Browsing: Isla Mujeres

La Lomita’s Over the Years-Isla Mujeres

February16

 

La Lomita’s was the very first restaurant we visited on our first trip to Isla Mujeres in Feb 2005.  We landed at noon and decided to pick up some groceries and grab lunch before we took a cab to Punta Sur and our Villa.  We picked up our necessities at Mirtita’s and as we got out Laura’s map to get our bearings, we looked up and saw La Lomita’s.  Wow-what a great place to start our multi-year love affair with Isla and its food.  We spoke to the next table that were salivating over the Chiles Relleno.  We opted instead for papa fritos (french fries from just cut potatoes) which provided my first taste of a squeeze of lime instead of our accustomed vinegar.  We also shared shrimp with garlic and polo frito (fried chicken) with “pink” rice and fuchsia coloured onions. 

We could not get the idea of trying the Chiles Relleno out of our heads and tried to go back on the Sunday of our first week.  We found out and have remembered since, that La Lomita’s is not open on Sundays.  But we went back a third time for our last meal of that first trip and discovered that the Ophelia’s Chiles Relleno were definitely worth waiting for.  The whole poblano chile gets hotter towards the stem.  They are stuffed with a creamy white Mexican cheese, breaded and deep fried and then served on a bed of homemade tomato sauce and topped with cream and a “feta” style cheese. 

We returned for Chiles again in February 2006 when we had a bit of a food “accident”.  One member of our party thought that the green sauce on the table was guacamole and she took a sizable scoop on her taco chip.  It was so fiery that she could hardly speak and it took a good ten minutes before our concern for her subsided. 

When I took my husband to Isla for the first time in January 2007, he was anxious to try the Chiles as well.  There are some situations in life that I find particularly unique-we were waiting for an authentic Isla meal while watching Rachel Ray in Rome on “$40 a Day” which had been overdubbed in Spanish.  The world is a very small place. 

My husband loved the bean soup but saved me from future dismay by not consuming the entire bowl.  Our intention that night was to go out for coconut ice cream but even though we had split the meal, we were too full!  Supper was $14 for two of us including beer.  

We were excited to introduce our kids to the restaurant when we took them there in December 2007.  That experience though was “difficult”.  We were a large group and had all ordered beer when we arrived.  We could see that each time the table next to us finished their beer, the glass was cleared, washed and then delivered with beer to us.  Unfortunately they got the glasses first and we were almost finished eating dinner before we all got ours.  When in Mexico-you just have to relax and do things the Mexican way.  The food was fabulous as usual, so I was content.

I’ve seen mixed reviews on La Lomita’s on the message boards lately.  I hope that all is well for this family.  See you soon Isla. 

Kath’s quote:  “In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is strength, in water there is bacteria.”-David Auerbach

Isla Mujeres-Tiende by the Paper Mache Store

February2

I have 22 more sleeps before my winter get-away and I am in “eager anticipation” mode.  I am yearning for warmth (it was -43 here yesterday), for the sand between my toes, to wear flip flops and pareos all day long, to walk by the water, to travel with my beloved entourage and to see all my Isla friends again.  But truth be told-I can’t stop thinking about the food!  Lime wedges to squeeze over everything, creamy “just-made” guacamole, salsa that tastes so fresh- it dances in your mouth, ceviche and fresh fish, fish and more fish.

I am not an “all-inclusive” kinda girl.  For me, part of the pleasure of a meal-is the hunt to obtain it.  I won’t even be able to direct you to my favourite little “fast food” tiende on Isla Mujeres because I do not think that it has a name and I didn’t even get to check to make sure that it was still there on my last visit.  But right now I have this insatiable craving for their fish tacos!

The person ahead of me ordered a fruit platter and so the process began to peel each of his fruit requests, then pull up a chair to sit while lovingly slice each one and then assemble them on the plastic plate-and voila (20 minutes later) a feast for the eyes and the taste-buds.

My tacos could not be started until the fruit plate preparations were completed and cleaned away.  Worth the wait? OMGoodness-yes. Fresh….perfectly cooked…crunchy toppings…messy….and cheap!  Less than $5 for a feast that I took down to the beach to share with my gang.

Kath’s quote: “Ruling a large kingdom, is like cooking a small fish.” (Handle gently and never overdo it)-Lao-tse, Chinese philosopher (6th century BC)

it is well, it is well with my soul

Lorena’s-Isla Mujeres

January12

If D and I were ever to open a restaurant together it would resemble the concept of Lorena’s on Isla Mujeres and Le Beaujena’s in Winnipeg.  We would choose a relaxed atmosphere where the diners would feel as if they had been invited into our home.   

Such it is a Lorena’s in Colonia on Isla Mujeres.  The front of her home is a bakery and food shop and the back has guest rooms.

This is her kitchen

She typically sets up her communal table in the garden but on this night it was too windy to dine outside so we assembled in the storefront.  There are a limited number of entrees to choose from and the rest of the courses are decided by the host.   This is different from Le Beaujena’s in Winnipeg where all the items are pre-determined for the month.  On this particular evening we dined on a cured meat appetizer and then goat cheese salad. I choose a seafood casserole as my main course.

I recall that Lorena sets her table for approximately 16 and our entourage took up half of the space but it was lovely to meet other Islaholics who were at the square table configuration as well. Lorena invites you to bring your own wine which the staff is happy to pour for you.

We finished with ice cream and chocolate mousse for dessert.  By this time, the breeze had died down and it was a beautiful night for stroll, so Melinda and I meandered back to our little apartment on the ocean.  It was a lovely way to work off the calories. 

Kath’s quote:  “Being set at the table, scratch not thyself, and take thou heed as much as thou canst not to spit, cough and blow at thy nose; but if it be needful, do it dexterously, without much noise, turning thy face sidelong.”
Francis Hawkins

somebody wants to talk to you

Bally Hoo-Isla Mujeres

December16

 

If freshness is measured by distance to the original product, our favourite fish and chip spot on Isla Mujeres has the freshest food that you will ever eat.    To enter, one must walk across a dock to a platform on the water.  If your dining table is on the west edge of the restaurant, you can watch the filleting process take place.  If fishermen and women pick Bally Hoo as a favourite dining spot-how could the fish not be the best? 

We have enjoyed Bally Hoo many times since our first visit in 2006.  One New Year’s we sat and enjoyed their killer mango margaritas  as we waited for family to return from a tour on the mainland; another year we met half of our gang arriving on Isla and shared lunch even before their suitcases were put away.  One year to celebrate D’s birthday, we made Bally Hoo a stop on a progressive dinner. 

The fish tacos and fish and chips are always made to order and carefully prepared for just the right combination of crispy batter and tender, piping hot fish inside.

The restaurant is perfectly located to catch the breeze off the water or to enjoy the sunset.  The sign over the open kitchen reads “Slow Food”-why would I want to rush?  I am in paradise.

Kath’s quote: “Fish should smell like the ocean. If they smell like fish, it’s too late.”-Unknown

love your neighbours as yourself

Poc Chuc-Isla Mujeres

November23

Even though I have been to Isla Mujeres seven times, there are still little places that I have not had an opportunity to try (and this is a tiny island).  I almost always stay in Centro which is the town at the north end of the island where the ferry from Cancun deposits you.   This way you can walk to the beach, for groceries, to restaurants and local shopping in less than 10 minutes.  Poc Chuc is on the corner of a couple of Centro’s main streets and I have walked past it oodles of times.  On the last afternoon of my last trip to Isla, I finally got the opportunity to sample their offerings and was absolutely delighted. 

The decor is a happy collection of Caribbean colours and motifs.  The furniture seemed to have been freshly painted and you could see right into their cozy kitchen.

I ordered the Chicken Mole not having enjoyed it for 15 years since a trip to Cozumel.  Sister #3 says that there are over 40 ingredients in a good mole and my first taste would confirm that.  Cocoa and peppery tastes were prominent in the sauce poured over a tender leg and thigh that was served with rice and tortillas.  All this for 70 pesos or the equivalent of $7 CDN and get this-the cerveza was cheaper than a coke.   Someone else ordered Chilies Relleno and shared tastes with me so I was doubly content. 

Not the Mole

Kath’s quote:  “Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.”-Benjamin Franklin

Don’t worry be happy…..

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