2 years ago

Street Food for Thought: Veracruz

I ate my way around Veracruz during my week or so there. Given its location and various regions with unique climate, there is some great street food here. These are the ones I think are worth seeking out.

Seven things to eat and drink in Veracruz

Coffee

Cafe veracruzanoVeracruz’s fertile land is where some of the country’s best coffee is grown. Coatepec, a Pueblo Mágico known for its coffee, is worth a visit (they have a coffee museum that explains a lot about the golden grain).

Down in the port of Veracruz, you can’t leave without trying a lechero at one of three well-known, old-school establishments (La Parroquia, Gran Cafe de La Parroquia, Gran Cafe del Portal), where bow-tied waiters will pour your cafe au lait with style.

Lechero Veracruz 20160209_122719

Volovanes

Flaky pastries stuffed with really good stuff (pineapple/ham; beans/chorizo; rajas; and a bunch more), you’ll find them on just about every corner in the city of Veracruz; undoubtedly the most common street food here. Look for the vendors with a basket, pay your 12 or 13 pesos, and enjoy your filling volován.

Volovanes Veracruz Volovanes Veracruz Volovanes Veracruz

Vuelve a la Vida

If you are in the port city of Veracruz, this savory seafood cocktail is one that shouldn’t be missed! Shrimp, octopus, crab, oysters, and sea snail swimming in avocado, onion, cilantro, ketchup, and a little olive oil.

Vuelve a la vida - Tampico Mariscos Veracruz

It’s known to be a great cure for hangovers (vuelve a la vida means return to life), but I know it as a damn good lunch.

For an absolutely stellar (huge, cheap, and delicious) one, head to Tampico Mariscos, a really popular, busy, and entertaining stand at Mercado Hidalgo. $80 pesos with large shrimp, $50 with small shrimp, and you can get it with the usual five primary ingredients or ask for it however you want. Eat it there or get it to go.

Tampico Mariscos Veracruz

 

Tampico Mariscos Mercado Hidalgo VeracruzVuelve a la vida para llevar

Tamales de elote

Good lord, these were good. Specifically the ones at La Güera, a little street stand on the southern corner of Independencia and Lerdo de Tejada. Tamales in Veracruz are widely-known to be some of the best in Mexico. They come wrapped in banana leaves, as opposed to corn husks, and the masa tends to be slightly sweet, which leads to a delicious experience when they have salty fillings.

Tamales La Guera Veracruz

Toritos

A sweet local liquor best enjoyed on a hot day (of which there are plenty in Veracruz).

Toritos La Chata Veracruz

My favorite were the peanut and coffee varieties, but you can get them in a wide array of fruit flavors. They are more widely available in the southern end of the state, but Toritos La Chata in Boca del Rio (the nicest part of the Veracruz metro area) has been making them since 1938. And they are damn good. Try them for $25 per cup, and take a bottle or two of your favorite flavor for $100.

Toritos La Chata Veracruz

Nieve

With hot weather dominating Veracruz for much of the year, ice cream & sorbet is a thing of local pride here, especially refreshing fruit-based ones. There are competing companies literally right next to each other at  and    , near el zocalo. You won’t miss them as their color scheme and approach are identical, with blue and green motifs and employees yelling “Güero, güero” or “güera, güera” at passerby to get their interest.

Neveria Morales Veracruz

Tacos de pibil at Tacos David

Tacos David does one thing and they do it extremely well – tacos de pibil in broth. Some of the best tacos I’ve ever had, for sure.

Tacos de pibil Tacos David Veracruz

Tacos David is on the corner of Esteban Morales and Valentín Gómez Farías. Gotta get there early, as they start in the morning and go until 3 pm or so…depending on when they run out!

Tacos de pibil Tacos David Veracruz

The street food in Veracruz was some of my favorite on the trip so far, as the fresh seafood and unique tacos were fantastic.

 

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2 Thoughts on “Street Food for Thought: Veracruz”

  1. … Amazing your story, even learned about a couple places I didn’t know of… I am Veracruzan born & raised, though since years ago I live in Cancun, go there every few years, a few days… Anyway, your only obvious mix-up is about our tamales… Fact is there are two popular kinds of them… One is wrapped in corned husks, the ones called ‘de elote’, sweet with pork filling… Another one is wrapped in banana leaves indeed, salty with pork filling, they are called ‘de masa’… For all the rest of your account, you are all right ! Remarkable for a traveller… ºvº

  2. Euge, thanks for checking it out! I definitely enjoyed eating my way through Veracruz. Great place. Thanks for the heads up on the tamales!