When I first came to Mexico City, portions were always generous, and quality was a quality necessary for survival. Mexico City lives on its stomach, and if a restaurateur/street stall fails to deliver, his business will fall over in no time. There’s no better business to get into if you believe the statistics. While the average new business in DF folds within a couple of years, the life of a food stall averages 11 years apparently.
But I have noticed over the last year, maybe two years, that quality is falling. Vips and Sanborns used to offer a trusted option. Nothing too adventurous, but you knew what you’d get, and that you’d get it quickly and with a smile. Not so anymore, in my experience. If I previously gave them 7 stars out of 10 (you’d need 50 Gary stars to get one Michelin one – I’m really no food expert) , they’re hovering between 4 or 5 stars these days. Small portions, often not hot enough, served in understaffed joints by harassed waitresses.
There’s still a whole load of great places to eat, make no mistake, but the downsizing of portions has become more common. So it’s a pleasant surprise when you get a giant plate load of food delivered to your table. There’s an ice cream/coffee shop on Plaza Luis Cabrera (map number 49) that serves up good coffee in fairly average sized mugs, but profiteroles on giant plates with plenty of chocolate. Tasty, plenty and…expensive. But worth it. And it’s a nice area, just off Alvaro Obregon, one of my favourite haunts. And home to everyone’s favourite bus company.