Best Chefs of Mexico
There is no shortage of fabulous places to eat in Playa del Carmen and foodies can celebrate with the Best Chefs of Mexico . For more information, see the The Daily Meal
The four-night October fiesta called “The Best of Mexico Riviera Maya” will be held Oct. 5 – 9 in Playa del Carmen. The prestigious event will feature 10-course tasting menus of original dishes honoring the richness of Mexican cuisine through the use of ingredients, seasonings, and techniques from the country’s different regions. The 5 world renowned chefs participating in the event are:
Chef Carlos Gaytan from Chicago!!!!
Chef Carlos Gaytan was named “Chef of the Year” in 2011 by the American Culinary Federation. He created a revolution in Mexican gastronomy with his Chicago restaurant Mexique, which has been celebrated with a Michelin star and awards from Michelin Bib Gourmand. Mexique opened in May of 2008, in Chicago. Now world renowned, Chef Gaytan is one of the Best Chefs of Mexico and with great creativity, love, and dedication he applies his knowledge of French cooking techniques and ingredients to his roots of traditional Mexican cuisine, creating a revolution of Mexican gastronomy.
Mexique has received much recognition since its opening, including one of Chicago magazine’s top new restaurants of 2009, best restaurant of 2010 and received its first star in the Michelin Guide in 2013.Most recently Carlos was awarded “Chef of the Year 2011,” by the American Culinary Federation.
Check out the Mexique website for menu and reservation information.
Chef Francisco “Paco” Ruano, Guadalajara
Chef Francisco “Paco” Ruano began his culinary journey in Spanish Basque Country at the Escuela de Cocina Luis Irizar, then throughout Europe in some of the best restaurants in the world, such as Spain’s Mugaritz and El Celler de Can Roca, and Noma in Denmark. In 2013, he opened Alcalde restaurant, widely considered one of the best in Guadalajara’s exciting new dining scene. He’s considered one of the Best Chefs of Mexico.
Chef Mikel Alonso
Chef Mikel Alonso’s restaurant, Biko, is regularly named among the world’s 50 Best Restaurants. Biko is all about ‘techno emotional’ cooking – a term commonly associated with Spain and the progressive cuisine of chefs such as Ferran Adrià – the stuff most diners familiar with the style used to call molecular gastronomy.
Under executive chef Xavi Perez Stone (“Best Chef in Mexico” 2013 and winner of “Iron Chef 2014”) and alongside chef Bruno Oteiza, Alonso, one of the Best Chefs of Mexico, created the singular menu at Velas’ Cocina de Autor, in Playa del Carmen, the first all-inclusive restaurant to earn Five Diamonds from AAA. Food & Wine also named it among the world’s “100 Best New Food & Drink.
Chef Ricardo de la Vega, Mexico City
Chef Ricardo de la Vega’s passion for the culinary arts has taken him to leading Mexican hotels and restaurants in Puebla, Oaxaca, Yucatan, and Quintana Roo. As executive chef of Frida in Playa del Carmen, he focuses on modern explorations of Mexico’s culinary riches. He is widely considered to be one of the Best Chefs of Mexico
Chef Zahie Téllez, Mexico City
Chef Zahie Téllez’s culinary style blends her love for Mexican and Italian cuisine, enriched by her Lebanese and Mazatec roots. She’s greatly admired for her cooking skills as demonstrated for six seasons on television’s “El Gourmet,” as well as her popular restaurant, Jose Guadalupe Platos de Cuchara in Playa del Carmen and is considered one of the Best Chefs of Mexico .
The tastings take place at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya. Nightly rates start at $393 per person per night based on double occupancy, and include a luxury suite, à la carte gourmet meals at a variety of specialty restaurants, premium beverages, 24-hour in-suite service, and more.
We are constantly updating our list of Best Restaurants in Playa del Carmen. These are our recommendations for the Best Restaurants in Playa del Carmen July, 2016
1. Romeo, Best Italian in PDC. My husband is Italian and he tells people this is the best Italian food he’s had in his life. I love the Spinach Ravioli with Truffle Oil. We took our family, a group of 12, and they had everything from pizza, to gnocchi, to seafood and everyone raved about the food, and we actually went back one more time before they left. Prices are modest, ($10 US entrees) food is outstanding. It’s a little place, so call ahead and make a reservation 984-141-6507 or stop by after 4 pm. It’s on Calle 4, between 10th and 15th. Good chance for tourists to get off 5th Ave. To-go and Delivery is available.
2. Plank The first restaurant in the Riviera Maya to win a 5 diamond award from the Academy of Hospitality Sciences. Terrific menu, great food and service, lovely place, great location. Open for dinner nightly and weekend brunches. I love the tasting menu! The brunches are the best I’ve ever experienced with the widest variety of food. The chef, Juan Diego is phenomenal. Located on Calle 16, between First and 5th Ave., in the Porto Playa Condo/Hotel Building. Medium priced restaurant (Guests at our properties receive a 20% discount on Thursdays) Plank Website For reservations you can email email@example.com or call +52 (984) 803 0108 +52 (984) 168 7025
3. Oh Lala, International Cuisine by George is always a favorite, but you need to book at least 3 weeks in advance or be willing to eat after 9 pm. They will only take parties of 6 or less so that they can provide the highest level of service. The restaurant is small, with seating inside and outside, but spacious in that tables are not crowded together. The food is delicious with high attention to service. A bit higher priced, but well worth it. Located at Calle 14 north Bis, between 10th Av. and 15th Av. Playa del CarmenOh Lala restaurant in Playa del Carmen website
4. La Brocherie I love this place! Fabian had a restaurant in Paris, then New York, and now Playa del Carmen. He and his parents and wife bring French chicken to Mexico. It is succulent and the desserts are the best in the Riviera Maya, so save room for dessert! The restaurant is small, with plastic tables and chairs, but it fills up nightly and is not something to miss. It is located on 15th Ave, between 4th and 6th.
La Brocherie is open Monday-Saturday from 10:30am-9:oopm Closed Sundays. Modest prices.
To-go and Delivery is available. Their number is 147 8683 or cell 984-117-7210
5. Nau is fairly new, but great concept, food, and ambiance. Excellent atmosphere with great fresh food (best fish choices! but they do have meat options as well) and some great gin drinks. I’ve never been much of a gin drinker but this place has some great recipes that are fantastic on a hot Mexican night.
Quality meals with top notch service. Medium priced. Nau Restaurant in Playa del Carmen Website For reservations, call Tel: +52 1 984 197 4121 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
6. El Fogon is our favorite authentic Mexican restaurant, and you’ll see it’s where the locals eat. Menu is in Spanish, and the wait staff speaks only a little English, so you look around to see what dishes come out and ask what they are, and use your head and Google translate to decipher the menu. The food is fantastic, service is terrific and the prices are very inexpensive. The folks at El Fogon are extremely friendly and they will do everything they can to make your experience one you’ll remember. Located on North side of Constituyentes, between Calle 25 and 30. No reservations or delivery, but they offer carryout.
7. Imprevist is another favorite and another outstanding restaurant by Chef Juan Diego. They offer an outstanding breakfast and brunch daily with a choice of seating in air-conditioned dining room or outside on an open-air patio, overlooking a quaint and quiet cobblestone street. Very European – like Playa. At night under candles and twinkly lights it becomes a cozy and intimate dining experience. Gourmet menu is comprised of seasonal flavors featuring fine selections of Prime Sea foods, USDA certified Beef and Chicken, Salad Medleys and Risottos. I strongly encourage reservations for dinner. (984) 168 70 25 / 26 or email: email@example.com. Imprevist Restaurant Website
8. Aguachiles is a very inexpensive place to order tacos and has great margherita’s, is close to our properties and is a favorite lunch spot or place to go get a quick bite. It’s changed owners and menus, but is still a favorite. You can order a variety of different small tacos that are very tasty. It’s on Constituyentes, beteen First and Fifth Ave. No need for reservations
9. Wah-Wah is a beach bar/restaurant that we love to go to for lunch. They have the best grouper sandwiches (don’t forget to order the garlic Parmesan french fries). We go here for lunch only, and most days there is someone playing guitar and singing beach songs like Jimmy buffet or Zac Brown. Great way to spend an afternoon.
10. Indigo Beach Club. Nothing like having a really nice breakfast buffet on the beach. Great lunch menu and drinks as well . Service is terrific and sometimes you’ll have a celebrity sighting because this is the place to hang out during the day! They can also handle small parties at night – loads of fun, Love the place! They are open from 7 am to 8 pm daily.
Babe’s Noodles and Bar, just off 5th Ave. between Calle 5 and 10 is open for lunch and dinner. Babe’s is a Swedish owned Restaurant and Bar with speciality Thai noodles and an Asian European kitchen. The bar makes the best mojitos, blueberry daiquiris, margaritas, smoothies and juices. Everthing is freshly prepared at the time you order.
Los Aguachiles is located on the corner of Avenida 25 and Calle 34. Hands down the best taco place in the Mayan Riviera. It’s fresh, healthy, and where the well-to-do locals go. It closes around 5 and don’t be surprised if there’s a short wait for a table – it’s worth it! Tacos are all made with fresh ingredients that have either been sauteed in olive oil or cooked ceviche style in fresh lime juice.
Fusion on the beach is south of Porto Playa a couple of blocks and has great bruschetta and ceviche. It’s great for lunch and beautiful for dinner on the beach. The menu is limited, but grilled fish, and calamari are good. They put torches in the sand and if it’s a nice night you can see the lights at Cozumel. Read the Trip Advisor reviews.
Wicky’s is a restaurant that opened at El Faro’s, right on the beach. Terrific ambience, fabulous steaks ($30-$35), too pricey wine (California wine is $16 a glass), beach band during the day. More than one person has told us it’s the best steak they’ve had in their lives. Folks that run Wicky’s are from Colorado and they ship in their own beef. Great place to have a drink and sun bathe during the day. Read the Trip Advisor reviews.
Alux (pronounced “a-loosh”) is a restaurant and nightclub located in a cenote (a cave formed by underground rivers). The entrance is impressive; you descend a great rock staircase surrounded by tiki torches to the reception area. (It looks a lot like the “Tribal Council” area on Survivor.) Candelabras, coloured lights, and flowing water adorn places throughout the cave.