She came, she baked, she conquered
Claim to fame: Latin America’s Best Female Chef 2014, reigning over a domaine of seasonal ingredients
Reason to go: A Mexican-Mediterranean culinary entente
To look out for: A well-curated wine list, boasting affordable Mexican labels and a thoughtful selection of European dittos
Mexico City’s queen of bread, Chef Elena Reygadas, conquered the capital with top-notch sandwiches, swoon-worthy, sweet guava rolls and the finest focaccia this side of Florence. Her entrée to the culinary court started with a couple of panaderias that spawned Rosetta, a buzzy crown jewel illuminating the Roma neighborhood with its stylish, feminine townhouse-setting. This flavorific palazzo ducale has a certain Italian-Mediterranean flair, yet it’s definitely Mexican in spirit.
Holding court at Rosetta, Reygadas keeps the guests coming back for the ever-changing menu that bows to seasonality and a touch of refined, French technique. Freshness is her main lady in waiting; her sensitivity to simple, crisp ingredients shines in dishes such as the hugely popular fennel salad with grapefruit and pomegranate, and the endive salad with beets, orange, pine nuts, and pink peppercorn. Ethereal, hand-made pastas are silky crowd-pleasers; Italian sausage tagliatelle with chili and tagliolini with chiton, zucchini, and bottarga. On the more imperious side: beef tongue with parsley sauce and capers. Mas Mexicano: chicatana ant mole with cucumber and greens, and roasted figs with hoja santa ice cream for dessert.
Make no mistake though, there’s nothing bourgeois about Rosetta, her greatness lies in a restrained, sophisticated and elegant simplicity. The ambience is easy-going and unfussy, a phenomenon that can only be attributed to HRH Reygadas’ charms.