To really get to know a place, you have to eat the food. The food always gives you an indication of what kind of place you are. Sometimes you’re lucky with the food and sometimes you’re eating sugar packed red velvet pancakes in the name of Vegas. In Tulum you get the best of the best. The town of Tulum is located on the Mayan Riveria can only be described as an Old Mexican world that is now accepting dates from international lovers from Brooklyn and Europe. From the beach side haunts, to the jungle oasis, to the pueblo’s local flavor when you eat in Tulum you are feeding your soul.
Hartwood is what Legends are made of. The Restaurant which opened house in 2010 is now the must get into spot in town. The reservation for this place is a hot ticket item and can really only be acquired by standing in line in the early afternoon to secure a spot. Do I like waiting for restaurants with no guaranteed of getting in? No. Did I stand in line for this place? You betcha I did. Located on the jungle side of the road next to the sea the Hartwood is like dining inside a dream. The staff is beautiful in that bohemian way, the ascetic is perfection, and the food….well the food is everything that is right with the world, it is imaginative, LOCAL, and beyond delicious. I headed to the Hartwood with my two new pals and we literally ordered everything on the menu and some yummy habanero margs.
We each selected pretty different orders and were able to try each others foods, needless to say I love these gals. I started off with the Papaya Empandas, which we’re essentially a pastry filled with papaya and deliciousness and served with a fruit like salad. My new pal Jen started off with the Ceviche which was tasty and had the right amount “season”, our even newer pal Kat went for the Ensalada de Rubia which was essentially an entire grilled fish on top of a fruit salad// this thing could have been an entire meal. For our main courses Jen opted for a Filet Fish char grilled and accompanied with a salad and some kind of tarter sauce. While everything on the menu sounded absolutely delicious and Jens fish was gran the Platillo de Pulpo was calling my name. The dish which is quite legendary I had not only read about but had heard from people in line was the thing to try. To all those people standing in line with me that day: THANK YOU. This Octopus plate is essentially one of the greatest culinary treats of my entire life. The entire Octopus that is presented to you is perfectly seasoned and cooked over a char. It is tender, it is tasty, it is something my heart is yearning for. Now because we hadn’t already had enough food we also got the three sides: the roasted giant beet, roasted plantain, and roasted sweet potato….hello carbs. The plantain though…..was dessert and it was amazing. Overall every single bite was worth it. WORTH IT.