The above photo illustrates the combination of traditional and modern culinary thought by celebrated chef Enrique Olvera. Graduating from the Culinary Institute of America Snr. Olvera set himself back in the culinary mecca of DF. Rather then imitating the New York food scene, Enrique opened Pujol with a daring approach – combing modern culinary techniques with the traditional ancient jewels of Mexican cuisine.
You can taste his success, but if you are looking for rankings, in 2012 Pujol ranked number 36th best restaurant in the world. In 2014 we see a big jump up to number 20. Kudos to well deserved accolades.
Pujol offers two tasting menus: ocean and earth. We ordered both, only adjusting Earth to be vegetarian. Thankfully – and contrary to many cities – this request was not an issue; quite contrary, the chef was pleased to adapt and create special courses for us.
As an overture to our evening we were presented with perfectly round pumpkin emitting a aromatic smoke. Inside, to our delight, were smoked elotes skewers (baby corns) with a dipping coffee mayonnaise and ant dust.
An then the parade of mezcals and memorable delights began, starting with an extensive list of mezcals and the best sangritas we had in all of Mexico!
Service was to the top, no pretension and just lovely service. Again, like Biko and Dulce Patria, the sommeliers and waiters, were educated patient and knowledgeable; giving detailed descriptions and answers to our endless list of questions.
Thin avocado slices replacing a traditional deep fried flauta tortilla, filled with shrimp and octopus and a crunchy surprise, along with a chipotle mayonnaise on cilantro emulsion
Chicharron de Queso is a cheese tuile topped with three different avocado puree; one with chapulines (grasshoppers); the second one with pico de gallo (fresh chopped red onion, tomato, chile and lime) and the third avocado pure topped with tomatillo, cilntro and a bit of green chile.
One grilled octopus tentacle tempura’d on one end and topped with pico de gallo (fresh chopped red onion, tomato, chile and lime) on the other. Adorned with olive sauce and basil reduction.
This dish has a striking presentation and is cooked point to perfection. This is one of the menu items were you can clearly appreciate the quality and freshness of the ingredients and see where the top ranking is deserved.
From left to right:
Salsa Roja: roasted garlic, onion, manzano and habanero chiles
Salsa Yucateca: pumpkin seeds, chamomile, lime and cilantro
Salsa Verde: habanero chiles, cilantro with its roots y and tomatillo
Caramelized camote (sweet potato) crunchy amaranth tuile, yogurt ice cream, milk panacotta y guayabato (large guava with pink flesh) puree all the ingredients complemented each other seamlessly.
Pan seared Guachinango (red snapper) with ginger orange mojo habanero (garlic sauce) and tatemado (tatemar is a special charring technique in Mexican culinary that utilizes a cast iron pan) male plantain and onion puree
Lime margarita granita with cointreau cream and meringues topped with lemon zest and begonia dragon petals, not only beautiful but very refreshing like a bowl of snow.
At the very end of our meal we had the Chipilín Sorbet. Chipilin in an herb similar to the verdolaga and it grows in southern Mexico places like Chiapas and Oaxaca. It was flambe’d in mescal in a colorful last performance.
Cremoso de Aguacate is an avocado cream with salted macadamias coconut ice cream almond crumble and coconut gelatin
Heirloom tomato salad with breaded Oaxaca cheese balls resting over avocado puree, fried tomato skin, bean leafs, sesame and chili vinaigrette. On this dish the fried tomato skin was a revelation on color, texture and flavor
Fish (robalo) ceviche taco; the tortilla was made with chayote and hoja santa topped with black bean puree, serrano chile, totomoxtle (the dried husk of an ear of corn) powder and dry chiles with lime juice.
Thinly blown sugar sphere filled with piloncillo (unrefined sugar that is commonly used in Mexican cooking), ice cream and guava puree. It is topped with tiny lime meringues, peanut powder, amaranth crumble and mandarin gelatin.
We don’t know what was more impressive, the texture or the flavours – not to mention the super skilled pastry kitchen, blowing sugar so thin and perfect requires years of practice and patience.
above photos The Sous Chef and the very skilled team that makes it happen
(52) 5 545 3507
Francisco Petrarca 254 Polanco, México, D.F. 11570
14:00 – 15:30 Monday – Saturday
20:00 – 22:30 Monday – Saturday