Pujol is No. 3 in Latin America
LEE ESTE POST EN ESPAÑOL.
The tortilla is the basis of the Mexican diet, and chef Enrique Olvera is lauded for taking this humble ingredient from the street to spaces reserved for fine dining. Just this week, The World's 50 Best named his restaurant Pujol the third best in the region after Maido and Central in Lima, Peru. Located in Mexico City’s Polanco neighborhood, Pujol is known for combining rustic Mexican flavors that pay tribute to the rich culinary history of Mexico.
Olvera has managed to highlight Mexican flavors by means of a tasting menu of elegant dishes made with ingredients that deserve as much attention as the world’s finest cuisine. Pujol’s signature dish is the Mole Madre, Mole Nuevo, a contemporary version of mole, a sauce typical of Mexican cuisine. Often made with about 30 ingredients, Olvera’s version combines more than 100 and ages them for over a thousand days.
Pujol is located in a mid-century house featuring large windows that welcome natural light, and inside are a wood-burning oven, terrazzo floors and a long bar that offers a tasting menu of tacos made with blue and white corn, and beverage pairings including cocktails, beers, and wine. Keep reading for our run-through of the taco omakase —served with same dynamic as sushi—which has transformed the way the world sees this Mexican staple. pujol.com.mx
The meal begins with botanas, or snacks, which include a spoonful of white corn tofu, a white corn “infladita,” or a puffed and fried tortilla filled with escamoles, or ant larvae, and finally, another of Olvera’s signature dishes, the “elote,” or grilled baby corn with powdered chicatanas (ants), coffee, and costeño chile mayonnaise. Chicatanas are rare flying ants found in Oaxaca that come out during the first rain of the year; they are so difficult to catch that they are considered an expensive delicacy.
2. ‘Tetela’ with black bean and sea urchin
Based on the triangular snack from Oaxaca, this dish combines the unusual flavors of black bean and sea urchin, and is served with a Mexican peanut sauce.
3. Aubergine taco with white corn tortilla, hoja santa and avocado
A vision in green, the Hoja Santa taco features a blue corn tortilla pressed with Hoja Santa, a Mexican herb with anise-like properties. Served with garbanzo and shiso, this simple, vegetarian dish was one of our favorites.
4. Amberjack taco with avocado and seaweed
A soft, blue corn tostada comes served with clean, sweet slices of raw amberjack alternated by sliced avocado, and garnished with algae.
5. Scallop tostada
Featuring a crispy white corn tostada topped with fresh, raw scallops from Ensenada, Baja California, and dressed with an aromatic black sesame oil sauce, the scallop tostada delicately combines powerful flavors and textures.
6. Sea Bass Belly Taco
A pleasing taco made of white corn tortilla, topped with sea bass prepared al pastor, garnished with herbs, and accompanied by yuzu, a Japanese citrus.
7. Mole Madre with hoja santa tortilla
To end the meal, the mole dish features a perfect circle of fresh mole set inside a ring of darker mole that has been aged for more than 1,000 days. It comes with a basket of soft, warm tortillas that serve as delicious vehicles for the sauce.
8. Dessert & Churros
Dessert in Mexico should never go without churros, which are presented at Pujol in a charming coil of light, crunchy pastries dusted with cinnamon and sugar.