he colorful flavors of Mexico come into focus at The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun as it immerses us in a gastronomic exploration of the region in a stylish fashion, of course and closer than ever. The iconic resort has curated a culinary experience led by Chef Mara Barba from the hotel’s Culinary Center.
Check in and check out the “True Flavors of Cancun”. It is a unique experience that envelops guests in the food culture of the region, while they participate in the process, seeing how a highly-experienced chef sources the ingredients that inspire recipes and create delicious dishes, all from the markets and local stores.
The intimate tour lasts all day, and can accommodate up to 8 people in private transportation, accompanied by Chef Mara. Prior to departure, guests are presented with typical Mexican sweets as well as aprons before meeting in the lobby, to later enjoy a Mexican breakfast with traditional sweet bread, fresh fruit and mimosas. The small group leaves the hotel to the chef’s favorite market. The group walks through colorful and rustic markets where all their senses will be put to the test. From spice vendors to fresh produce and butchers in small stands, guests can smell, touch and feel food while Chef explains the nuances that make each ingredient unique and selects the elements to cook a private meal with guests. Temptation abounds.
Throughout the day, guests can savor a variety of local culinary delights. The opportunity to taste authentic Yucatecan snacks in a local “inn” is one way the tour satiates along the way. Afterwards, there’s a visit to a grocery store to cool off with a beer. There’s a craft market stop along the way as well. Local products, drink fresh coconut water and visit a tortillería where corn tortillas are produced are all part of the journey. After a final stop with a supplier specializing in tequilas, mezcal and local wines, the group returns to the hotel.
Back at the Culinary Center, Chef Barba will use the ingredients they have just purchased to prepare an exquisite dinner. If guests wish to participate, in the style of a cooking class, Barba will instruct them to help prepare the food. If you’d rather sip wine and observe, Chef Barba adapts to that and any preference, dietary restriction or allergy that the guests may have.
The menu of “True Flavors of Cancun” culinary experience includes an avocado margarita, lime soup, red tikini xic snapper, cheese stuffed with beef and Edam ball cheese; chicken seasoned with pepper and chickpeas, tomato, chopped onion, vinegar and pork stock; and for dessert chocolate tamale and mamey ice cream. This is a Cancun experience that can only be executed this well by the brand known for quality and excellence, The Ritz Carlton.