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Travel Guide: Mexico Food & Drink

12th Oct 2011 2:01am | By Editor

Fiery flavours and full-blooded tequilas await.

Prepare yourself for fiery flavours and plenty of delicious dishes in Mexico.

Eating

Tortillas

The basis of native Mexican cooking remains the humble corn-made tortilla. Tortillas are flat, circular, savoury pancakes, generally made from corn or wheat flour. They are the most typical of all Mexican food.

Chilli

There are more than 100 varieties of chillies used in Mexican cooking, ranging in size, shape and flavour strength. They are used to add colour and spice to many dishes, and can take a bit of getting used to if you're not used to fiery dishes.

Frijoles

You can't avoid these is Mexico no matter how hard you might try. Frijoles are beans, often refried, which come with most dishes.

Fresh produce

With heaps of sunshine and fertile land, Mexico produces a wealth of fresh fruit including mangoes, pineapples, avocados and coconuts.

Meals

Mexicans usually eat a light breakfast consisting of coffee or atole (a thick drink made with corn, rice or oats) and some sweet bread or fruit.

A heavier brunch is usually referred to as almuerzo, then between 2 and 4pm comida, the main meal of the day, is taken. It'll usually consist of soup, salad and a guisado, or main dish.

For many Mexicans, the final meal of the day may consist of just a hot drink and some bread.

Regional dishes

In Mexico City you’ll find plenty of cosy restaurants rustling up tamales and enchiladas — the tastiest food on your trip if you're travelling south. Oaxacan cuisine is renowned too. Try local favourite tlayudas: crispy tortillas smothered in cheese, beef or frijoles.

Drinking

Tequila

Tequila is without a doubt Mexico's most famed drop, made from the agave plant, known as maguey in Mexico. Tequila is a type of mezcal that is made exclusively from the blue agave, which is only produced in a region of western Mexico around the town of Tequila in Jalisco.

While it may have earned its popularity among schoolies looking to get drunk fast, premium mezcals and tequilas do also appeal to those with more discriminating tastes — the best tequilas have '100% agave' printed on the label, meaning no other sugars have been added.

Beer

Corona is Mexico's best beer and in some cases in available in shops cheaper than bottled water.

Water

The tap water in much of Mexico is of dubious quality and drinking bottled water is always recommended.