Published on March 2nd, 2010 | by Mark Chesnut

Roberto Santibañez’s 5 Favorite Restaurants in Mexico City

Chef Roberto Santibañez

An award-winning chef and Mexico City native, Roberto Santibañez knows a thing or two about the best cuisine in Mexico’s capital. Now based in New York City, Santibañez trained at Paris’s renowned Le Cordon Bleu culinary school and opened several restaurants in Mexico City before spending four years as executive chef at Fonda San Miguel in Austin, Texas. In 2002, he became culinary director for Rosa Mexicano restaurants. Today, Santibañez is the culinary mastermind behind Fonda, a stylish restaurant in Brooklyn, New York that specializes in contemporary Mexican urban cuisine.
Santibañez still visits Mexico City, of course. So where does he go in the D.F. when he wants a truly satisfying meal? Here are his top five choices (and for even more about Santibañez and his creations, you can also visit his own site).

1. El Bajio
“I like the original located in Azcapotzalco. If you want real and traditional flavors that leave you with an impression, this is the place to go.”
Avenida Cuitlahuac #2709, Azcapotzalco; tel. +52-55-5234-3763


El Cardenal

2. El Cardenal
“I like the original one located in Palma Street in the Centro Histórico, but the other two locations are equally good too. This is the best place in the city for breakfast in a sit-down, full-service setting. Try the freshly baked sweet rolls with clotted cream.”
Calle de la Palma #23 and Avenida Juárez #70; tel. +52-55-5521-8815 and +52-55-5518-6632

Casa Merlos

3. Casa Merlos
“I like it for its traditional moles and other dishes from central Mexico.”
Victoriano Zepeda #80, Col. Observatorio; tel. +52-55-5277-4360

Café Azul y Oro

4. Café Azul y Oro
“Located at the Centro Cultural Universitario. I like this restaurant because is one of the most trustworthy and authentic Mexican flavors in Mexico City.”
Avenida Insurgentes Sur 3000; tel. +52-55-5622-7135

5. Pujol

“Located in the posh Polanco district, this place is owned by one of the most creative and young chefs in Mexico. I like this restaurant for dinner and special occasions.”
Francisco Petrarca 254, Col. Polanco; tel. +52-55-5545-3507

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About the Author

The founder and editor of, Mark has more than 15 years of experience as a writer, editor and manager. He's worked with some of the biggest consumer, in-flight and travel trade publishers that cover Latin America.

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