Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Week of Cheap Eats...Without Sacrificing Your Weekend Splurges

A Week of Cheap Eats...Without Sacrificing Your Weekend Splurges

Recently, I did a series of three posts to highlight the places in San Miguel where you can eat for under 100 pesos. There are many of them and the list continues to grow with at least 5 new restaurants opening this past month.

Based on that listing, here is a week of cheap eats that you can enjoy without cutting any of your favorite splurges. You'll get some of the best food in San Miguel.

My indulgences? A Margarita on Friday night after a busy week, a bottle of Chardonnay on Saturday night to share with friends and of course a morning Croissant.

The Weekly Total: $88.23 with tips.

Yes, in some cases you can eat cheaper at home but some people prefer going out and others do not like to cook. It's a matter of personal preference.

You'll notice that Friday and Saturday are the only days that run over $10.00 a day. I like to splurge on the weekends.

With only a little over $10.00 in this budget for liquor and a long list of other options for eating, it's possible to get this total down even lower, especially if you don't drink or opt for something other than a steak on Saturday night. You can also combine eating at home with going out and probably do better on your spending.

Ordering appetizers, alcoholic drinks or desserts is the easiest way to blow a budget and drive up the total on your bill. So what can you do?

Appetizers Are Your Meal
Some restaurants serve large portions of appetizers. You and your partner can order a few and still come in under budget.

Drink at Home
Drinking out is the quickest way to ring up a tab. As I mentioned before, have friends over for an at-home cocktail party before you go out to eat. Or invite them over for an after dinner drink.

Desserts Are A Luxury
If you've got a sweet tooth and really crave a dessert, eat in and go out to enjoy dessert and coffee.

Always Eat A Healthy Breakfast...

This week, make breakfast every day in your own kitchen. I like smoothies because they are easy, healthy and you can switch out the flavor depending on what fruit is in season.

Agave Syrup (The Sweetener) = 69 pesos
Yogurt = 26 pesos
Cranberry Juice  =27 pesos
Strawberries - Leo = 20 pesos

Total $142 pesos = $10.93 (5@ 29 pesos each = $2.23)

Street food: A Mexican Feast of Menudo and To-Die-For-Tacos

10 AM
Doña Bola
Calle Calzada de La Luz and Calle Amado Nervo 1A
Colonia Guadalupe
Menudo = 30 Pesos

Large bowl of Menudo from the only place in San Miguel that brews it for seven hours and for which you can actually smell it cooking as you walk down the block.

After 7 PM
Andy's Tacos
85 Insurgentes
2 Tacos al Pastor = 18 pesos.

These are so delicious, you'll fight all of the aficionados just to get a front row seat.
If I dream about these again tonight don't wake me up.

Daily Total: 48 pesos= $3.69

Not a Calorie Counting Day...

Correo 29
Croissants and a Conga = 52 pesos

Better than the ones you've eaten in Paris Croissants for just 14 pesos. Pair it with a Conga for a total of 52 pesos.

I'm hooked on both and if I had no discipline at all, I would be here for breakfast every morning... in the prime spot- the window seat.

3 PM
El Tucan
Hernandez Macia's 56
Flautas = 30 pesos

My go-to favorite when it comes to Mexican. The flour tortilla version tastes just as comforting as a chicken pot pie.

This dish is topped with so many fresh vegetables you forget the meal ever saw a pan of oil in the first place.

Daily Total: 82 pesos = $6.31

Tuesday Market Eats and a Cajun Feast...

9 AM
Rodriquez Family Barbacoa
Section 3, Aisle 3 –Tuesday Market
Barbacoa = 20 pesos

I love Barbacoa for breakfast and The Rodriguez Family Barbacoa stand is my first stop at Tuesday market. I get a half cup of the caldo without vegetables and extra Barbacoa and then load up with the just chopped cilantro, onions and of course lime.

This is not just a cold weather feast. 20 pesos.


Bautista Brothers Carnitas
Section 2, Aisle 1-Tuesday Market
Carnitas = 26 pesos

More often than not someone is bringing out a fresh tray of Carnitas or I have a perfect sense of timing. Bautista Brothers offers them in a torta or a hot, fresh-made tortilla. Either way, you'll swear you're in Carnita heaven. Torta 26 Pesos.

7 PM
Hidalgo #12
(Split) Soft Shell Crab Sandwich = 58 pesos

OK, not perfection but when you're craving crabs and the ocean is hours away, this is the next best thing.

Besides, a side dish of onion rings are near perfection.

Daily Total: 84 pesos = $6.46

Mexican Comfort Food and Peruvian Delights...

10 AM
El Pato
Calzada de la Estacion 175
Mixiotes = 50 pesos

As I've said before, you can't get comfort food any better than this. One of the best dishes in San Miguel. Reminds me of my mothers pot roast.

5 PM
La Parada
Recreo 94

Are you surprised that all of the ceviches run 25 pesos for the small portions except the Salmon with snow pods, seaweed and cucumber is 35 pesos. Eat two and you have a meal for just 60 pesos.

Daily Total $110 pesos = $8.47

A Chicago Dog and ThBest Tacos In Town...

1 PM
Chucho's Gyros
Below Ten Ten Pie on Sterling Dickenson
Gyros or Chicago Dog=35 pesos

The dog has flavor and Chucho finally has those Chicago ingredients down to a science. No ketchup please.

Not unusual to eat two but today, I'm on a budget and one does the trick.

6 PM
La Azotea
Umaran 6
2 Jicima taco
90 pesos

The best taco artisan taco in San Miguel? The thin sliced Jicima shell and the fried leeks puts this taco in a class all it's own.

Daily total $125 pesos = $9.62

A Meal In A Bowl and Southern Italian Delicious...

1 PM
La Pozoleria
Calzada de Luz 51A
Green Pozole 38 pesos = $2.92

This Pozole is so good, I would eat it every day...and probably will when January rolls around. I even love it when it's San Miguel hot...if I can remember what that is.

7 PM
Hotel Sautto
Hernandez Macias 59

This is a splurge day. What's on my menu?

Amatriciana, made with fresh tomatoes, smoked pancetta, garlic, onion and basil. 85 pesos.

Margarita Hotel Sautto. 60 pesos

Daily Total: $184 pesos = $14.16

Upscale restaurants today: Moxi, Hansens and a bottle of Chardonnay

9 AM
Hotel Matilda- Moxi
Aldama # 53
Breakfast = 55 pesos

Yogurt, fruit and granola + fine china + pool view = Best Breakfast Deal In Town.
55 pesos.

3 PM
Calzada de la Aurora 12
Steak Dinner = $109 pesos.

Nothing better than ending the week with a great steak. Hansen's serves the best with fries and a salad. It's a 1-4 PM special for $109 pesos.

La Europa
Canal 13
Bottle of Antares Chardonnay from Chile = 58 pesos

If Chamonix (Sollano 17) serves this Chardonnay, it's good enough for me. They charge 60 pesos a glass. You can buy the entire bottle at La Europa for just 58 pesos. Can't believe that I like a Chardonnay this cheap!

Daily Total:$ 222 pesos = $17.09

Grand Total $76.73 + 15% = $88.23

Many readers tell me if they're under $100 a week they are happy especially when they're this well fed.

Now, grab the list again and plan your restaurant outings for next week. 

Yes, you're likely to change a menu item or two or three but that's part of discovering why eating out in San Miguel is so much fun.

Buen Apetito!