Playa del Carmen has shed its last entry, having joined the mad scramble for overpriced mediocrity, in much the same way Antigua did some time ago.
1. Bangcook, San Cristóbal de las Casas
As I think I’ve mentioned before, this place could open up in London’s Soho tomorrow and would soon have a largish queue outside every lunchtime. The Mexicans seem to do upmarket Asian ‘streetfood’ especially well, though why this one landed here of all places is anyone’s guess.
2. Oliva Enoteca, Mérida
Part of a family of 'Oliva' restaurants in the capital of Yucatán, this is the best of the bunch. A truly stylish blend of Mexican and Italian cuisine. The 'industrial chic' interior that their website righty boasts of makes for a great wine bar as well.
3. Rumfish & Vino, Placencia
Another gastro-bar, this one in the heart of Belize's preeminent mainland beach community. A previous winner of the Belize Tourism Board's Restaurant of the Year award. The menu is interesting, the grub generally excellent. Patrons tend to look as if they have been kitted out by Tommy Hilfiger, having just parked their yacht outside.
4. La Esquina de Buenos Aires, San José
There’s no shortage of so-so surrogates for the keyed-up Porteño carnivore experience in these parts - think Antigua’s own NiFu NiFa etc. - but none comes as close to authenticity as this restaurant in Chepe. It really does feel like a little corner of Buenos Aires.
5. La Playita, Bacalar
In a superb location beside the 7-coloured laguna (which works equally well, though differently, as a venue for either lunch or dinner, indoors or outside), La Playita specialises in high quality finger-food, but the menu stretches to more ambitious 'Latin Fusion' dishes.
The next five to follow soon...