Let’s be honest here, it’s no secret that I love food! From cooking classes to hunting out the best brunch spots and sampling street food, there is nothing better to me than eating my way through each destination I visit. One thing I was dying to do in Mexico City was a food tour, to really dig down into the delicious corners of the city. When Sabores Mexico offered me the chance to review their food tour in Mexico City I was thrilled. I was even more excited when they told me they had two tours I could join!
Which is the Best Food Tour in Mexico City?
Sabores Mexico offer two different types of food tour in Mexico City; the Historic Centre Food Tour, and the Colonia Roma Food Tour:
If you are staying in a different part of the city, take this chance to explore Roma on the Colonia Roma Food Tour. It is a beautiful neighbourhood, with tree-lined avenues, boutique shops and stuffed with trendy bars, restaurants and cafes. Hipsters will love it for its cool young feel, and other not so trendy folks will enjoy the leafy streets and easy-going vibe.
Bear in mind though that this tour includes a Mezcal shot, a craft beer tasting and a coffee tasting, so isn’t as focused on the food as the Historic Centre tour. This tour emphasises the variety of food and drink available in Mexico City, and includes stops to sample food at a French bistro, a traditional Oaxacan-style kebab, tamales and (some amazing) fish tacos.
Classic foodies will love the Historic Centre Food Tour. This was all about the food! My favourite stops included a Oaxacan restaurant for enchiladas in a rich, chocolatey mole sauce; a street food stand for incredible seafood toastadas, a tour of San Juan market and a traditional cantina. I loved the market stops; we tried different cheeses & cured meats, the brave ones among us sampled chapulines (grasshoppers) and other creepy crawlies, and we had the chance to chat with one of the stall owners as she showcased her fruit, vegetables and wonderful micro-greens and edible flowers! This was also the prettiest dish we ate; a quite wonderful dessert garnished with fresh flowers.
It was a long tour though, and by the end I was very full and very tired! There are perhaps a couple of stops that could have been skipped, but for value for money and a full day experience for me, this tour wins hands down.
What I loved about both Sabores Mexico Food Tours:
At the beginning of each tour we were given a (small) bottle of water, to help wash down our food. I’d also advise bringing a bottle yourself, especially on a hot day!
We were given a detailed map including each location we were going to visit, their contact details & opening hours, as well as discount vouchers for some of them so we could return & enjoy the food in slower time. The booklets also had other recommendations for restaurants in the area and other places of interest, so it can a really useful resource if you’re staying in town for a few days.
The guides were both excellent. They were clearly very knowledgeable about Mexican food, culture & history, and spoke excellent English. At one point in the busy centre a couple of us lost sight of the guide, but she soon realised & came back for us. Trying to herd a bunch of tourists who keep stopping for photographs isn’t easy! Also, on the Roma Tour there had been a mix up with one of the bookings who reserved through their hotel, and this was quickly resolved by our guide who easily accommodated the two extra guests, although this did make the tour group larger than expected it certainly wasn’t a problem for us. We had 10 on our tour, which was manageable, but the maximum is 14 which would be a little crowded I imagine!
At some of the stops we had the chance to chat with the vendors & restaurant owners; if you speak Spanish you’ll have more luck with that, or just ask your guide to translate! These stops such as the edible flowers at Rosse Gourmet in the market on the Historic Centre Tour were my favourite, as these people are experts in their field.
Sabores Mexico offer excellent value compared to other food tours. I also looked into other options for a food tour in Mexico City which were more expensive, and having to pay $85 USD for a street food tour (knowing that street food costs around $1) was too much for me. I liked the mix of food and culture that this tour offered, as we went along the guides paused & shared more information about the history of the area, and of Mexico City in general.
Both tours had enough walking between stops to allow our digestion to get busy! Sometimes the walks between locations seemed too long, but when faced with so many plates of food, I was glad of the rest. In a city as large as Mexico City, Sabores Mexico managed to find good food stops at a reasonable distance from each other.
What I Didn’t Like about the Tours:
In most cases, special dietary requirements were well provided for, but on one stop on the Historic Centre Tour meat-eaters had a wild boar stew & the vegetarian alternative was a salad of mixed leaves, which felt like a rough deal for the veggies. For me, that stop could have been skipped altogether as we had more than enough food throughout the day, and exotic meats (after trying crickets and various creepy crawly bugs) didn’t feel particularly Mexican, although perhaps the point was to show that Mexico has food you wouldn’t expect.
On the Roma Tour, for me the food was a little hit & miss. The first stop was incredible, and in all honesty set the bar very high, so after that nothing was quite as good! I love fish & seafood, and the fish taco at Tres Galeones was incredible. We then moved on to try tamales, which aren’t my favourite food, but are typical in Mexico, and the Oaxacan tlayuda was interesting to try as I’d never had anything like that, but wasn’t that flavourful as other foods & a little dry for my taste.
In creating any food tour, it is difficult to find a balance between cultural importance and food quality – and demonstrating the different dishes that are available, that perhaps European or North American palates aren’t used to. We kept away from the ‘usual’ tacos, but perhaps a sly stop at a street food vendor for an ‘al pastor’ taco wouldn’t have been a bad thing – they are delicious and a typical Mexican food after all.
I thought the mezcal was important to try – as an integral part of the culture – and from the beer drinkers in the group I gather the craft beer was very good, but with my sweet tooth I would have definitely preferred a dessert stop over a coffee. Of course, you can’t please everyone, and I think I’m in the minority for not drinking beer or coffee (or mezcal)! The beer and coffee stops also meant we ate less food than the Historic Centre tour, so I wasn’t as full as I had been for the other tour. Others who were on the tour though said the portions were too large, so I suppose it depends on your appetite!
So really, which is the best food tour in Mexico City?
Overall, I enjoyed both of the tours, but the Historic Centre one was my favourite. Keeping everyone happy is not an easy task, but you can see from Sabores Mexico’s Tripadvisor reviews they are doing a pretty good job! Compared to other food tours, Sabores Mexico offer excellent value for money, and their talented guides offer interesting insights into the culture & history of Mexico. If you are looking for a food tour in Mexico City, Sabores Mexico is definitely a great choice!
How to Book with Sabores Mexico:
For more information, visit the Sabores Mexico website which has full details about each tour, and the prices.
Currently, it costs $50 USD per person for the Roma Norte Tour (plus taxes) which last for 3.5 hours, visits 7 places and samples 12 tastings
The Historic Centre tour costs $60 USD (plus taxes), lasts for 4.5 hours, visiting 8 places and samples 12 tastings.
Where to Stay in Mexico City
I stayed in Hostel Home, and loved it! Hostel Home is in the Roma Norte (North Roma) area of Mexico City, and is close to tons of restaurants and bars, but on a quiet safe street.
If you prefer to stay in a hotel, I highly recommend Chaya B & B Boutique hotel, which has lovely comfy beds and a beautiful rooftop terrace with hammocks. It is in the Centro Historico, close to the Palacio de Bellas Artes.
Or check the options on Airbnb. If you have never used Airbnb before, use this link to sign up & get up to $40 credit to use on your first trip! Read more about the Airbnb first time discount code or click below for your Airbnb coupon.
Have you taken a food tour in Mexico City? What was your favourite dish? I’d love to hear your thoughts, please leave your comments below.
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Thank you to Sabores Mexico for inviting me on their food tours. Both tours I attended were complimentary, but as always all views are my own.
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Tales of a Backpacker is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. I only recommend goods and services I believe are useful and reliable.Last updated: November 29, 2018