The Bajio. Part One

Culinary tours is and remains our principal activity as a promoter of Mexican cuisine: showing, sharing and disseminating the history behind each dish that is presumed to be authentic and traditional. After 5 years of doing it, we feel confident in the knowledge that we have surprised many, but also when the challenge is to do with expert journalists who have traveled to many countries and have visited Mexico several times, it is all a learning experience even for ourselves, and let me tell you we do not get tired of doing it again and again.

Mexico City view from Westin Santa Fe

The group was made of women and men of very different ages, not to mention the interests of each. Some traveled wanting to know more from our kitchen, others to have information on luxury hotels and spas, and there was a chef that his priority was to record material for his TV show. So, each of them sent their requests for this experience. It was not easy but we were sure we were going to achieve success in this trip, we had a commitment with Aeromexico, who organize them and invite them, as well with the Mexico Tourism Board that recommended us as experts in the field.

We travelled in Aeromexico and our flight from New York to Mexico City is as comfortable as first class despite the fact we were travelling in coach, this I tell you because is important to note that many international airlines, and especially in the United States, had make a cut in services on board, from blankets and pillows to charging fees for food and beverages. Here we had a warm breakfast, a blanket and pillow and, on landing, we were received with beverages as a welcome to Mexico.

Selecting the route it was complicated, but, at the end, we are sure we made the best decision because the idea was to show Mexico is not only rich in culture, history and cuisine, we also wanted to break preconceived ideas on how the media portray us as an unsafe country with armed conflicts in each state. We prove is not the case and that contrary to what is published, Mexico today remains one of the most fun travel destinations. The route we chose: Viceregal Mexico and its wines.

Thus began our journey and what could be better than a reception dinner at Paxia Santa Fe by  Daniel Ovadia, to where we went after doing our check-in at the Westin Santa Fe. They opened us their doors and became our first host of this important journey. I will tell you all about Westin on a later article. In Paxia, Chiapas tasting menu was the best way to show a Mexico full of rich aroma and flavor. Everyone was absolutely surprised and very eager to see who could outdo the first meeting with our cuisine.

How many times have you stayed at a luxury hotel located right in front of your house? We’ve never done it before until this time that Westin Santa Fe booked us a room as group responsible. I can say that the next time I get a weekend off, I will only have to cross the street and enjoy that bed that many of our guest journalists described as “being in heaven!”

The rooms are impeccably decorated with those amenities I love to have and collect and that bed still is in my mind as an idea of asking them specifications so I can have one in my own bedroom. The room service is very attentive and especially fast, which is appreciated when you are between just going to bed, or getting that sandwich that will make you sleep with a smile on your face.

We have to come again sometime to Westin, as they also have a spa which we could only visit quickly. It is clear they are well equipped and the juice bar is very ad-hoc for an after-treatment treat.

So we said goodbye to a Mexico City that gave us the opportunity to show a cosmopolitan, modern and elegant Mexico City, as all the best cities in the world and we headed to the city of Santiago de Queretaro for the surprises that awaited us to happen.

About Carlos Dragonné

Pues en resumen puedo decirles que soy escritor y periodista, además de cineasta de profesión y cocinero por afición. Egresado de la Universidad del Cine AMCI, Campus Ciudad de México y director de, hasta el día de hoy, poco más de 20 cortometrajes, entre ellos "Miedo", "De banquetas y ausentes", "Rear View" y "Silencios Rotos", además de producir "Oliver y las Moscas", "Andrés ha Muerto" y "La Mancha". Soy, también, analista político. Escribo desde hace 8 años en Milenio Diario. Actualmente me pueden encontrar los domingos en la sección de opinión. Tengo un libro de poemas por publicarse, además de haber participado en "Amates 19", una antología poética de Amarillo Editores y ya estoy preparando la edición de lo que será mi segundo libro. Ya los mantendremos informados. Hay tres cosas que me pueden apasionar al exceso. Obvio, dos de ellas son las que puse arriba (escritor y cineasta), pero la tercera es la cocina. Ustedes denme una cocina en la cual expresar mis ideas y les garantizo que disfrutarán lo que de ahí salga.
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