Circuito Arqueologico, Av. del Puente S/N, 55820 San Francisco Mazapa, Méx
55 5191 9799
Visiting the imposing pyramids in Teotihuacán, on the outer edge of Mexico City, isn’t just an opportunity to enjoy some amazing ancient history, and to take awesome pictures of yourself standing on top of these incredible man-made landmarks; but it’s also the perfect chance to enjoy some delicious exotic food while you’re there. La Gruta Restaurant makes a great addition to your trip as it prepares Mexican food mainly influenced by pre-Hispanic cuisine all within a nice setting that features beautiful lighting and decorated tables inside a natural grotto (it’s not just another food stall!). Many distinguished celebrities have visited La Gruta since it first opened in 1906, including painters (and married couple) Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, Queen Elizabeth II, and writer José Luis Borges, among many others.
La Gruta’s dedication to the pre-Hispanic culinary heritage that was inspired by the neighboring pyramids (which are literally a 10-minute walk away, less than 1km.) has turned it into one of the most traditional and impressive places in the area in its own right. The grotto where the restaurant is located is itself a spacious cavity of volcanic origin, surrounded by vegetation which creates an amazing, almost mystic, atmosphere for the whole place. Yet don’t think that La Gruta is another tourist trap focusing on the experience that doesn’t have the food to match it, because the cuisine at this place means serious business. They emphasize the seasonality of the produce in their kitchen all the while creating a sustainable chain between themselves and their providers.
There’s a selection of traditional Mexican dishes if you’re palate is not of the adventurous kind, like barbacoa, guacamole, fresh-made tortillas, and a wide variety of moles made from scratch; but the main attraction is the exotic fare that is served like the escamoles (ant larvae, which are actually delicious inside a guacamole taco); meocuiles and chinicuiles (white and red caterpillars) served with sliced peppers and onions. Even the drinks come with a different kind of twist, there’s a cricket margarita that has one of these little critters decorating the side of a wide margarita glass.
Legend holds that entering and exiting the cave is like being reborn spiritually, candles are lit for the diners for this purpose supposedly. This dining experience is special in a way that will at least open your eyes to a new variety of Mexican cuisine. It’s not as cheap as your typical food stall, you may expect to drop somewhere between $500 and $575 pesos per person, yet La Gruta’s special brand of cuisine inspired in culture and tradition is sure worth an extra something.