Culinary Exploration with Meals with Mark in Puerto Vallarta Mexico Part 2

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Hello!  Welcome back to my Culinary Exploration in Puerto Vallarta!  Day #3, surprisingly I didn’t wake up with a hangover after all the Tequila shots and Margaritas.  Since no hangover, we got up early to start our day!

Breakfast today took us back to the restaurant we wanted to try the first day in town.  Since we got an earlier start, there was no line! YAY!  So, for breakfast, we ate at Café De Olla.  We started with Coffee.  The waiter asked if we wanted Mexican coffee!  Since we were in Mexico, we both said “Yes”.  We both were surprisingly not happy with the coffee.  It had a strong cinnamon taste and we both agreed not the best coffee we have had.

We started off with two appetizers.  We started off with the stuffed sweet bread and also the stuffed baked potato.

First off being Cape Verdean, I have eaten my share of sweet bread back in the day.  I haven’t had it in quite some time.  But let me just tell you the Mexican’s version of sweet bread which is stuffed with a sweet cream cheese mixture inside and came out warm, would blow your mind!  It was probably the best sweet bread I have ever had.  The cream cheese mixture inside made the difference since I am a huge fan of cheese and for the fact, it came out warm gave it bonus points. It was perfectly sweet and delicious.

The potato was interesting.  They made it right out in the street in front of the restaurant.  The cook hollows out the potatoes in mass quantities.  Cooks and mashes the insides of the potatoes and adds seasonings and re-stuffs the shells.  Then they are baked in a brick oven.  It was definitely unique and tasty.  My partner even liked it and he is not a huge fan of potatoes due to the carbs.  But it was definitely a different way to make and serve potatoes.  It wasn’t overly seasoned but it was baked to perfection.  I wouldn’t choose it for a breakfast starter, but more of a lunch or dinner app as it is heavy.  We tried it due to the vast array of restaurants we wanted to try in the area.

For the main course, we both ordered the Chilaquiles, a traditional Mexican breakfast dish.  My partner got them with sunny side eggs and I had mine with scrambled.  For those of you who do not know or never had Chilaquiles, they’re tortilla chips (here at Cafe’ de Olla, they are thin strips) which are tossed in a red sauce topped with cheese and typically eggs (any style you prefer), or here you can also top it with chicken.  We left the chicken out.

This is the best Chilaquiles I have ever had!  It came loaded with Lots of crema and frijoles.  The Chilaquiles and the eggs were cooked perfectly and were very filling.  We were definitely nice and full for a day relaxing and reading on the beach. The decor is fun and festive and it’s close to everything. the food was fresh and served immediately.  No complaints about the service.  We did, however, notice an ongoing theme, no credit just cash.  With the coffee, this is the only other negative.  However, the price conversion was great.   I would give overall a 7 out of 10.

We spend the day at the beach.  We walked on the beach to discover other nearby beaches or lack thereof.  The beaches left a lot to be desired.  But, we were in paradise and we were here to relax.  So that we did.

We spend the day on the beach reading and since we were full on the breakfast most of the day, we decided to have a light snack from the hotel’s beach club called the Mantamar.  We ordered two light beers and the Guacamole.

Again, no disappointment here with the Guacamole.  The entire trip so far, we have not had any bad Guacamole.  The avocados were extremely fresh (probably because they got them from Mexico) and the guac was bursting with the right amount of flavor and spice.

After the beach and a dip in the Jacuzzi, we headed up to our room to freshen up and hit the town.

We stopped at Apache.  A local gay bar in Zona Romantica.  It was a charming little neighborhood bar.  We both got a Margarita. It was a 2 for 1 happy hour, so you know we were happy, lol.  We sat in a quiet little table and took in the gayborhood and enjoyed each other’s company.  For the second drink for our 2 for 1 we moved to the bar area.  We met the owner and the bartender.  They were both extremely friendly and welcoming.  The bartender told us of her favorite local authentic restaurant and made her recommendations on what to order.  It sounded too good and what we wanted the entire trip, authentic food.

We took our bartender’s advice and our culinary exploration took us to El Campanario.  It was a quaint little Mexican Restaurant in the middle of a residential area in PV.  We were the only non-locals in the restaurant.  The ambiance and the décor were exactly what I wanted and expected from my trip to Mexico.  This restaurant was more of a Tapas style setting.  Again, it was cash only, but again the conversion rate was ridiculous and we ate so much food for cheap.

We ordered and shared a bunch of things from the menu.  We started with the Flautas (deep fried rolled up corn tortilla filled with beef and was topped with a mild sauce, lettuce, tomatoes, and sour cream), they were crispy and cooked to perfection.  We also had the crispy tacos which were deep fried with chicken, cabbage, tomato sauces, and cheese.  It was probably one of the best tacos I have ever had.  The taste was pure authentic Mexican.

It doesn’t get more perfect than that.  We didn’t stop there we also had the Sopas which were deep fried thick small tortillas with beans and cheese topped with similar toppings as the rest.  Seems like all the dishes came with similar toppings.  I am not complaining, they were all delicious.  We pretty much tried almost everything on the simple but tasty menu.  We ordered a second round since they were small portions, but after a bit, everything started tasting the same, but all so good.

The only cons again it was cash only, and no healthy options on the menu.  95% of menu everything was deep fried.  We finished off the meal with a traditional Mexican drink called Atole.  It’s a hot drink made with cornmeal and milk which is flavored with vanilla & cinnamon.  It was the perfect nightcap on this meal.  It was the right amount of sweetness and had a unique taste.  It was the mid-60s outside, so It was a perfect addition to our meal.  I give this place an 8 overall. Great service, great food, and great ambiance.  Again, if you plan to eat a lot, you can skip the Atole, its pretty heavy.

After dinner to burn off some of what we ate we walked around town and took in the culture of Mexico the Puerto Vallarta has to offer.  We walked thru a nighttime street fair and watched some of the local street performers.

To end the night we did some bar hopping in Zona Romantica!  Sipping on some light beers and listening to some amazing music, an end to a perfect evening!

 

Look for part 3 of my Puerto Vallarta experience coming soon!

If you missed part one you can check it out here:

Culinary Exploration with Meals with Mark in Puerto Vallarta Mexico Part 1

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