Monday, January 07, 2008

Mar Plata


While San Pancho has plenty of amazing local food and seafood, one thing the tiny fishing village is short on is sparkling wine. Given my affinity toward the bubbly, I was ecstatic to arrive at Mar Plata for Christmas dinner to find a wine menu complete with sparkling wine, prosecco and even a bottle of champagne or two.

Bubbles aside, Mar Plata is stunning. Perched at the top of a winding hill at the north end of town near the Costa Azul resort, the restaurant looks like an abandoned building by day. At night the walls are rolled open, allowing the ocean breeze to seep in. Rusted metal lanterns hang from the dark sky ceiling, and we were seated at a long aqua table that looked like it had spent years in the sun. A soundtrack of everything from St. Germaine to The Cure danced with the night air.

Seared tuna salad with arugula - 110 pesos (Approx. $11)

The greens were a little too soaked in olive oil, but the dish was worth it for the ruby chunks of tuna alone.

Smoked marlin salad with soft shell crab and caper dressing - 135 pesos (Approx $13.50)

John's never met a caper he didn't like, and this dressing was no exception. After a long day of margaritas on the beach he also appreciated the reduced effort required to enjoy crab soft shell style, sans the shucking.

Seared tuna with tomato emulsion - 165 pesos (Approx $16.50)

I ask you, have you ever seen a piece of tuna like that for $16.50? I certainly had not. The emulsion was more mild than I expected, but again, take a look at that hunk of tuna...

Outside skirt - 310 pesos ($31.10)

Definitely one of the more expensive selections on this reasonably-priced menu, but John is worth every penny. The steak had a refreshingly "beefy" flavor, which we attribute to it being grass fed beef. And after a week chock full of seafood, John found that a steak the size of Texas was a nice change.

Chocolate Cake with vanilla ice cream - 70 pesos ($7)

For the sake of variety, I suppose it is a good thing we went to Mar Plata at the tail end of our trip. Otherwise, I have a feeling I would have been tempted to go back every night in order to indulge my need for bubbly.

- Katie

Mar Plata
Calle de Palmas 30, Col. Costa Azul
San Francisco, Mexico
Closed Mondays, and also closed Aug-Sept


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