La Plaza Restaurant

The Quinta Real in Zacatecas, Mexico is a stunning piece of architecture and one of the most unique hotels in the world. It is situated around a 19th-century bullfighting ring. After the final corrida in 1975, the bullring was restored and the hotel was built into its surrounding grandstand.

Zacatecas is the colonial jewel of Mexico. Its winding streets, narrow callejones and amazing architecture are a photographer’s dream (click here for a slideshow). The Quinta Real captures the essence of the city perfectly.

The plan was, after several hours of museums and sight-seeing, to grab a beer and chill a bit. Upon entering the hotel and seeing the location of its restaurant, it became obvious that a couple of hours were necessary to soak it all in.

La Plaza Restaurant is laid out to emulate the tiered bullring. It allows all the diners to have the same amazing view. Unfortunately, this photo doesn’t quite capture it…

When in Mexico, my beer of choice is Tecate (or Indio, in a pinch). Of course, the best accompaniment for a fine Mexican beer is a fine tequila. Don Julio is a fine tequila.

The sangrita (little blood) matches perfectly with the tequila. They both have a citrus and pepper element. The chile-spiked tomato juice takes a bit of the edge off. Also, its a great appetite inducer!

The amuse bouche is a lightly fried potato cube stuffed with Iberian Ham with a dollop of chipotle aioli. Now that’s impressive! Never had an amuse with lunch before.

This, my friends, is a bread basket. Literally. Fresh rolls, some herbed, others stuffed with cream cheese, crispy sesame sticks served in an intricate bread nest. As with the amuse, the bread is complementary.

The Mexican Snack Trio is actually a foursome. Chile-soaked shrimp and pork, smoky frijole and queso taquitos, a massive amount of very fresh guacamole and the highlight…smoked marlin with pickled onions and peppers. An incredible flavor combination. Not sure if it’s fusion or Mayan.

Quinta Real Zacatecas
Avenida Ignacio Rayon 434
Colonia Centro
Zacatecas, Zacatecas

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