In Three Parts.
We just got back from visiting family in New Jersey. As is our custom, we dedicated a few days in Mexico City for decompression and gourmandizing. This time, we had the pleasure of the company of Jennifer Rose.
Since we can eat Mexican food all the time in our home territory of Michoacán, our restaurant meals, with the exception of a few odd ones in the Hotel Stanza's Wings restaurant (a sort of Mexican Denny's), were all International/ethnic cuisine.
(Since I was using an iPad for the first time to take photos, the results were not often the best. I'll provide links to the photos taher than dispalying them here. (OH! The shame!).
Our first stop, on Friday evening, was El Jamil, a long established Lebanese restaurant in the Hipódromo-Condesa Colonias. It's on Avenida Amsterdam # 306 at the corner of Calle Celaya.
The genial co-owner host spoke English, and was helpful in explaining some of the dishes to us. But, not being total noobs, we were already familiar with most.
Appetizers, or mezze play a big role in Middle Eastern meals. We had Hummus with meat, roasted eggplant with tomatoes,and jocoque with garlic. All three had bold, tart flavors.
My companions split an expensive bottle of Lebanese red wine. I abstained, but for a sip. Instead, I requested mint tea, which was very nice, made with whole mint leaves, not teabags.
We ordered only two main dishes. Sra. Cuevas had Cilantro Shrimp, which were very nice, although few in number.
Jennifer and I split an order of Roasted Lamb Ribs, which are sort of baby lamb chops. They were cooked nicely, but some had very chewy edges.
For dessert, Jennifer had Baklava, in the form of cylindrical cigarette tubes. They tasted much better than they looked.
I got a spectacular and delicious Fideos Con Natas. It has a base of crisply golden fried vermicelli noodles, a modest amount of sweet syrup, and heaped with a cloud of soft milk curds.
We quite enjoyed our meal, but our evening was marred when we requested that they call a taxi. That was duly done, but what appeared was a luxury SUV, totally in excess of our modest needs, and an exorbitant rate of $150 pesos to carry us to our hotel. We refused and got out.
The situation further deteriorated when the waitstaff refused to call the number of another taxi service whose card I had. We had a long, long wait to grab a roving taxi.
Service: * Several points off for the taxi caper!
Cost: $$$$$+ Very expensive. With care and vigilance, could be somewhat less.
Ambience: Informal, casual. A bit drab. Outside terraza available.