Some of the best food, not to mention the best tacos, I’ve ever eaten while traveling in Mexico was in La Paz, Baja California Sur. La Paz, or LP for short, is located on the eastern side of the Baja peninsula. The proximity to the the Sea of Cortez makes for super fresh seafood. But it wasn’t just the seafood that was outstanding. Breakfast, pizza and even barbecue, yes barbecue in Baja, were just a few of the amazing things I ate while I was there. Here are a few of my favorites and my suggestions about where to eat in La Paz.
I’m a huge breakfast fan and can eat it at almost anytime of the day. So when someone recommends a good breakfast place, I have pretty high expectations. Maria California was recommended by a friend who lived in La Paz, as one of his favorite places. It turned out to be one my favorite places too. So much so, I went a couple of times while I was there.
The restaurant is the cutest, eclectically decorated, Palapa style restaurant, that serves really fresh food. Their fresh squeezed “salva vida” green juice was my favorite out of a huge list of house made juices. I also had a dish I had never tried before, rajas con crema. Rajas are strips of roasted poblano peppers cooked with onions and then simmered with cream. It might not sound like what you want for breakfast but trust me, it was delicious with eggs and refried beans.
Also on the menu was a “lechero”. A coffee style from Veracruz. The waiter brings your black coffee and adds it to a tall glass. He then holds a kettle with steamed milk high above the glass and pours it into the coffee. The action of pouring the steamed milk into the coffee causes a frothy mixture. It was perfect!
If you are looking for something a little quicker and on the go, try Big Sur Coffee. I liked them right away, before I even tasted the coffee, mostly because of the colorful street art outside and inside the shop. The coffee and the service was as good as I had hoped. More than just coffee, they serve sweets, pastries, muffins, sandwiches and beer.
A great place to just hang out, eat a late lunch (or even dinner) is Bismarkcito. Since the last time I was in La Paz, they added a huge outside addition, with a bar and open air seating. The restaurant is right across the street from the Malecon, so it’s a great place to beat the heat, have a margarita or two and people watch. They have this unique salsa they serve with their chips that I haven’t ever had anywhere else and dream about when I’m home. You can get that fresh seafood I mentioned before right here. It’s one of the oldest and best places to eat in La Paz.
At night the Malecon comes alive with live music and plenty of entertainment. There is also literally any kind of food you want in just a few blocks. At The Beer Garden, I listened to Spanish rock and ate nachos. Service was a little slow but the music was great. I enjoyed it a lot and would definitely go back. Edit: I have heard the Beer Garden is closed but have not confirmed this yet.
A few blocks from the Malecon is J&R Ribs. As a self proclaimed connoisseur of barbecue, I’ll admit I wasn’t expecting much but the ribs were delicious. Even the sides, macaroni and cheese and slaw, would make any southern cook proud.
If you are looking for something a little more upscale, head out of town to Costa Baja. It’s a resort, spa and marina located about ten minutes from downtown La Paz. You can take a taxi or Uber there. It’s worth going just to eat at their restaurants and see the boats in the marina.
Steinbeck’s, one the restaurants, named after, you guessed it, John Steinbeck, the author who wrote “The Pearl”. The book is set in La Paz. Beautifully decorated in a gorgeous setting, they serve fresh seafood, steak and have an extensive wine list.
Another option at Costa Baja is Azul Marino. A little more casual with outdoor seating, they also serve seafood. If you have the opportunity to go fishing while in La Paz, and you should, they will prepare your catch for you, anyway you like. Our fresh caught mahi mahi was grilled and served with pasta. It was hands down one of the best meals I’ve ever had. They also serve a good pizza and salad.
Save room for dessert. They are some great ice cream shops thru out LP. One of my favorites is Giulietta y Romeo Heladeria. Grab a cone or an espresso, stroll down the Malecon and watch the sunset. You’ll see why the saying in LP is no bad days.
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