Entertainment | Restaurants & Dining | October 2008
|An Oasis in Downtown Puerto Vallarta|
Gary R. Beck - PVNN
Restaurant Mestizo is an oasis in downtown Puerto Vallarta; a garden that embraces the spirit of an old town house, and the delicious flavors of an unaffected Mexican menu in an atmosphere created with love and attention to detail.
|Open from 6-11 pm Monday through Saturday, Mestizo is located at Abasolo #233 between Calles Juárez and Guadalupe Sánchez in downtown Puerto Vallarta. For more information, visit MestizoVallarta.com.|
In a remodeled old casa with a lovely garden patio and terrace area and an inside dining room, the cuisine at River Cafe's sister restaurant produces wonderful Mestizo [mixed backgrounds] dishes. Soft romantic lighting showcases artwork including paintings by local artist Marta Gilbert.
Owner Margarito Larios' and Chef Karla Morales Bermúdez' menu offers stunning choices, but when we visited last May during Vallarta Restaurant Week, we opted for a selection to taste.
There was delight in finding a Beet Salad and this plate was complemented by green beans and chipotle goat cheese croutons. It was a bit spicy and slightly sweet. Chipotle was also the flavoring of the Shrimp Bisque, creamy and rich. Tomato, Basil and Garlic Bruschetta was tasty and crisp.
My companion insisted on the Roasted Duck, a glazed whole breast, sauced with a Mexican Chimichurri. The entrée was accompanied by wild rice and a vegetable tamale made of masa, mixed vegetables, garlic and guajillo chile. The meat was moist, tender and very easy to cut.
Sweet Picadillo Ravioli were stuffed with ground beef, pork, almond and pear. Such an unusual combination was topped with a pecan-chipotle sauce. Accents of rich fruit and nuts were delightful and complimentary. Also sampled was the Mahi Mahi finished with cilantro and poblano chile sauce. Smooth and succulent, the fish and flavorings blended beautifully.
An elaborate Flambé prepared table side would have been a bit better if the strawberries and mango were ripe. They were prepared in orange juice, lime and cinnamon with a scoop of passion fruit ice cream along side.
The Caramel and Tequila Creme Brulée was appropriately crusty on top with a sweet filling. Fresh fruit was served to one side. The evening brought cooling air into the garden and we ventured outside with wide smiles on our faces and a vow to return very soon.
Open from 6-11 pm Monday through Saturday, Mestizo is located at Abasolo #233 between Calles Juárez and Guadalupe Sánchez in downtown Puerto Vallarta. For more information, visit MestizoVallarta.com. For reservations, call (322) 222-1333.
After 20 years in the San Francisco restaurant business, Gary R. Beck turned his attentions to cooking, dining out, creating recipes and exploring Puerto Vallarta's rich array of eateries. Famous for his restaurant guide, available online at CafePress.com or Lulu.com, Gary also writes restaurant reviews for Puerto Vallarta newspapers, Bay Area magazines, and now, a feature column for BanderasNews.com. Contact Gary at garyrbeck1(at)yahoo.com.
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