a hotel. You’re not planning on doing any cooking, are you? If it’s just fruit and vegetables you’re looking for, you can buy a disinfectant at Bodegona, the supermarket. I believe the brand they carry is Microdyn. I either peel the fruit and vegetables or wash them in the disinfectant and have never had a problem. The only thing I’d avoid at the mercado is the prepared food; even most of the locals I know don’t trust that.

          1. re: JoanN
            Worldwide Diner Jan 19, 2014 07:23 AM

            I was hoping to try the prepared food at the mercado, but I wasn't sure if I should. You just crushed my dreams, thanks dream crusher.

            I doubt I'll be out drinking past 10 p.m. Btw, are there casinos or sports books in Guatemala?

            1. re: Worldwide Diner
              JoanN Jan 19, 2014 07:43 AM

              The type of prepared food you'd find in the mercado can be found being sold from carts in front of La Merced on the weekends and from people who sell such things as tamales and tacitos from their doorways. That, I eat. Just not the food from the mercado where it's been sitting out, surrounded by flies, for who knows how long. You also might check out La Cuevita de Urquizu, which used to be strictly street food but has become somewhat gentrified, touristy, and considerably more expensive over the past few years.

              No casinos in Antigua and I have no idea what a sports book is. I believe the only casino is in Guatemala City, but I've never been and know nothing about it.

              1. re: JoanN
                Worldwide Diner Jan 19, 2014 08:32 AM

                Thanks for the recommendations. Should I spend an entire week at Antigua, or should venture around?

                Btw, Soleil la Antigua is part of RCI's timeshare exchange. So I can stay the entire week at no additional cost, but is it worth it to spend a night or two in Guatemala City, for sightseeing, eating, etc.?

                1. re: Worldwide Diner
                  JoanN Jan 19, 2014 09:21 AM

                  No need to spend any time in the capital, but it would be a shame to visit Guatemala without visiting Lake Atitlan (I'd add Tikal, but that's probably more of a time commitment than you'd want to make). The lake is spectacular. You could spend a night in one of the villages or in Panajachel. The food scene in Pana isn't all that interesting. The most popular hangout, with both locals and ex-pats, is The Circus Bar: pizza, pasta, live music, and good drinks.

                  1. re: JoanN
                    Worldwide Diner Jan 19, 2014 10:38 AM

                    I can say something douchey like I've been to Chichen Itza and if you've seen one pyramid you've seen them all. The truth is Tikal is a hike. The trip involves getting picked up at the hotel at 4 a.m. I have to think long and hard about whether I want to do it. I'll have to look into Lake Atitlan. I've been to Peru twice but I never made it to Lake Titicaca.

            2. re: JoanN
              Worldwide Diner Jan 20, 2014 03:17 PM

              I just booked my trip. I will be there the week of Memorial Day. Maybe you can give me an update on where to go eat after your trip. Price is not important and I'll eat anything that's good. I won't stick to seafood if there's only one fish dish. I remember eating the same fish dish years ago when I was in Costa Rica. What was good on day 1 got really tedious by day 3. I don't normally eat bread and potatoes but I'll eat good pasta. I also inevitably crave stir fried vegetables because I love greens (either Chinese of Thai).

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