Monday, November 16, 2009

GILMAR – Puerto Vallarta

Gilmar is located in Zona Romantica on Madero (2 streets before crossing the Rio Cuale into el centro). This area of Vallarta is the older, charming Puerto Vallarta. Zona Romantica is Vallarta's most energized neighborhood with the south side beach, restaurants, bars, lounges and beach side cafes.

Gilmar is a traditional, casual Mexican restaurant serving great food since 1979. At this simply decorated, comfortable eatery, the décor is not the focus – the food is!

For my starter, I had the made-to-order salsa prepared table side. Roberto was my sexy, witty server and “salsa chef.” His huge smile would melt even the chilliest of diners. Roberto created an incredible salsa from roasted tomatoes, fresh garlic cloves, white onion, cilantro, and roasted Serrano chilies. Based on my preferences and using a stone bowl, he mashed and blended the perfect salsa. A warm basket of homemade tortilla chips arrived from the kitchen just as he finished his creation. The secret to a great salsa is first roasting the vegetables & Gilmar knocks it out of the park. Delicious!

For dinner, I chose the Arrachera a la Parrilla (approx $9US) – a thin cut of flank or skirt steak rubbed with crushed garlic, oil, and coarse salt. The steak generally marinates for a minimum of 30 minutes & then it’s on to the grill. I believe Roberto told me Gilmar’s marinates the meat overnight. Prior to serving, the steak is drizzled with lime juice. Few spices, but huge flavor. The steak platter arrives with warm tortillas and 3 fantastic sides including grilled white onions, guacamole and refried beans... the perfect “foursome”.

Tonight, I was in the mood for dessert. I could not resist the Fried Ice Cream. The baseball size ball of vanilla ice cream is first dipped into foamy egg whites and then rolled in a combination of brown sugar, cinnamon and crushed “cornflake-like” cereal. It is deep fried for approximately 10 seconds creating a sweet, crisp blanket. The ice cream ball rests on a strawberry puree and is generously drizzled with a warm, dark chocolate sauce. The warm crust with the cool, creamy inside is out of this world.

An amazing meal at a fantastic price. I can honestly say I will be returning in January!

Mmm… Mmm…


$ 10

$$ 20
$$$ 30
$$$$ 40+

+ Stop bothering me!
++ Anyone here?
+++ Stopped when in the area.
++++ As needed and friendly.
+++++ Invisibly perfect!

✦ “One visit too many!”
✦✦ “Convince me!”
✦✦✦ “I’ll be back!”
✦✦✦✦ “Same table next week!”

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