Report: Playa del Carmen, breakfast, lunch dinner
Just returned from an 8 day trip to PDC, as expected, the weather was hot and humid, the beach nice, waters warm and food pretty good.
Background: The group had omnivores, strict vegetarians, teetotalers and 2 kids ages 2 & 6; so the dining choices were limited. Also we live in NJ and work in NYC, on a daily basis we rarely ever repeat a cuisine; so eating Mexican/Mayan/Yucatecan everyday was not an option.
Summary: #1 Los Aguachiles for best ceviche, #2 Yaxche for best Mayan food, #3 Wicky’s for best view nice dinner. Not a single restaurant had AC on for dinner (mid July), painful.
Mega (30th and Constituyentes): For fresh fruits especially mangoes, guanabana juice & hot sauces to buy for home
Oxxo (15th and constituyentes): Buy milk, bread, butter, pasta
Wicky's: Excellent views, on the beach, probably the "best view place" we went to, drinks are good, see below for dinner
La Sirena: Went there after seeing good reviews, crappy extra sweet margaritas... did not eat.
Aldo (5th and 16th): Excellent ice-cream place, nice flavors like fig, mango, passion fruit along with other standards. Almost every day.
Hagen Dazs (5th & 30th?) As expected, nicer to sit than a typical one in NYC
Ah Cacao (5th and Constituyentes) Good coffee, pastries and ice cream, went once
Street Cart: (5th and 3rd) best churros, only thing I would eat from a cart.
Impervist: We stayed in Porto Playa Condos and breakfast was complimentary at this small restaurant on 1st between 16th and 14th, usual nice American, eggs, pancakes, waffles and French toast. The highlight was Chaya juice, which I liked a lot. We ate there every morning before heading out to the beach. Excellent service, real cutlery and linens.
Starbucks: (10th and 5th), one of the few places open at 7AM, decent coffee and OK baked goods bought for the early departure to Chichinitza.
Yo Tacos: NW Corner or 5th and Constituyentes. First meal in town, we were tired and went to the nearest and as expected a tourist trap. The food was sad/OK (guac, chicken taco, el pastor, veg quesadilla) but the hot sauces that came to the table were very nice.
Pizza Pazza: (5th and 14th) Excellent inexpensive pizza by the slice, thin crust squares a la Deans in NYC... Obviously not as good as Patsy's or Lombardy's in NYC but better than average and they taste great far from home. Kids favorite.
Babe's Noodles: (10th between 5th and 10th) Good mock Thai noodles and curries, good for veggies and home sick people. The best mint lemonade in the world (worth a visit just for this).
Hotel Chichinitza Restaurant: (Merida Cancun highway, Chichinitza) Can handle large groups. Buffet with a decent Mayan spread, pork, chicken, fish, make your own tacos... everything else was average but filling (veggie noodles), big salad spread, ok desserts. some good entertainment with traditional folk dances and everything tastes good after a long hot walk among the ruins.
Yaxche: (5th and 26th?) Dinner. Excellent Chaya & traditional Margarita, codzitos with potato, tsotobilchay, pibxcatic, cochinita pibil and the fiery show of cafe Maya. The best house habanero sauce.
Casa Tucan: OK, the guide books give it a better rating than it deserves... decent veggie choices though. International menu
Los Aguachilles: (Constituyentes between 5th and 1st) The best ceviche, got mixed shrimp + scallop in original spices. Large portions. Very good margarita. Sad veggie choices.
Maktub: (5th & 30th?) Decent place, again great veggies platter of the usual suspects, hummus, tabule, baba ganoush and OK shawarma sandwich. small, noisy, lively
Texas Burger: (5th and 24th?) Crappy burgers, crappy fries, OK onion rings (maybe I was looking for something to like)
Wicky's: Best views, great cool breeze dinner, OK crab cakes, decent mussels, excellent veggie & chicken pasta.
Kaxapa Factory: (Constituyentes west of 10ave): Venezuelan, excellent Arepas and kaxapa, a hole in the wall place, crappy ambience, great food.
Thanks to all others hounds who posted here and Veggo for adding color to the posts...
Thanks, and for your nice report, and glad your trip went well. Sounds like you sacrificed the indoor AC area of Wicky's (there aren't many) for the view from the deck - a tough call. The summer heat is exhausting.
I have not tried Babes mint lemonade, as their mojitos are so good.
Chaya is a fun new experience and it grows locally, almost like a weed. We used to make liquados with chaya and lime juice and honey- refreshing and sabroso.
I hope you saw the light show at Chichen Itza?
I'll be back in September and I appreciate you keeping us updated. Hasta luego.