Sunday, March 23, 2014

Meals, Mercados & Music in San Miguel

When I arrived to San Miguel de Allende, my friend Suzanne had sent me a wonderful, detailed email called "Eating San Miguel" listing all of the restaurant recommendations from her numerous visits.  I was never able to get to them all…but I sure had a great time trying!

The first restaurant, La Palapa, felt a bit like returning to the beach, as it was an outdoor place specializing in fish tacos.  I arrived late in the afternoon to eat a late lunch/early dinner and had the place to myself. 

The owner quickly delivered my order of 2 fish tacos, a shrimp taco, and a nice cold cerveza (beer), and even though it did not come with the piles of lettuce and tomato that we are accustomed to in the States, there was a delicious green (verde) sauce as well as fresh pico de gallo that complimented the fish quite nicely.


After lunch, I strolled around the tranquil and shaded Parque Benito Juarez to finish off a lovely afternoon.


My next culinary outing was to Suzanne's favorite San Miguel restaurant called La Posadita, on a rooftop next to the Parroquia just down the street from the Jardin.  I went for an early dinner and got a prime table that had views of both the Parroquia and the hillside south of the city.  What a treat!


A couple of guitarists sang and played making the dining experience even more perfect.

Suzanne said that her family always comes to this restaurant for the margaritas and the authentic Mexican chicken pozole.  Since the menu didn’t have any more appealing vegetarian or vegan options, I decided to take a dietary time-out and follow her recommendations.  The pozole was served with spices on the side so you could season it to your preferred “heat”.  I went a bit overboard and needed a few extra glasses of water to keep my tongue from burning off, but otherwise, I really enjoyed trying out this favorite Mexican dish.
I liked the next recommended San Miguel restaurant so much that I ended up eating there a couple of times!  It was another "lunch only" place called Sabores y Salsas.  This small, casual place is run by an accomplished chef named Maria and is only open five days a week from 1:00 to 6:00pm   For only 120 pesos (USD$ 9.25), you get an outstanding 4-course meal consisting of a salad, soup, entre’, desert, and a large pitcher of freshly brewed lemongrass tea.  The menu changes daily and only offers a choice of one meat or one vegetarian entre’, but this allows Maria to serve only the freshest, best ingredients and surprise your taste buds with something you’ve likely never eaten before!
So, while the ambiance and décor of Sabores y Salsas (Tastes and Sauces) might be a bit underwhelming, the food more than makes up for it!
I had to make up for all these delicious (and fattening) meals with a hefty dose of walking.  Fortunately, the hilly streets of San Miguel make that a pleasure (and quite a work-out!).

One afternoon, I also strolled over to the mercados (markets) featuring everything from fresh flowers and produce, to ceramics, shoes, boots, and more.  San Miguel has even bigger markets on the outskirts of town a few times a week, but I decided to pass on those (as my RV is already quite overflowing with stuff).  A great place to photograph and “window-shop” though!

After attending Mazatlan’s gorgeous Teatro Angela Peralta back in January, when I saw that San Miguel also had a theatre of the same name and happened to have an interesting flamenco guitar concert on the Friday night I was there, I just had to go check it out!
San Miguel’s Teatro is much smaller and less ornate than Mazatlan’s, but still features a nice mural in the lobby and multiple horseshoe-shaped balconies.


The concert I attended was by Mexican flamenco guitarist Juan Rosas Ávila (far right in the photo above) along with accompanying musicians playing guitar and cajón (the box shaped instrument on the far left), as well as two women providing rhythmic hand-clapping and foot tapping.

Coincidentally, news of the sudden death of Paco de Lucía (a very popular and beloved Spanish flamenco guitarist and composer), had just been announced a few days before this concert, so the programme was quickly updated to include a number of Lucía’s works (including this encore piece that I captured on video).  What a memorable evening and quite a moving tribute!



  1. That's nothin! You should see my "non-Vegan" list! I scaled way back on the locations for the sizzling street tacos where chicken is considered vegetarian. LOL!

    Funny, the little Sabors y Salsas is in a new location. It used to be in a tiny alcove with only four tables. Looks like she expanded, and maybe lost some of the intimacy. Glad to hear the food is still good.

    Where to now? ;-)

    1. Yes, it's now just down the very busy main drag from the Institute (a couple blocks north of Mega). Still not a very huge place, but a bit bigger (maybe about 8-10 tables now).

  2. Great post and super photos. It's always fun to see what others write about and see! I live few blocks from the mercado and have never photographed it! I haven't been to Maria's either but have heard about it for a couple of years.........Thanks so much for sharing!

    IF you're in Texas in the Hill Country I'm sure the bluebonnets and indian paintbrush flowers are blooming everywhere. ENJOY

  3. What is it about colorful Mexican pottery? I always want some! And mind you, I don't NEED it! Good thing you were there and not me, huh?

    I enjoy your pictures and your posts as always,
    Thanks for sharing!


  4. Very interesting post on San Miguel. Love the food and all the colorful photos. Found your blog on RVillage!


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