Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Fresh Fish in Sayulita: Dining in the Riviera Nayarit

There has been relatively much travel in the Denver on a Spit household of late. Although when one is burdened blessed with twin toddlers, any venture out of the house may qualify as travel in that it is endlessly tiring and unforgivingly eventful. That has been part of the reason for my slow-to-post ways over the past couple months, and while I don't want to bore my Denver readers any more than I already do with non-Denver news, I really wanted to say something about our most recent trip to Mexico.

We ended up staying in a small town north of Puerto Vallarta that, coincidentally, was just written up by another Denver media outlet that you may or may not have heard of before, 5280. I am speaking of the weirdly enchanting little beach town of Sayulita, that somehow has many of the things I despise about many Mexican beach towns: American and European-ized restaurants and shops--yet has me determined to make it back some day. Having only spent a week there, I can't come to any conclusions, but the non-Mexicans who have moved to Sayulita in droves over the past decades do not seem to be the typical big resort types, though some clearly cannot spell:

The food, alas, thanks to the oh-so-many ex-pats can be both expensive and a little bland. Luckily, however, there is still enough local flavor so as one can dish out about $7.50 USD and eat this, at a classic beachside place called El Costeño:

Two fried whole fish freshly caught that morning, only hours from their last desperate flaps to return to their ocean home-- instead steaming hot on my plate quite literally oozing roasted garlic and oil from their gills--or more specifically, the small slices made through their delicate, now-crunchy skin. This is exactly what I crave when I visit a Mexican beach and El Costeño of Sayulita delivered. It was so good in fact, that instead of risking a less-than-stellar meal at an over-priced "dinning" joint I returned to gorge myself on this same exact dish the very next night. Plus, you couldn't beat the view.

The restaurant again, is El Consteño, if you ever make it down.


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