Monday, March 8, 2010

Restaurant Velazquez—Two nights in a row

Bury your feet in the sand – yes, the warm sand – and watch the setting sun drown in the sea. Listen to the moans of the wooden fishing boats, creaking and nudging each other before you, jostling for a free space. El mar is no more than five feet away and you can hear it lapping against the silky sand. This is a good dining experience.

Grab your flip flops and open up your Sol (lime and salt preferred) to Isla de Mujeres. What better place than Velazquez Restaurant, where you can take in the unbeatable sunset and the water, literally at your feet, while feasting on some of the freshest seafood the Palateers have had the joy to consume. After some select Palateers restaurant experiences (always the good ones), we pledge that we will immediately return the next night, in order to relive the magic. We rarely follow through, except for this restaurant.

Velazquez is located on the impossibly thin Isla de Mujeres, off the coast of Cancun. Take care when crossing the street, the retired middle aged Minnesota man, with a lobster colored face and matching round belly driving the golf cart straight at you, is likely inebriated. If you can make it across alive, then you are in for a treat.

Velazquez specializes in the dining delicacies of the deep sea. Fish, shrimp, lobsters, squids and crabs are the prominent categories. You can also take in a sampling of the many fine island beverages, mostly encompassing tequila inspired concoctions and your standard 2 for 1 cervezas. The waitstaff is entertainment to itself as it plays a nightly round of musical chairs, fitting impossibly sized groups of newcomers into ever changing patterns of plastic tables and chairs.

Fills the stomach while you wait
One thing you should prepare for is the long wait for your food. Maybe this is why they supply you with a delicious pre-dinner sampling of crispy tortilla chips and salsa-adorned guacamole, which is inevitably finished long before your dinner arrives. This would also be a fine time to enjoy a margarita, as we did our first night. The heavy-hitting tequila-laden right hook cocktail gave a good buzz and was far superior to the light sugary mojito we had our second night.
Too Sugary Mojitos
Although all the entree options are tempting, the filete of fish meal is inolvidable – unforgettable - and most reasonably priced. Served grilled, with garlic sauce, or fried, this fish meal will leave you wanting to come back a second night. The pescado was fresh and savory, especially when infused with a dash of lime. We enjoyed creating small tacos from the never ending supply of fresh tortillas, and the other side dishes, included a small salad, beans, rice, hot peppers, and five french fries.
If we came back two nights in a row for the same meal, we think you'll enjoy Velazquez for at least one.

Velazquez Restaurant
Isla de Mujeres, Mexico

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