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48 hours of street food in Mexico City – please help!

I’m stopping over in el DF on my way to the Mayan highlands, staying in Colonia San Rafael by the Metrobus Reforma, and excited to sample tasty treats, tanto chilango como de las provincias. No destination too obscure and no meat too organy. The internet has given me these ideas:

Thursday night: I will need innards and late night taco ambience. Perhaps Los Cocuyos in el centro or El Borrego Viudo in Tacubaya.

Friday culinary hike to Colonia Roma (El Hidalguense for barbacoa or Ricos Tacos de Guisado at Tlaxcala y Chilpancingo) and then along Calle López (Ricos Tacos de Toluca for chorizo and head cheese) to Mercado San Juan. On towards the centro to sample blue corn tlacoyos from the Poblanas across from San Miguel Church, Ricos Tacos de Mixiote Estilo Tulancingo or just drink and eat away the afternoon in Cantina La Mascota or Dos Naciones. More late night tacos: maybe El Huequito or El Tizoncito for adobada.

Saturday, perhaps start with sit-down at Fonda Margarita in Tlacoquemecatl del Valle, then hike through Viveros to Coyoacán for Tamales el Pino and the market for tostadas or quesadillas and an agua fresca. Maybe wander the Mercado Medellín Christmas market in Roma that night. Any recommendations around there?

Other highly recommended tasty treats? Is there some more far flung working class burg with awesome weekend food and ambience that I should check out? A somewhat rowdy bar for Saturday night cultural exchange?

Thanks for your insights!

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  1. Well you've clearly done some research. A few thoughts:

    * El Borrego Viudo - Popular place for sure and the tacos are good, but not so special that I'd go out of my way.
    * Mercado San Juan is in Centro, just so you know.
    * El Hidalguense is an excellent idea. Really good barbacoa and they have some exotic/unusual options like escamoles, gusanos de maguey, and pulque. Note that it's only a block from Mercado Medellín, so you should probably pair those up.
    * Have you considered Restaurante Chon (AKA Don Chon)? If you're looking for the exotic and adventurous, you should.
    * Between El Huequito and El Tizoncito for tacos al pastor (they both claim to have invented it and I assume that's what you mean by adobada), I'd definitely go to El Huequito.
    * If you've never tried carnitas de nana (pig uterus), they're pretty tasty and I know El Farolito is one place that has them (various locations).

    1 Reply
    1. re: Soul Vole

      Oh and for Saturday night bar scene I'd suggest you start at the top of Tamaulipas in Condesa and work your way down until something catches your eye. There's also Av. Michoacán and Nuevo León.

      Or better, Zona Rosa. Plenty of rowdy nightlife there.

    2. Ricos Tacos de Guisado is at the corner of Chilpancingo and Aguascalientes. I can see it from my home office window, which faces Aguascalientes.

      Quite good carnitas at a stand at the corner of Chilpancingo and Baja California, on the Baja California side of Panadería La Espiga.

      El Hidalguense is open Friday through Sunday, 7AM - 5PM.

      Which Thursday through Saturday will you be here? I need a trip to the Medellín Tianguis Navideño and might be persuaded to join you.

      Link: http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com

      5 Replies
      1. re: cristina

        Ooh, I'll have to try that carnitas place. And indeed there's a lot of street food in that area around Metro Chilpancingo. There are vendors at the intersection of Insurgentes and Baja California. One block west there's Av. Chilpancingo, lots of street food along there. Or go one block up to Av. Tlaxcala, or go down a block to Quintana Roo. Dozens of street food vendors within about a one block radius of that metro stop.

        1. re: Soul Vole

          Ooh, nice. Thanks for all the tips. I will definitely wander the streets around Metro Chilpancingo, on the look out for that carnitas/ñaña/buche. On your rec, I will start the festivities Thursday night at Los Cocuyos, unless you have another late night taco rec. For pre-Hispanic, I'll probably stick to black beans y tortillas recien salidas with my Mayan peeps.

          I'll be there Dec. 19-21!

          1. re: guide boy

            I haven't been to Los Cocuyos myself but it sounds like an excellent choice for you. Lots of praise for their tripa on Foursquare and it looks like they also have ojo and sesos.

            When you're at Metro Chilpancingo you might look for a tamal vendor in front of La Espiga that's a favorite of Roberto Santibañez: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/16/tra.... I don't know what her hours are. I've looked for her a couple times but she wasn't there.

            Buen provecho!

            1. re: Soul Vole

              She's only there in the mornings. Her relatives sell tamales on other nearby corners, including at Chilpancingo and Aguascalientes.

              Read more here:
              http://mexicocooks.typepad.com/mexico...

          2. re: Soul Vole

            It's been a few years since, but we had excellent quesadillas at the corner of Calle Manzanillo and Calle Tlaxcala. It's a day operation only.

            The original hole-in-the-wall Huequito is just a few blocks from Ricos Tacos Toluca and the El Caguamo seafood stand is about midway.

            There are some recent El Hidalguense photos starting here: http://tinyurl.com/nflusdz
            A good safe place to try pulque!

        2. Yep, Borrego Viudo is popular because its open late when folks get out of antros... God, but not worth going all the way over there. They do have tepache if you want to try it, but can't imagine you wouldn't find that in the Centro, too.

          I personally haven't ever loved the food at the Christmas market, but I might be missing the right place?

          I also would try Don Chon... The pre-Hispanic food from this area is very different from further suth where you are going.

          In San Rafael you are also close to La Oveja Negra barbacoa if you decide you want to hit something up before you hit the road.

          What's your definition of a rowdy bar? There's a ton, depends on your preferred scene.

          3 Replies
          1. re: gueraaven

            Gracias. Oveja Negra is on the list. I will skip el Borrego, and probably the antros. I think I'm more into all-comers cantinas and perhaps something a bit dodgy.

            That said, any food or strolling recs for some further flung working-class suburbio on the Metro, like Ciudad Neza. I get that tourists stay away from these places, but I'd love to check out such a burg.

            1. re: guide boy

              Well, this isn't a suggestion I would normally make but it might be up your alley -- Tepito. Anthony Bourdain is in town right now and apparently had breakfast and visited a cantina there.

              Tepito is famous for its enormous tianguis (street markets) with something like 10,000 vendors. Tepito itself and the tianguis date back to the Aztecs. It's also famous as a "barrio bravo", a very rough neighborhood with a lot of crime. A number of famous Mexican boxers and wrestlers came out of Tepito.

              You wouldn't want to go there at night, only during the day when there are crowds of shoppers. Wear plain clothes and no jewelry, leave wallets and purses behind, carry just enough cash as you need, and watch out for pickpockets.

              If you go, go at your own risk. But it is quite a fascinating neighborhood. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tepito

              1. re: Soul Vole

                Thanks Soul - I had no idea how bravo the neighborhood was. I bought a whole collection of contraband cassettes of cumbia colombiana and cuban rumba back in the day near there! I will check it out.

          2. Thanks for all your help on a great trip to the streets of El DF. Highlights:

            A zooty wander on a warm Friday afternoon along the Calle López culinary alley south of the Alameda, featuring:
            -- Ricos Tacos Toluca, López at Puente Peredo, for amazing tacos de obispo (a sublime Mexican spam), chorizo verde con almendra and campechana (chorizo and cecina), along with excellent salsas crudas
            -- A beautiful tlacoyo of beans, cheese and nopal from the Toluquera promoted by Street Gourmet LA, sitting in front of Ferreteria Casa Cadena, López just south of Delicias (I never got back to try the habas)
            -- Viernes Social with the schoolkids at the historic Pulquería Los Duelistas, Aranda 28, where I had about four liters of pulque de guayaba and apio con chile – woo hoo!
            -- Fonda Mi Lupita, Delicias y Buen Tono, for a taste of the seasonal specialties of mole de romeritos and bacalao
            -- And a couple of tasty jolts of espresso and left-wing conversation at Café Cordobés, López y Ayuntamiento.

            A Saturday trip to Coyocán and its mercado de comidas, around the corner from Parque Allende, feasting at Antojitos La Juana on amazing tostadas de pata and a great gordita de chicharrón, plus a licuado de alfalfa con limón, piña y guayaba from the seller across the market. Also, more nice espresso and conversation on the benches outside Café El Jarocho, Allende y Cuahtemoc, and decent but not fresh enough churros at Churrería Jordán, Aguayo y Cuahtemoc.

            Late at night, I stopped by Los Cocuyos, Calle Bolívar 54, in El Centro, for another feast, of tacos de suadero – totally expanding my suadero concept – and a taco with a whole slice of tender lengua. Damn!

            Sunday morning I flew out of Benito Juárez, but only after sneaking out of the Terminal 2 to Panatitlán, by walking down to Eje Norte 1, going left two blocks to Calle Rolando Garros, and left again, where flight attendants and airport workers crowded around the weekends-only street stand of Barbacoa Ivan, for great barbacoa, costilla and panza de borrego, with nice salsa verde, and accompanied by another great licuado from the spot on the nearby corner. Great alternative to the jammed Subway and Starbucks in the terminal. The barbacoa was far better than what I had at El Hidalguense in Colonia Roma. Go figure.

            Hasta la próxima!

            1 Reply