Wednesday, March 2, 2022

As de Guia SMA: Finally Fresh Seafood in SMA

Fresh seafood is finally the new reality in SMA and it’s been a long time coming with Chef Christian Herrera officially opening his new restaurant, As de Guia SMA; one of the best new restaurants in SMA. We attended the inaugural lunch and will be the first to admit that 20+ rounds of seafood is a once in a lifetime dining experience. Chef Herrera works with the distribution company, As de Guia Origen who ships the freshest seafood to Mexico, Asia and the U.S. His new restaurant, As de Guia SMA, has a primarily seafood menu; flying it in fresh every week from Ensenada. Chef Donnie Masterton is also ordering from As de Guia Origen for The Restaurant. All the seafood for this event arrived LIVE from As de Guia Origen the day before. Chef Christian Herrera cooked with Chef Masterton so we got a second helping of the El Sargazo’s grilled octopus with Aguachile; the one Chef Masterton prepared for Outstanding in the Field that we couldn’t stop raving about. Together, these two chefs created one of the most memorable meals we’ve eaten; in our top ten food events of a lifetime. Their seafood mix included two other proteins: Lechon and Short Rib. 20+ dishes were prepared by different methods and we loved everything we tasted. There wasn’t a dish we tried that we wouldn’t order again. Chef Herrera owned Irene Food Truck in Ensenada. In 2017, he started a new project in Valle de Guadalupe, Asador Campestre, at Casa Frida, where he spent the last few years sharing his kitchen along with his fishing and cooking experiences from his many gastronomic trips. Chef Herrera interprets Mexican gastronomy taking up taste memories: the memories from his childhood, local products and using much of what beautiful Mexico has blessed all of us with. He feels lucky to live in a region so rich with great wines, splendid olive oils and treasured products from both the sea and land. His favorite ingredients are chili and smoke. He loves the sea and experiments with the fishermen, looking for alternatives for his cuisine. We had both raw and cooked seafood: Raw: Pai pai and Kumamoto oyster, Chocolate and Geoduck clam, Sea urchin, Secretary crab, Argentine shrimp, Lobina, octopus, Blue sea giga oyster. Cooked: Wild Abalone,/Special Pairing with Casa Dragones Tequila, Tuna, Farmed Abalone, Shredded Bass, Sole, Chione Clam, Pata de Mula clam, Lobina, Totoaba, Suckling Pig, Short Rib. A La Carte: Shells platter tasting, oysters, chili and chorizo, green ceviche, roasted octopus and Aguachile by The Restaurat. Pictured are the: Rockefeller grilled oysters from San Quintin Baja California … Classic dishes never die. Smoked wild abalone with oyster tartar sauce Shrimp with Caviar Chocolate clams with sake and oyster oil Crab salad from Ensenada Octopus and Aguachile Lobina and dry edged tuna with Lenguado y Totoaba Chione with lechón and kimchi Mashed potatoes with cheese and dehydrated vegetables; the chef said he likes to make his vegetables the center point in the meal. Lechón cooked in the caja china Short Rib with carrots Desert … Lemon pie with sea urchin from Ensenada Scallops in honey and chocolate mousse Some of the seafood is caught sustainably so, depending on the seasonality of the fish, they don’t know what they’re going to get until they catch it. Other products are grown and are on the menu often. Here’s the timeline: the fishermen make their catch by 5:00 AM and by the time they pack it up and ship it by plane - that happens usually on Thursday - the restaurant receives the product, dock to plate, hours after they catch it. How’s that for fresh seafood? As de Guia SMA Casa Hoyos Boutique Hotel Mesones No 14, Zona Centro, San Miguel de Allende, Gto 37700 Phone for reservations: 415 152 0002 Chef: Christian Herrera Open: Thursday to Tuesday from 8:00 AM to 11:00 PM. Closed on Wednesdays.