Mariscos Durazo Negro
The location could not be worse; you rather take your life in your hands trying to get into the awkwardly located little shopping center where Mariscos Durazo Negro is located. But the danger and effort are worth it because the seafood is PDD (pretty damned delicious)
Met up with a couple of friends there today for lunch. Crisp, thick Mexican style tortilla chips hit the table along with a little monkey dish of salsa almost as quickly as our derrieres hit the seats. The chips and salsa are necessary to help you wade through the massive menu that was clearly designed and laid using the Mexican chaos theory...i.e don't worry about getting from Point A to Point B, just know that you'll get there in one piece (if you've ever ridden in a Mexican taxi, you'll understand this). There are hot appetizers, cold appetizers, tacos, empanadas, burritos, a child menus, plates, combo platters for 2, 3, 4 and 6 people, soups, tostadas, ceviches, molcajetes, complete with photos, descriptions and even English translations...in other words, your basic Mexican mariscos joint. But, boy of boy, are they ever serving up so satisfying seafood.
First things first we ordered drinks. No fancy-schmancy craft beer here, not even a trendy Mexican craft brew from TJ. Just the usually Modelo, Pacifico, DosXX, Corona and a Bud or two. We settled for a DosXX, Pacifico and a Michelada. Bonus points to the waitress for asking if the 'Chelada was the lime or tomato version. Too many bars assume it's alwasy tomato. The beers were cold and it's fun to drink out of a long neck every now and again.
After plowing through all 8 pages of the menu we settled on 4 items intending to share...the medium sized shrimp cocktail (coctale de camaron), a shirmp and octopus cocktail (cameron y pulpo coctale), 3 empanadas, shrimp, crab and marlin, and finally the Huachinango Zarandeado.
The shrimp cocktail and the shrimp and octopus cocktail were outstanding, the Huachinango Zarandeado was excpetional. The shrimp and crab empanadas were good, the marlin underwhelming, but compared to the other dishes, I'm not sure I'd order them again.
The shrimp in the shrimp cocktail and the octopus cocktail were firm but not over cooked; the octopus tender and somewhat mild. Huachinango (true red snapper) is not native to these parts and the fish on our table didn't much resemble one. I don't know what it was, rock cod? a snapper cousin from the Sea or Cortez? at any rate it was perfectly cooked, moist, tender with hints of smokiness from the grill.
Like most Mexican restaurants there were competing televisions in various parts of the place. It was somewhat noisy at 1 pm in the afternoon but we didn't have much trouble carrying on a conversation. I understand it does get a lot nosier in the evenings, and they have live bands (banda and norteño) on some night.
In an unlikely location, this place is doing some stellar seafood. Worth seeking out and it saves a trip SOB and the challenging return crossing with lengthy lines.