You may think you already know Mexican food. You may presume a beach resort (especially an All-Inclusive one) will be predictable and serve mediocre chilli con carne and burritos day after day or that all Mexican food is just far too spicy. But Mexican food is actually one of the most varied and most exciting cuisines in the world, and this large country’s diverse gastronomy has gained recognition in discerning cookery circles. You’ll find five hotels in Mexico are part of the Relais & Châteaux collection of luxury hotels and restaurants and are incredible places to indulge in food and drink in the most amazing locations. Here are a few fun foodie facts you may not have known about Mexico:
Did you know?
A bit “corny”
Corn is believed to originate from the Tehuacàn Valley in Mexico, which was the centre of the Aztec civilisation so it’s no surprise the Mexican diet was based around it. Vitamin T (taco, tortilla, tamal, torta, totopos, tostada, tentempie, etc) were staple items and traditionally accompanied by a bowl of beans, cactus leaves and chili peppers in a tasty sauce.
Our beloved Guacamole was made as early as the 16th Century and luckily there’s a chilli heat for every taste, so never assume that every dish is going to be too fiery for you!
The word ‘chocolate’ came from the Aztec word ‘xocoatl’ and it appears that people have been worshipping our cherished chocolate further back than we thought. The Aztec people were brewing drinks from cacao beans as far back as 1900 BC as they believed the cacao seeds were a gift from the god of wisdom (and at times these seeds were even used as a currency!). The Mayan people believed a cacao drink would feed them in the afterlife. Find out more with an Aztec & Maya Encounters Tour.
Tequila (a happy spirit) is Mexico’s national drink, made from the fermented and distilled leaves of the blue agave plant in the city of Tequila near Guadalajara. Similar to rum, there are many types and ages to try. Tequila is one of the best-loved ingredients for a fabulous Mexican cocktail, such as the Margarita! P.S did you know that 22 February is National Margarita Day!?
Chef’s table experience
Some of the best hotels in Mexico offer the opportunity to enjoy a small group chef’s table experience. This informal experience offers the chance to learn more about the origins of popular Mexican dishes, tips on cooking and an insight into local traditions. Recommended chef’s table experiences include the Royal Hideaway Playacar’s 12 course gourmet tasting event and the Viceroy Riviera Maya’s authentic chef’s table experience with their renowned executive chef.
Our recommended hotels
Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa
The exquisite Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa is one of the Riviera Maya’s most acclaimed beach resorts and is a perfect place to enjoy regional food and drink in style. There’s be no better location than Freddy’s Tequila and Ceviche Bar to sample the region’s largest collection of tequila and outstanding fresh-fish ceviche, sushi and sashimi. The breakfast here is simply divine too, featuring many traditional items and the most amazing cup of hot chocolate! Browse our holiday offers.
The Grand Velas Riviera Maya
The Grand Velas Riviera Maya has really raised the bar for a luxury All-Inclusive experience, including premium branded drinks and the chance to dine at five gourmet restaurants. The award-winning Frida a la carte restaurant showcases exceptional Mexican cuisine with a modern twist and the resident sommelier can guide you through a selection of exceptional Mexican wines (taste award-winning wines from Casa Madero, the oldest winery in the Americas). The leading names in Mexican Gastronomy will gather together for behind the scenes tastings at “The Best of Mexico Riviera Maya” food festival from 5-9 October 2016, which will take place at the resort. There will be a 10-course tasting menu at Frida restaurant over the course of four nights, a real treat for foodies and it will be FREE to guests! Browse our holiday offers.
Want to plan a trip to Mexico? Browse our website for our latest holiday offers or call one of our experts on 0203 553 2452!
Joanne Ellis is a product manager for the Caribbean & Mexico and has travelled extensively throughout Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula, visiting some of the best Mayan archaeological sites including Chichén Itzá, Uxmal and Tulum.