Mexico City, Mexico
What makes it special: Celebrity chef Enrique Olvera is credited with proving that rustic Mexican flavours deserve as much attention as any other haute cuisine in the world. And Pujol has been his pedestal to make that point via a tasting menu of refined and elegant plates built from indigenous ingredients that pay tribute to Mexico’s rich culinary history. This year, his vision is brilliantly justified as he wins the award for The Best Restaurant in North America 2019.
A new home: In 2017, Olvera relocated his 17-year-old Polanco restaurant to a stunning, mid-century home within the same neighbourhood, building a comfortable space that’s aglow in natural light. Beyond expansive windows, the new Pujol involves a wood-burning oven, terrazzo floors and a long dining bar that offers a separate taco tasting menu.
Most famous dishes: While Pujol’s menu changes seasonally, the restaurant’s signature Mole Madre, Mole Nuevo will always grace the menu. Think a perfect circle of fresh mole surrounded by a larger ring of mole that’s aged for more than 1,500 days, beside a basket of warm tortillas – a taste of Mexico’s past.
Other projects: Olvera commands not one but two dining engagements on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Cosme, the modern Mexican restaurant in New York that he opened in 2014, made its debut onto the list in 2017 and this year has risen to No.23 under the stewardship of The World’s Best Female Chef 2019, Daniela Soto-Innes.