Sunday, January 26, 2014
Watching the Travel Channel and actually being there are different things; you cannot experience the actual taste of the food you are looking at or feel the Pacific surf on your feet from a Lazy-boy recliner. Case in point would be Sayulita, Nayarit, Mexico.
An hour plus north of Puerto Vallarta, lies a very bohemian town of surfers, artists and many ex-pats who basically just hang around all day. A lot of white people with dreads, (something I have never been able to figure out!) who eat seafood and drink beer. There is also the faint smell of weed wafting through the air, the most I’ve experienced in my many trips to Mexico…
WELCOME TO SAYULITA
Fishing boat off of the beach at Sayulita
Fish and Shrimp Tacos at El Itacate..the best in Sayulita…their opinion! Yes, they were very good!
VERY fresh fish tacos..
Four large shrimp (at least 10/12 size) on each taco..excellent!
South to El Tuito
One hour and twenty minutes south of Puerto Vallarta lies the tiny town of El Tuito, the place you go to buy the unregulated “beverage” Raicilla.
The clear, handcrafted liquid is essentially Mexican Moonshine that packs a punch. Don’t drink more than two shots! Enough said on that!
There is one small supermarket in El Tuito, but if you really want the good stuff, just ask anyone and they will direct you; the cheese lady, the baker, the tortilla guy and of course the Racilla lady. Oh and don’t forget the local dentist….
A few blocks away was the bakery
After the sweets from the bakery, you can follow the sign to the dentists office!
Now for the Turf
Without question, the finest steakhouse in Puerto Vallarta is Sonora Grill Prime. USDA Prime beef is offered for the discerning carnivore (ME) in a very upscale environment with waiters and management that know the menu inside and out and will take care of any needs. Not to be missed.
Ribeye, grilled onions, baked potato, creamed spinach and assortment of salsas
If you’re on a budget, Pepe’s Tacos has recently opened in The Marina, behind Sonora Grill, for probably what are consistently the best tacos in Vallarta. The original downtown location remains. The Marina location has added items on the menu and the restaurant looks fancier than downtown, but the prices are the same. Don’t forget: corn tortillas, not flour!!
It’s a treat to dine at “old school” restaurants in any city, but New York City just has that something special thing you don’t find in a lot of cities. Old School means just that; a place that has been in existence since 1908! One of those places is John’s of 12th Street.
I decided to order two items that were featured on TV; Veal Meatballs and Tuscan Ragu served over homemade Pappardelle, both of which were exquisite to say the least. Hearty veal meatballs in a red sauce and the perfectly cooked Pappardelle with the very rich Ragu!
Served with bread and good red wine, you can’t go wrong….and top it all off with real New York Cheescake. Excellent waiters, bartender and owners made for a great meal. I’m happy!