5 Foods You Have To Try On Your Next Trip To Vallarta

Your heading to Mexico so we will assume that street tacos and Tequila are on your list of things to do, but you might be wondering what other foods you should try while you are here? Below is a list of 5 regional and classic Mexican foods that even if you’ve had outside of Mexico—you must try in Puerto Vallarta!

Seafood Restaurants In Pitillal

Ceviche

If raw fish isn’t your thing we urge you to have at least one bite of a freshly caught ceviche. Marinated in each restaurants signature blend you simply can’t go wrong. An excellent option for first timers is to head to our food tour partner Joe Jack’s Fish Shack for their ceviche sampler. They serve traditional regional Corvina bass, shrimp aguachile, shrimp and octopus, and tuna poke. If not, ceviche give fresh shucked oysters or clams a try.

5 Foods You Have To Try On Your Next Trip To Vallarta-Birria

Birria

Other than tortilla soup, soups and stews might not really come to mind when you think of Mexican food—but you must try at least one or two while you’re here. What I love is that Mexican soups are so different than soup back home giving you a whole new culinary experience. One of the regional specialties is birria, which is a spicy meat stew made with goat, lamb, or sometimes beef. What makes this slow-braised stew so special is each restaurant’s signature spice blend. Like most Mexican soup, it can be topped with onions, cilantro, and lime juice. While common as a stew our food tour partner Robles Birria Tacos serves it in delicious tacos. A must-visit taco stand you may not have found on your own.

5 Foods You Have To Try On Your Next Trip To Vallarta-Mole

Mole

You may have had mole before but if you have never tried it in Mexico then it must be at the top of your list. Mole can be served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Every restaurant has a family recipe that has been passed down through the generations with some containing upward of 100 ingredients. While similar each recipe is unique so it’s worth trying a couple of different restaurants.

5 Foods You Have To Try On Your Next Trip To Vallarta-Corn

Corn Many Different Ways

You’ve certainly had corn many times before but there are a few corn dishes you must try while in Vallarta. Corn tortillas will be served with your tacos but give the corn dishes below a try too.

Huitlacoche: this is a delicacy sometimes referred to as corn mushrooms or the Mexican truffle. It is a fungus that grows on corn, which is often turned into an enchilada sauce or soup you will be daydreaming about. Don’t think fungus sounds good? Trust me. Besides we eat cheese and mushroom without second thought.

Pozole: a simple but delicious corn hominy soup made with chicken or pork. Clear pozole is not spicy, red pozole has a bit of kick. Top with lettuce, radishes, lime juice, onion, and cilantro.

Corn On The Cob: you must try a fresh grilled corn on the cob while you are here, seasoned with lime and salt. If not corn on the cob give elotes a try—which is fresh grilled corn with crema (a Mexican sour cream) and cotija a crumbly cheese. It is then topped with your choice in spices—lime juice, salt, and a spice blend. Both will be found by street vendors.

Atole: this hot corn beverage is often served during festivals to celebrate. Made by toasting masa and adding cinnamon, vanilla, and local fruit juice like coconut or pineapple. It’s more of a dessert than a beverage.

5 Foods You Have To Try On Your Next Trip To Vallarta-Mexican Coffee5 Foods You Have To Try On Your Next Trip To Vallarta-Jamaica Agua Fresca

To Drink

There is a long list of drinks to choose from both alcoholic and non-alcoholic. Here are just a few to prioritize:

Non-Alcoholic:

Agua Fresca: a fresh fruit-infused water with Jamaica (hibiscus flowers) being a favorite.

Coconut water: fresh right out of the coconut.

Limonada: fresh lime juice with a local sparkling mineral water. Can also be made with orange juice as a naranjada.

Coffee: if you are a coffee lover skip Starbucks and head to the local coffee shops, most of which sell the beans they brew.

Alcoholic:

Tequila: a tequila tasting is a must, preferably one that includes the difference between Tequila, Mezcal and Raicilla. Or head to the town of Tequila which is only about 4 hours away.

Margaritas: if straight tequila is not your thing do a margarita instead. Since you’re on vacation upgrade to a top-shelf tequila.

Micheladas: a spicy beer-like Bloody Mary often topped with shrimp, carrots, and jimica.

One of the easiest ways to try most of the food on this list is to book a 3-hour tour with Vallarta Food Tours. Book on the first day or two of your trip so that you can head back to the restaurants you enjoyed most.

Our 7 Favorite Breakfast Spots in Puerto Vallarta

We don’t mean to nag but…we all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Agreed? But seriously, how many of us overlook this, opting for a quick bite before we shuttle about our day. Here in Puerto Vallarta, with so many amazing breakfast options, there is not excuse to skip breakfast. So put away the excuses and take out the fork and knife.

Here are our favorite breakfast spots, ranging from cute, local neighborhood coffee shops to more formal restaurants.

Coco’s KitchenPulpito 122, Old Town.  Set in a gorgeous, lush garden, Coco’s Kitchen is a long-time Vallarta staple and for good reason. With a perfectly crafted breakfast/brunch menu, Coco’s delights with an exquisite chile relleno omelet, decadent churro pancakes and savory huevos rancheros.  Go crazy, wash down this deliciousness with one of their great mimosas.

Savory omelettes at Coco's Kitchen.

Savory omelettes at Coco’s Kitchen.

La PalapaPulpito 105-3, Old Town. La Palapa is one of the oldest restaurants in Puerto Vallarta. Once you step inside, it is easy to understand its longevity. Warm and inviting yet majestic in its allure, La Palapa sits on one of the most enviable beaches in Puerto Vallarta – Los Muertos Beach.  You will fawn for days over La Palapa’s soft shell crab eggs Benedict with a chipotle hollandaise and the green or red chilaquiles topped with Oaxaca cheese. Provecho!

Fredy’s TucanBasilio Badillo 245, Old Town.  All you need to know is that during high season, you will find a good amount of people milling around outside of this Vallarta institution.  What is the draw?  To start out with, variety.  Fredy’s Tucan offer more than 70 dishes – literally something for everyone. For a traditional Mexican breakfast, try their “campesino” –  arrachera accompanied with chilaquiles and beans.  Breakfast of champions!

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Enchanting view at Hacienda San Angel

Hacienda San Angel Miramar 336, Centro.  With one of the most awe-inspiring views in the city, Hacienda San Angel takes Sunday Brunch to a new level – literally and figuratively.  Perched above the city’s central church, Hacienda San Angel offers up an incredible brunch complete with prime rib, shrimp cocktail, made-to-order omelets, waffles and crepes, a wide array of salads, cheeses, desserts and lots more. A strolling violinist and the stunning view set the stage for an unforgettable Sunday in beautiful Puerto Vallarta.

A Page in the SunLazaro Cardenas 179, Old Town.  More than twenty years ago, two sisters, Gaby and Lindsey opened a small coffee shop, armed with a dream and their love of books.  A single rotating bookshelf and a tiny space, morphed into a much larger space lined with books and one of Vallarta’s favorite meeting spots. A Page in the Sun’s delicious organic coffee is grown in the Sierra Madre mountains and roasted by them into four varieties to enjoy along with great breakfast sandwiches and bagels!

Fall in love with Page in the Sun’s organic coffee!

Mi CaféFrancisco I. Madero 505, Old Town.  Tucked away in a cute neighborhood, Mi Café is a hidden gem.  A friendly, bilingual staff warmly welcome you to this cozy and comfortable café.  The great service sets the table for a memorable breakfast.  Make sure to try the French toast and the avocado omelet.  ¡Que rico!

Summer Blues in Puerto Vallarta

The summer in Puerto Vallarta has us moving slower, trying to duck rain showers and running into the OXXO just for their free AC. Anticipating what is traditionally the slowest month of the year, some business shutter their doors for the month of “Septi-hambre”. However, the savviest of locals understand that braving the summer has its benefits, namely crazy, great deals.  Restaurants looking to fill their seats offer up great discounts and promotions in the summer months. Some are just for the summer and some are year-round. Among our favorites are:

    • Nicksan, in Nuevo Vallarta, with its exquisitely fresh fish, offers sushi-lovers a deal year-round from 2 to 5 daily.  During these hours, for $250 pesos, you get a chef’s choice 5-course meal with cocktails while you are being served. It is AMAZING!
    • Just upstairs from Nicksan at the Marival Residences, Insu boasts an incredible Sky Lounge with enviable ocean views.  They also offer up three tapas and three glasses of wine or beer for $250 pesos. With the gorgeous backdrop of the Bay of Banderas, you will be floored by their delectable global tapas.
    • Los Muertos Brewing Company, the city’s favorite watering hole, offers up ladies ½ off wine bottles and ½ off appetizers on Thursdays.
    • Joe Jack’s Fish Shack, on Basilio Badillo, extends its 2 x 1 mojito special to 7pm daily and all day on Saturday and a special price for burgers on Wednesday.
    • The legendary River Cafe is a serene location along the river in the middle of the city. This summer, The River Cafe presents a 3-course meal for a hard-to-beat $295 pesos.
    • Omaggio, also at the Marival Residences, has a to-die-for Sunday Brunch for just $200 pesos.  This price includes national cocktails.
    • Feeling adventurous? Vallarta Adventures has great specials this summer!
    • Of course, there’s our own Vallarta Food Tour coupon code of 10% off for the summer on all tours. Take the Evening Taco Tour and cool off with a cold Pacífico. Just type in “summerblues” to get your much-deserved discount and get out of the summer blues!

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