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Hello fellow foodies!
We just spent an awesome couple of days in the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico and we LOVED the food. We are a couple travelling for 6 months in Latin America and we share our adventures.
The place that stood out to us most in Yucatan in terms of food was Merida, the capital of the province. A larger city with about 1M inhabitants. Some of the local specialties include:
- Conchinita Pibil: Pork marinated in a citrus sauce which is then slowly cooked underground.
- Relleno Negro: A stew that is really dark black. The stew is made of chargrilled chillies and lots of other spices, usually with turkey or chicken. It's not really spicy although it contains a lot chilly.
- Queso Relleno: This is a hollowed out ball of Edam cheese, which is then filled with meat and spices. The dish is then baked until the cheese is really melty and gooey.
- Sopa De Lima: A rich chicken or turkey broth with a lot of local lime (which is not really sour) added into it, together with strips of chicken and strips of fried taco.
We visited a lot of places and our favourite restaurants were:
- Manjar Blanco, a smaller restaurant, which comes highly recommended by locals, a top chef we spoke to, as well as international food bloggers. It features a menu with pretty much only local Yucatecan food. Our favourite dishes here were the Sopa De Lima and the Conchinita Pibil. This was our favourite restaurant. The dishes had some slight variations to the standard dishes, while still remaining authentic. Service was very good as well.
- Wayan'e, arguably the best taco place in Yucatan. It has 30-40 different kinds of tacos (and other varities as well) to choose from, with a lot of local specialties as well like poc chuc and conchinita pibil. They are reallyyyyy delicious. Our favourite was the Pavo de la reina (Chicken stew).
- Chaya Maya, a well-known place that is in pretty much every guidebook. There is a good mix of locals as well as tourists here. Chaya Maya focuses on authentic Yucatecan food. We really loved the atmosphere at their second location where you can sit outside in a tranquil environment (the original location is a bit loud). They offer loads of different dishes to try, even some lesser-known ones. We went here a couple of times (the lime drink with Chaya - Local spinach- is really good). We highly recommend the tasting platter of the four different local specialties: Queso Relleno (the best we had in Merida), Relleno Negro, Pavo de Pivian (Turkey in pumpkin seed sauce) and Conchinita Pibil. A bargain at 10 EUR/12 USD for two people.
We also made a video about our eating adventure, which features the above restaurants and dishes. Check it out if you want some more info.