El Hechizo, best restaurant in Tulum

Simple decoration, the food is what really matters
Simple decoration, the food is what really matters

El Hechizo es the best and most sophisticated restaurant in Tulum. Its chef and owner, Stefan Schober is a highly professional chef, with a long experience as chef of the Ritz Carlton hotel chain. From Austrian parents, the mexican Schober met her wife when she was in charge of the Ritz Carlton Singapore patisserie. Ying-Hui Thai Low (Hui) now is the pastry chef of El Hechizo, and the responsible of the best dessert I ever had (not having sweet teeth): Dark Chocolate Fondant Torte with Coconut IceCream and Passion Fruit Coulis.

After going through the menu, we were too tempted by what we found in the upper section, we had two appetizers and a main. The home made tagliatelli with black truffle oil was just perfect. The truffle flavor densely but finely integrated in a creamy sauce. The sea scallops with prosciutto envoltini were also great, specially the scallops, really fresh and with the right texture (the tricky part of cooking scallops).

Our pick of main was the lobster tail on potato gnocchi, another great dish. Amazingly, we ended up fighting for the perfect gnocchi instead of the lobster mini-chops.

The wine list was disappointing, just 6-7 reds, four of them Chilean. As Stefan explained (he presents and explains the menu to every table), it is really tough to have and properly maintain wines in Tulum. It is very usually to find rotten wines even at the best restaurants, because of the heat. So Stefan’s decision to stick to the very few rotating wines he knows are well preserved may seem the right one. Maybe you should bring your own grand vin (there is a good La Europea wine store at Playa del Carmen, 40 miles away) to try to match the quality of the perfect food.

HECTOR ROBERTO L HOPITAL

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