Saturday, June 28, 2014

Let's Eat San Miguel: Savory Bites For Under 100 Pesos - Part III: Restaurants and Liquor

2014 is shaping up to be the year of the cheap eat. So where can you go and the get high-quality classics that still give you the best bang for your buck? Look no further.

In part III of this series, we've listed restaurants that have quality food and drink offerings for under 100 pesos.

Portion sizes are not small at many of the restaurants in San Miguel so some of them qualify because you can split a dish or get a doggy-bag to go and still get fed for half the price.

I know. I'm the Queen of splits. Just take Hotel Sautto's Bacco restaurant as an example where I got three meals out of the Amatriciana which was 85 pesos. Can you make a good meal at home for 28 pesos? I'm not so sure.

No matter what you order, one things is for sure. You’ll never go home hungry...or thirsty!

Buen Apetito!

Hernandez Macias # 87

Lavanda has one of the best breakfasts in San Miguel de Allende. Love their French fries too so don't forget to come for lunch. FYI: their sliders are the best in town.

If you've been putting off drinking green juice in the morning, try this one. I usually don't do green but this is an unlikely combination of good for you and downright delicious. Just 8 pesos extra when you order it with breakfast. Their cucumber water is also yummy.

All entrees come with a glass of juice and selection of artisan breads and jams.

Menu items are all under 100 pesos.

Signature dish: Huevos Rancheros. The eggs look like perfect mounds of Oaxaca cheese.

Also a favorite is the Cazuela which combines thin sliced potatoes, mushrooms, cheese and red sauce over a fried egg topped with bacon and tomatoes.

You know me. It's always about the bacon.

#19 Umaran

My favorites at Berlin are the Hamburger for $95 pesos and the Chocolate Soufflé for $65 pesos. 20 minute wait for the Soufflé but totally worth the wait.

Most other items $$ but I've found a bunch of things on the menu that are big enough to split.

Casa Chiquita Bed and Pizza
Correo 45

Best thin crust pizza in town. Not your typical toppings and always a surprise when your pizza comes to the table.

Margarita Pizza just 95 pesos.

Small size perfect for two.

#10A Ancha de San Antonio

Ecléctica cuisine at this bistro where 88 year old Irish Owner Siobhan and her daughter Chef Joanna turn out splendid, delicious dishes. The best kept secret in town.

I love all the soups especially the Gazpacho. 75 pesos. You might think that 75 pesos is a little pricy for soup but just wait until you see this "meal in a bowl" and taste the quality of the ingredients. It doesn't get any better than this!

Malicha's Grill
Colegio Militar #16, Colonia Guadalupe

Got to love a Chicago dog. This classic comes with the unusual combination of BBQ sauce and asparagus.

Delicious and under 100 pesos.

Nena Calenda Bar
#10 Calle Nueva

The Nena won the San Miguel Margarita contest last year and I was surprised that you can get one for just 70 peso. Actually, this smoking skull gave me almost two full glasses.

Appetizer? They have foie gras. A split for 110 pesos or just 55 pesos each.

El Pegaso
Corregidora 6

Hollandaise Sauce With Lemon? Check.
English Muffin Toasted? Check. (Finally!)
Eggs Cooked To Perfection? Check.
Canadian Bacon? Check.

Yes, this is the most authentic Eggs Benedict around. I know. I've tried them all.

The place is full of Mexican folk art so you can’t help but be in good spirits when you walk in the door and see all of "them" hanging around in the likes of Fridas, Virgins and Skeletons. It will definitely put you in a good mood to eat.

Look for breakfast and other comida items under 100 pesos.

Good rumor has it that they are about to open a rooftop spot.

Superb Mexican pastries by Ma. Guadalupe Lopez.

Don Taco Tequila
Hernandez Macias # 83

This place is known for its unique drinks and the wide variety of great sauces.

Try a Mezcalini - a Mezcal Martini for just 75 pesos or the Serrano Hendricks- a combination of Serrano Peppers and Hendricks Gin.

Delicious salsas to accompany any taco of your choice. Most under 100 pesos.

Really friendly owners and staff.

Hecho en Mexico
Ancho de San Antonio 8

I know so many people who love this restaurant. Why? The high degree of consistency in its food.

Again, there is enough in this appetizer sampler for three to split at just 32 pesos each.

Most items on the menu under 100 pesos.

La Cocina
Pila Seca #1

Watch the girls prepare your food through the kitchen window or better yet sit at the table where they actually do it.

Fixed price breakfast menu for 75 pesos with many choices to pick from.

Ten Ten Pie
# 53 Aldama

So who said you can't have a bowl of Guacamole for dinner? Tasty and still just 50 pesos.

On and off for Margaritas depending on who is making them.

Molcajete? Count me in when four of us split it for just 70 pesos each.

Best place in town for people watching.

Good hamburger and friendly staff.

Lots of items on the menu under 100 pesos.

Yes, they are dog friendly. 

Hotel Matilda- Moxi
Aldama # 53

Moxi is one of my favorite places to eat in San Miguel and I can always invent a special occasion to go there.

High quality, artistically creative dishes made under the direction of Mexico City Chef Enrique Olivera.

Moxi's cheese fries the best. 75 pesos. Sorry. Not sharing this menu item with anyone.

Split: Caprese Salad 110 pesos/55 pesos each.

Breakfast? Yogurt, fruit and granola for just 55 pesos. And who said hotel restaurant dining is expensive? This is one of the least expensive breakfasts I've had in San Miguel and also one of the best.

In fact, what price do you put on a breakfast with a pool view?

And doesn't it always taste better served on china instead of paper or plastic?

Santos Crudoteca
Callejon de Los Suspiros 7

Little bar with a great vibe, cheap eats and ice cold brews to wash it all down.

Bar food:

Canadian Poutine 65 pesos
Onion rings 50 pesos
Sweet Potato fries 40 pesos

Santos Crudoteca is tucked away in a little alley so no one will find you here if you were to disappear for an entire afternoon to enjoy a brew and watch the World Cup.

Posada Corazon
Aldama # 9

Afternoon tea from 3:30-6:30 PM. 75 peso.

Special tea with 5 kinds of herbs and raw honey.

Nice, quiet grounds. A good place to meet old friends or nurse a nasty summer cold.

La Sirena Gorda
Barranca and Huertas

Oldest cantina in San Miguel.

Signature dish: Ceviches.

60 peso Ginger Margarita the best in town. Many menu items under 100 pesos.

Split: the pork leg for 90 pesos each. I couldn't possibly eat a whole one...or could I?

El Meson Hotel Martinez Bar
# 80 Mesones

So who said you had to go to Napa or Sonoma to get great wine? A cozy Mexican wine bar with only Valle de Guadalupe wines and a great selection of Martinis and other drinks.

Signature Drink:Chili Martini. 100 pesos.

Three choices for a nice atmosphere in their center courtyard, at couches out by the pool or in the wine cellar.

Great place to go for a cocktail before the theater.

La Casa de Diezmo
Jesus 36

International Food and traditional Yucateca. A little on the pricy side compared to other breakfast restaurants around town but garden atmosphere here is superb.

Egg dishes pushing 90-100 pesos. Salads 110-160 pesos so you'll want to split.

French toast 80 pesos and Hot Cakes 75.

Cafe Media Naranja
Hidalgo 83

This little cafe is well worth the walk upstairs for fresh juices, smoothies and healthy salads.

All under 100 pesos.

La Mezcaleria
Correo # 47

Heavenly Mezcal Margaritas. There is so much to be said for using only but the best quality ingredients. 70 pesos each.

Small Tapas menu includes delicious, homemade sausages- both red and white- made from 50% beef, 25% pork and 25% bacon.100 pesos each.

Split the Clams or Tuna Tartar for 120 pesos and you have a wonderful 60 peso tapa.

Camino Silvestre Casa and Nectar Casa de Te
Correo # 43

In peaceful, garden surroundings, this place has beautiful gifts but sorry, not many on this 100 peso budget.

What is? Great teas and Ambrosia Ice Creams including my favorite Chai. Just 60 pesos.

San Augustín Chocolates and Churros
San Francisco 21

The window seat is the place to nab in this little restaurant that has something on the menu worth the order: Chocolate and Churros.

Churros are good but better if they were served hot. Just ask them. They are really accommodating.

Tiny colored marshmallows fill the glass as a compliment to the hot chocolate.

Great treat on a cold San Miguel morning...or even a warm one. One thing for sure. Hot chocolate is good just about any time.

A little $$ but both kids and adults love this place. Under 100 pesos.

La Azotea
Umarán # 6

Their Jicama taco is the best taco in town for just 45 pesos. I order mine with the fried shrimp but it also comes with tuna or tofu. A thin slice of Jicama is the taco shell which gives it the most unusual flavor.

Gorgeous rooftop where Tapas make the perfect dinner to share like this tuna on a thick-cut potato chip with a balsamic vinegar.

Under 100 pesos. Really friendly staff.

Orquidea Comida Thai
New Location: Zacateros 83

Just moved to a new location to showcase their Thai food made with fresh, organic ingredients.

Signature dish: Pad Thai.

This place also serves one of the best (that was after I added an entire glass of lime juice) and strongest Margaritas around.

Andranza Sierra Nevada
Hospicio # 35

Fresh, quality ingredients make up a varied menu and desserts are worth over-eating for.

The pancakes with Cajeta butter are a breakfast deal at $77 pesos.

Yes, it's a little pricy but you can make it work. Many good splits on the menu will put you at 100 pesos.

Salida a Celaya 52

If you're dying for a good, American-style breakfast, this is as Americano as it gets.

It's a fact: I LOVE their bacon. It's officially called cottage bacon in the states and literally has no fat. Pleased to see that I had an extra generous portion on my plate.

Everything on the menu between 50 and 100 pesos.

Cuadrante # 34

Not Devon Street in Chicago but still good food if you're looking for an Indian fix.

Signature dish: Chicken Tikka. 75 Pesos.

Zacateros #73

Wonderful Lebanese food and very reasonably priced.

2 for 1 wine most days.

The best Hummus... and I don't even like hummus.

Most specialties under 100 pesos.

The Restaurant
Sollano 16

Think The Restaurant's expensive? Think again. There are a number of drinks you can order for under 50 pesos.

My choice was this authentic Mexican Michelada made with Victoria beer, a perfect pale lager to compliment its spicy taste. Only 40 pesos and after just one I was feeling the effects. I went into a dive this past week where the Michelada's were 45 pesos and they were served in a Styrofoam cup. Which would you rather have?

Food? The Pork belly and duck appetizer is 100 pesos as well as the delicious Pot Stickers.

The Ribs are really good as is the carnita salad. A split gets you one healthy portion for just 58 pesos.

Dessert? What else but the best in town. 90 pesos for my favorite caramel sundae and just 80 pesos for the Panna cotta.

La Antigua Villa Santa Mónica
Fray Jose Guadalupe Mojica # 22

Go to see the beautiful grounds, the peacocks or sit in front of the fireplace on a cold night and sip wine.

Quesidallas,soups and breakfast items all under 100 pesos.

Canal # 34

Worth a split: the Caprese salad for 115 pesos.

Delicious pizzas on the pricy side but still within your budget if you split.

Hidalgo #12

To get your Cajun fix: a cup of Gumbo for just 82 pesos.

The 1/2 soft shell crab and onion rings for just 115 pesos or 58 pesos for the split. I'm a sucker for this dish at least a couple times a month.

Cafe Buenos Dias
Callejon de Pueblito 3A

I've heard they have good food but I simply can't get beyond the coffee. It's the best in town.

1826 Restaurant at the Rosewood Hotel
Calle Nemesio Diez #11

Argula Roasted Beetroot and Date Salad is Caramelized pumpkin seeds, rocket lettuce, marinated cherry tomatoes, fine herbs vinaigrette, Granny Smith Ice Cream, and Medjol dates. At 170 pesos this is the best split you'll have. Yes, favorite salad ever. Dinner only.

Another great split at lunch is the Crispy Red Snapper Tacos for 190 pesos. Enough food for two...even if you’re hungry.

Luna at the Rosewood Hotel
Calle Nemesio Diez #11

Two months into their new menu and the Rosewood has made their choices more affordable...not to mention they are also really good.

You can split a pizza and get a beer for $100 pesos.

The view? The best in town.

Calzada de La Aurora #12

Just over 100 peso weekend specials are a great buy and big enough to split.

Unquestionably one of the best pieces of beef I’ve had since I've been in San Miguel.

Delicious Caprese salad and don't forget the finisher: the chocolate pie.

Love those 2 for 1 Margaritas after 5 PM. Warning: Very strong and really delicious. The second one will get you singing.

Hotel Sautto's Bacco
Hernández Macías 59

The bartender's family has owned this property for over 300 years. He's a lawyer and happens to mix the best Margarita in town. 60 pesos. The surprise is that they use some of the least expensive and oldest (1879) made tequila around - Orendain Tequila Blanco.

Southern Italian Delicious: Amatriciana is made with fresh tomatoes, smoked pancetta, garlic, onion and basil. 85 pesos.


Ancha de San Antonio #22

They have expanded to both Queteraro and Celaya and are now planning to open up a restaurant in their back space. Guarantee it will be first-class just like the store.

They have many wines under 100 pesos.

Split a bottle of Jaral de Berrio Mezcal for 200 pesos. Made in Guanajuato.

They carry Rancho Diez y Siete meat from Sonora. You can get hamburger meat for 99 pesos a kilo or split a Diezmillo 179 pesos.

Buy salt for your next Mezcal indulgence with worms or grasshoppers for just 19 pesos a tube.

La Europa
Canal #13

Antares Chardonnay from Chile just 58 pesos.

I can't believe I really love such an inexpensive wine.

Cava Sautto
Hernández Macías #59

Friends have turned me on to XA Vinos DOMECQ Blanc de Blancs (White) and the L.A Cetto Petit Shiraz (Red). Both are under 100 pesos a bottle and delicious.

Have fun exploring the wine collection upstairs.

Go-to Spanish Champagne as a split for under 75 pesos each.