Oaxaca Culinary Delights
Collected by Suzanne Barbezat, AFAR Local Expert
From spicy mole to heirloom corn, and from tejate to freshly ground chocolate, Oaxaca offers taste experiences that you won't find anywhere else in the world.
Reforma 402, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
Run by the talented Chef Pilar Cabrera, who also offers cooking classes through Casa de los Sabores, La Olla is an unpretentious restaurant offering Oaxacan specialties. Head to the upper-level dining room, which is more spacious than the ground...
Av Belisario Domínguez 513, Reforma, 68050 Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
Its name means "flower of the corn" and this little eatery in Oaxaca's Colonia Reforma offers local snacks and dishes prepared with a few different varieties of organic heirloom corn. Besides the ubiquitous quesadillas, tacos and memelas, Itanoni...
Calle de Los Libres 212, RUTA INDEPENDENCIA, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
These large, thick tortillas are called "tlayudas" and they're a Oaxaca specialty that you're unlikely to find elsewhere in the country. They're prepared by spreading pork fat and bean paste on the tortilla, then the Oaxaca string cheese called...
Calle de Mariano Abasolo 121, RUTA INDEPENDENCIA, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
Oaxaca is known for its moles. The most famous is mole negro, the black mole—a thick, rich mixture of ground chiles, nuts, chocolate, and other ingredients. But that's not the only type of mole you'll find here. Los Pacos specializes in these rich...
20 de Noviembre Loc. 39, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
Inside the Mercado 20 de Noviembre you'll find many food stalls to choose from. The Comedor Maria Teresa (Local #38) is a good bet. They have excellent mole, which you can enjoy with chicken and rice, or in enchiladas, as pictured above. A full...
Barrio de Jalatlaco, Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
Throughout Mexico in the many colorful markets there are lots of interesting items for sale, from live animals and produce to clothing and all sorts of knickknacks. Food is also plentiful and varied. But nothing seems to have registered more with...
Flores Magón s/n, Local 30-31, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
While wandering through Oaxaca's markets, you'll probably spot large clay basins filled with a liquid that's topped with a beige foam. This is tejate, a drink that dates back to pre-Hispanic times. It's made with cocoa beans, maize, the seed of...
Mezcal is Oaxaca's smokey spirit of choice and one of the best places to try it is at the mezcaleria Los Amantes in Oaxaca City. The walls of the funky space on Allende 107 in the historical district are lined with dozens of clay pots that were...
De la Danza SN, Centro, 68000 Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
In Oaxaca, shaved ice is fittingly referred to as nieve which means snow in Mexican. Large tin buckets filled with water and flavoring are typically spun by hand in a bed of ice resulting in a dizzying variety of nieve. One of the best places to...