Hello Fellow Travelers:
Welcome to our world of business information, museums, adventure, birding, botanical gardens, good eating and fine wines. This newsletter provides you with “The Welge Report for Mexico City.
Please share it with your friends, customers and associates. You can also access more than 100 cities on our website plus lots of other helpful travel tips at: thewelgereport.com/
Recognition: We extend special thanks to the people who manage and/or own the institutions, museums and restaurants featured in our guides. In some instances we have relied on their descriptions and photos.
Birding Opps: Info for our birding friends. In and near Mexico City you can see these species: lots of Warbler varieties, Sierra Madre Sparrow, Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher, Ruby Crowned Kenglet, Berrylline Hummingbird and Inca Dove.
At Surfbirds.com (surfbirds.com/trip_report.php?id=2394) Michael Hurben provides a personal account of birding in and near historic sites.
At Mexico Birding (mexico-birding.com) you can access tours, guides and birds species.
Our friends at Birding Pal (birdingpal.org/Mexico.htm) have listed their contact information for your use.
Shopping: Everywhere you go in Mexico City there are shops, boutiques, stores and galleries to tempt your indulgence.
Transportation: What you need to know is here (mexicocity-guide.com)
Business Information: Mexico is open for your Business! Check out (export.gov/mexico/)
Exchange Rates (http://www.x-rates.com/)
US Embassy: (http://mexico.usembassy.gov/) Reforma 305, Col. Cuauhtemoc, Del. Cuauhtemoc, C.P., 01-55-5080-2000, extension 0
Day One: Cousin Sara suggests starting your Mexico City Mini-Holiday by visiting Bellas Artes Palace – Avenida Juarez y Eje Central s/n | Centro Histórico, 51 30 09 00
The Palace hosts exhibitions and theatrical performances, and is the main venue of the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico. It also promotes visual arts, dance, music, architecture and literature.
There are two museums housed within the building: the Museo del Palacio de Bellas and the Museo Nacional de Arquitectura that occupies the top floor of the building.
There are epic murals on interior walls on the first and second floors by some of Mexico’s greatest artists, including Diego Rivera, Jose Clemente Orozco, David Alfaro Siqueiros and Rufino Tamayo.
On the ground floor you will find a restaurant and bookstore.
One of the highlights of The Palace is the glass curtain in the main theater. It was designed by Mexican artist, Dr. Atl, aka Gerardo Murillo, and built by Tiffany of New York.
This stage curtain is a stained-glass foldable panel representing the landscape of the Valley of Mexico with its two great volcanoes: Popocatepetl and Iztacchihuatl.
Time for lunch at Casa Merlos – L: Daily, Vicotriano Zepeda 80. col. Observatorio, 52 77 43 60
You are up for an adventure, aren’t you? Try the chapulines for a starter. That sweet, smoky flavor is fried insects.
Next up are the chalupas, small tortillas filled with fatty pork and finally from the cuisine of Puebla, the mole poblano with chicken or pork.
Casa Merlos offers seven mole varieties, each from a different Pueblan village.
A wine to go with your grasshoppers, try a ’11 Impetu Rose.
After this fabulous lunch you need a walk which you will get at the Chapultepec Anthropology and History Museum - Paseo de la Reforma and Gandhi s. No.., Polanco Chapultepec, CP 11560, Del. Miguel Hidalgo, 5286 1791
The Anthropology and History Museum is one of the most important museums of Mexico, it combines archaeological and ethnographic artifacts collected since the eighteenth century.
It has 26 rooms arranged chronologically and grouped into cultural areas containing unique pieces, maps, summary tables, illustrations and visual elements.
The layout of the museum allows the visitor to choose what interests them and adapt their time accordingly.
Dinner is at Les Moustaches – L: Daily, D: W-Sa, Rio Sena 88, between Paseo de la Reforma and Rio Lerma, 5533 3390
Start with the Galician octopus with paprika, potato, sea salt, olive oil and asparagus or the chipotle abalone.
A glass of the ’10 Monte Xanic chardonnay would be a nice pairing.
Then we suggest the pink pepper duck with home fries or the veal chop Provencal with a baked potato and vegetables. Cousin Bill recommends an order or two of the gratinated mushrooms.
The ’09 Casa Madero would be a good match. Dessert is the artisan sorbet.
Day Two: Breakfast is at Casa de los Azulejos – B,L,D: M-Sa, Madero 4 | Centro Histórico, 5-518-6676
This is the original Sanborns, housed in the centuries-old Casa de los Azulejos, or House of Tiles. It is located in the downtown historic district, and it’s covered with beautiful blue and white tiles.
Place an order for the chilaquiles, crushed soft corn tortillas covered in a green chile sauce and smothered with cheese.
Ask your waitress to top this dish with a couple of over-easy eggs and you’ll be in heaven. Another good choice is the huevos rancheros.
Your first stop this morning is The Frida Kahlo Museum , also known as the Blue House – Tu-Su: 10-5:45, W: 11-5:45, Londres 247 | Col. Del Carmen, Coyoacan, 55 54 59 99
The building was the birthplace of Kahlo, and is also the home where she grew up, lived with her husband Diego Rivera for a number of years, and eventually died in one of the rooms on the upper floor.
The museum contains a collection of artwork by Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera and other artists along with the couple’s Mexican folk art, pre-Hispanic artifacts, photographs, memorabilia, personal items, and more displayed in the rooms of the house which remains much as it was in the 1950s.
Today, it is the most popular museum in Coyoacán and one of the most visited in Mexico City.
Your next stop is Xochilmilco best known for its canals, but first Cousin George wants you want to see the Museo Dolores Olmedo – Tu-Su: 10-6, México 5843, La Noria, Xochimilco, 52 55 5555 1016
The Dolores Olmedo Museum is housed in a rambling stone structure, originally dating from the Sixteenth Century, formerly known as the Hacienda La Noria.
The world’s most important collections of works by Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo are housed here permanently. The Museum also offers concerts, recitals, dance programs and crafts fairs.
In Xochilmilco number of small, non-motorized boats and barges float on the waters of the canals. They are popular with tourists coming into Mexico City, but also with locals, especially on Sundays.
The most common boats are called “trajineras,” which look similar to gondolas, but are modeled after pre-Hispanic vessels called acallis.
There are over two hundred trajineras located in the nine docks or “embarcaderos” that have access to the canals.
On weekends, sections of the canals are filled with trajineras with noisy revelers. You can buy food, drinks and even plants from trajineras that wander the canals and approach the trajineras filled with tourists.
Mariachi and other bands also can be hired to play a few songs along the way.
Lunch today is at The San Angel Inn – B,L,D: Daily, Diego Rivera No. 50 y Altavista Col. San Angel Inn, 56 16 14 02
For starters try the cebiche Acapulco style or my favorite tortilla soup. Then we suggest the sea bass Vera Cruz or the roast duck with a blackberry sauce and for dessert the goat milk crepes.
The ’10 Dubacanp Tempranillo was work with these choices
After lunch you should visit the Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo House-Studio Tu-Su: 10-6, Av. Altavista corner Calle Diego Rivera (In front of San Ángel Inn Restaurant)
It was built in 1931 by the architect Juan O’Gorman (whose daughter was married to a childhood friend of mine) who designed and constructed it based upon the 5 points proposed by Le Corbusier.
The structure is supported by pilotis. It has an open floor plan, and a free façade, a roof garden (to compensate the green area consumed by the building) and long strips of windows.
This interesting space is composed of two main houses, a red one that represents Diego Rivera and a blue one for Frida Kahlo. They are joined by a bridge representing a bond of passion between them. It’s a must-see place for art and architecture lovers.
If you’re here on a Saturday head for the San Ángel Saturday Bazaar and Art Fair - Centro de San Ángel, Saturday: 9-6
When you arrive at the corner of Revolución and Frontera, you will first encounter the Plaza del Carmen.
The fences along the sidewalks will be lined with arguably some of the best artwork to be found for sale in the city.
Keep heading west up the hill to the main show surrounding the Jardín del Arte.
Here, you’ll find more artwork and handicraft stands. Surrounding the plaza are shops (open every day) containing high-end artwork, furniture and house decorations.
On the north side on Calle Miramón is a red building called Plaza San Jacinto, a two story colonial hacienda filled with more handicrafts and artwork.
Dinner is at Casa Portuguese – B,L,D: M-Sa, Emilio Castelar 111 Polanco, Miguel Hidalgo, 5281 0075
Start with the marinated tuna with olives, onions and green pepper or cod fillet baked with olives, cooked potatoes and sliced onion.
Then you might enjoy the baked cornish chicken jus with mushrooms and bacon served with potato and vegetables chambray or fried marinated rabbit with bacon in Portuguese sauce with potatoes.
The La Cetto Nebbiolo would be a nice match.
After dinner our Cousin Ricardo insists that you visit Plaza Garibaldi - # 12 Col. Centro
Although its official name is Plaza Santa Cecilia (the patron saint of musicians) it is popularly known as Garibaldi Square in honor of the Italian patriot Giuseppe Garibaldi.
There are roving mariachis, as well as ‘norteño’ (country-style) music or white-clad ‘jarocho’ bands (Veracruz-style) and the softer sounds of ‘marimba’ musicians peddling songs in the outdoor plaza where you can also buy beer and shots of tequila.
A typical group consists of four violins, a brass section of two trumpeters standing back so as not to drown out the others, three or four men on guitars of varying kinds and sizes, and a vocalist.
Leaving Plaza Garibaldi can be dangerous, we suggest that you arrange for transportation ahead of time.
Day Three: Breakfast is at El Cardenal – Juárez 70 Colonia Centro, Cuauhtémoc, 5518 6632
Breakfast at El Cardenal is an example of Mexican countryside cuisine. Everything on their menu is very good.
We suggest the dry beef with eggs made Michoacan lowland’s style, the scrambled eggs in a traditional clay casserole or the rolled tortillas stuffed with chicken.
The house special creation is the chocolate “Doña Oliva” ®, freshly baked bread, and the thick nata (froth) made from fresh pasteurized milk.
After breakfast take a look or two at Museo de Arte Moderno – Tu-Su: 10:15-5:30, Chapultepec Park, Reforma and Gandhi, 5553 6223
The core collection here focuses on the first half of twentieth century Mexican art.
The works fundamental to understanding the Mexican art featured here are Angel Zárraga, Gerardo Murillo (Dr. Atl), Roberto Montenegro, the muralists Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, José Clemente Orozco.
Works by artists Abraham Ángel Manuel Rodríguez Lozano, Frida Kahlo, Carlos Orozco Romero, Rufino Tamayo, Julio Castellanos, Maria Izquierdo, Agustín Lazo and Juan O’Gorman are here.
Then it’s on to the Placio Nacional – M-Sa: 10-5, Avenida Pino Suarez, Corregidora esquina Guatemala | Zócalo, 52 55 3688 1261
This site has been a palace for the ruling class of Mexico since the Aztec empire.
The palace’s building materials are from the original one that belonged to Moctezuma II. But the reason you want to visit The National Palace is to see the Diego Rivera murals.
For your final meal on this journey we suggest Los Danzantes - Plaza Jardin Centenario 12 Col. Villa Coyoacan, 5554-1213
You might enjoy starting with the baby octopus charred with parsley, paprika and orange juice potatoes or the coconut-breaded shrimp with sweet and sour sauce and a touch of chile de arbol.
Then for a main the red snapper marinated in a chile sauce and mirin piquin on a bed of vegetables or the organic chicken breast with black mole Oaxaca style, with rice and fried plantains.
And for dessert go for the pears mezcal with cocoa, cardamom ice cream and a brown sugar reduction.
A good wine pairing is the ’11 Piedra del Sol Chardonnay.
Until next time, best wishes and safe travels,
Dick & Dee Welge
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