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Eating Huatulco

The two reviews here are provided by Rick Brimacomb and John Williams.

See also the 2001 update, Comida de Los Dios.

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This is an older article but as you can see many of these establishments are still around and are still quite popular. So these places are now classified as "institutions" and are evermore worthy of a visit. This article is still largely valid and provides insight into their development. - tomzap


Casa Del Mar   Located high on the eastern ridge of Tangolunda bay. Friends of ours recommended the restaurant due to fabulous views and romantic ambiance. The only restaurant in Mexico that has as breathtaking of a spot is in Manzanillo at Las Hadas. We went there with somewhat low expectations for the food as our friends had had mediocre food there the year earlier. To our delight, we found the food to be very good. We had a shrimp kabob, a grilled chicken dish and a couple of beers for $34 US.


Sabor De Oaxaca   Clearly the best in Huatulco - authentic, friendly service, relatively cheap, delicious and offers a wide variety of foods. This quaint restaurant is located in La Crucecita about a half block off the zócalo and across the street from the market. A must for anyone visiting Huatulco. We ate here twice, lunch of enchiladas and lemonade was $12 US with tip and dinner was $22 US with a healthy tip. My best meal in Huatulco was a wonderful combo platter of about ten traditional Oaxacan items. Each item was unique and the meal provided a great way to sample a wide variety of local dishes. They advertise a couple of variations of this meal for two people ($15-20 US) but they are willing to cut the price and the portions to serve only one. I would highly recommend this meal to anyone looking to taste the best Mexican food that Huatulco has to offer.

Maria Sabina   Situated right on the south side of the zócalo. Cute spot with good service. Food grilled right out front. Two very delicious entrees, fish and shrimp pochutla in a stone pot. The later of which was a very unique and tasty dish. It was sort of like a seafood veggie soup with a little bit of zing and had a little bit of cheese on the top like french onion soup. I would highly recommend it. Dinner was about $29 including a couple of beers and a generous tip.

El Italianos Pizza and Pasta   Excellent and cheap pizza can be found at El Italianos about a half block off the zócalo from La Flamboyant. Its a small nondescript restaurant that was frequented mostly by the locals. The service was good, the food came quickly and the Pizzas only cost between $3-6 US.

Don Wilo   Located on the zócalo near La Flamboyant, the restaurant was known for its excellent pizza. However, having already had good pizza at El Italianos, we decided to try their Mexican food. The Oaxacan food was quite good and very reasonably priced. The two of us tried three different items and the bill was only about $17 US. Unfortunately, the service was mediocre.

Dona Celia   On the west side of playa Santa Cruz. This was one of about 4 or 5 restaurants that were right on the beach. It had a super location and offered a nice view of the bay and all the boats. We had chicken and fresh lobster for about $26 US including tip. We thought the food was average, not bad, but not up to the level of the other spots we visited.

Oasis   Good breakfast on top of good people watching as this restaurant was located right on the zócalo. We had eggs, fruit, toast, two fresh squeezed OJs and chocolate milk for under $9 US. The food and prices were comparable to Los Portales.

Oasis II   Located about a quarter block off the zócalo and up the street from the other Oasis. The breakfast menu and the food was the same as the other one, although the white-washed walls and fountain at this restaurant added a little bit to the atmosphere. Also not as busy as the Oasis on the zócalo.

Los Portales   Right on the zócalo, near Sabor De Oaxaca and Oasis. Good breakfast and it showed as they drew a big crowd each morning. We had two egg dishes, fruit and two fresh squeezed orange juices for less than $9 US including tip. I would give the nod to Oasis and Los Portales as the best breakfast spots we ate at.

Cactus   We felt this restaurant was highly overrated. It was recommended to us by a couple of people, but if it weren't for its location - right on the zócalo - I don't think it would do well. The menu was limited, the food was average at best, the service was spotty and they tried to overcharge us. The patio area was covered by a tarp which kept the heat and smoke from the grill right on top of the best tables in the house and it seemed hotter than being out in the midday sun. I would not recommend this restaurant.

bakery   Located a half block off the zócalo across the street from the Oasis. The pastries and rolls were all 15¢- 25¢ US. One morning we ate a delicious breakfast of pastries and juice in the zócalo for less than $3 US.

Bings   A great disappointment. Limited selection relative to other Bings locations in Mexico plus they were out of about 50% of the flavors they had on the menu. Cones cost a little over $1 US.

Rick Brimacomb

June 1998

The choices for spots to eat in Bahías de Huatulco are almost limitless. As a poor dive instructor, I haven't had the opportunity to try out all of the five-star eateries, but in this article, I'll try to share some of my more memorable dining experiences.     John Williams


Tangolunda Bay is the home of Bahías de Huatulco's five-star hotels. Each hotel has fine eateries of their own, though most are a little bland by Mexican standards. I'll let you try out the restaurant in your hotel and write us your own review. I have had some very good comments on the Miramar restaurant in the Casa del Mar Hotel on the Balcones de Tangolunda, but have yet to try it myself.
Don Porfirio's is right across from the entrance to Royal Maeva. I've heard their lobster is great. When the Maeva guests tire of the all-inclusive menus, this is a popular spot.
Jarro Café, right across from the Barcelo resort, has a great breakfast; tasty sandwiches and hamburgers, steaks, Dallas Cowboy games on Sundays, and the world's most aggressive parrot, Francisco (Pancho). Pancho will sing to you, talk to you, whistle at you, or whistle a song, and of course nibble on any exposed skin you are brave enough to put in his reach! Rafa and Suzanne also keep a nice saltwater aquarium. This spot is highly recommended!
Also across from the Sheraton employee gate is a small taco stand. The prices are very cheap and the quality is good.
In Playa Chahue, you'll find Ristorant Borselino, an excellant Italian restaurant. Try their Beef Ravioli. They also use real cheese and real Italian sausage on their pizzas. You'll like this place!


Santa Cruz has a beautiful, underutilized Zócalo of its own. In the center is a lovely little gazebo. Topside, where you would expect a band, there is an art gallery. Below, they serve excellent Oaxacan style tamales; good pasteries and superb coffee. Soothing classical music is played for the enjoyment of the diners.
La Pirata Pizza and Fried Chicken in Hotel La Marina has good chicken; great people. Try this one.
There are several beachfront palapa style restaurants near the marina in Santa Cruz. Any of these would be an excellent choice for lobster or fish. Especially recommended is the Vedemar.


As the business and residential section of this bustling resort center, you would expect to find the majority of the restaurants here, and you would not be disappointed. The major tourist-oriented eateries are clustered around the Zócalo. Generally, as you move away from the Zócalo, the food tends to be seasoned more to native tastes, and the prices tend to be more reasonable.
La Tropicana, on the northwest corner of the square, is a 24-hour restaurant featuring several big-screen televisions. The food is well-prepared and not too expensive. Upstairs is the new Live Salsa club, Tropic Majic, brought to you by the same folks who feature Magic Circus disco in Santa Cruz. Needless to say, the music bleeds over into the restaurant, so if you like good Salsa music, this should be a plus.
Just down from La Tropicana on the North side of the square is Don Wilos. I've heard mixed reviews on this one; some folks love it. Pizza is featured; but pizza in Mexico may be a bit, well, strange.
On the east side of the square, the prices tend to be a bit more reasonable. Grills serves food til very late at attractive prices. Los Portales has the best buy in breakfasts and very good tacos as well. Los Portales belongs to the same folks who own the La Iguana bar and Peso's Rent-a-car. The owner, Luis, speaks very good English. Excellent ambiance!

On the southeast corner sits The Oasis. This is the spot in Huatulco for sushi. The sandwiches are quite good. The chiaquiles are the best in town. It's a good place to meet folks.
The south side of the Zócalo features Viva México, María Sabinas, and Cactus. Again, reviews on these have been mixed, though María Sabinas seems to be the best of the lot. On the southwest corner is the Plaza Oaxaca. Inside is Yesterdays Pizza. While I'm not exactly wild about their pizza, they do have a good selection of rock video discs and will let you make a selection.
Sabor de Oaxaca specializes in the regional Oaxacan cuisine and is a MUST at some point during your vacation.
For good chicken at a bargain, try Pollo Imperial. You also get charro beans and a rich ham and pasta salad.
There are innumerable spots for sandwiches and tacos. The scope of this article doesn't allow me to mention them all, but I'll try to hit the high spots. Los Portalitos probably has some of the best tacos in town, as well as char-broiled burgers and charcoal broiled steaks (and chicken).
And, saving the best news for last, our good friends at Bar La Crema have persuaded Ramon to move his taco business to their place. These really are great tacos! They also serve up the only Tex-Mex style cuisine in Huatulco, including Chilibeans, chili rellenos, and darn good nachos.
I don't pretend to have covered everything. There's just so much eating a fellow can do, after all! But I think you'll find something to satisfy just about everyone, and if your evaluation doesn't agree with mine, there's plenty of room here to print your reviews, too.

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