Late Night Eats in Mexico: Pastor to Die For
You guys. Look. Look at that plate of deliciousness!
Okay, let me take a step back. At the end of the week I’m headed to Tulum (which, in case you didn’t know, is a little beach town on the Caribbean coast of Mexico, about a 90 minute drive south of Cancun). I’ve never been to Tulum before, but I’ve heard it’s a wonderland of beautiful beaches & cenotes, Mayan ruins, bohemian vibes, and great food. And yes, when I’m back later this month, I’ll be sure to give you a full report, especially on the food aspect!
While Tulum will be a new travel experience for me, I do know one thing I plan on eating a TON of while I’m there: pastor tacos. Thanks to my visit to San Miguel de Allende (a gorgeous town in central Mexico, south of Mexico City) last year, I now realize how wondrous true pastor really can be. Pastor is a big late-night draw in certain parts of Mexico, and it’s so much better than the late-night hot dogs we’re used to in the USA. And sure, I’ve had plenty of al pastor here in Texas, but it is NOT THE SAME as the succulent, spicy, rich meat you find in Mexico.
The best pastor in San Miguel de Allende was at a little taco cart called Andy’s, which doesn’t open until after dark, so we’re talking late night treat only. And when I say taco cart, I mean taco cart. There’s a few little counter seats where you can get a glimpse of the action, but otherwise it’s standing room only. You walk up, order what kind of tacos you want and how many (trust me, never stop at just one) and then wait for your order to be ready and served up to you on a plastic plate covered in… more plastic.
So let’s talk about the composition of these tacos. The pork revolves around on a giant upright spit (think similar to a traditional kebap or gyro). The pork is sliced directly off the spit, fried up on the flat-top with gooey white cheese, garnished with traditional toppings (onion, cilantro, spicy salsa). You can also get pineapple or no pineapple. Some people have an aversion to adding the fruit, but I love it. You can see it roasting there above the pastor itself.
Just look at this glorious messiness… yes.
These pastor tacos are traditionally served on small corn tortillas, but you can also get “gringo” style which is basically the same exact taco, just served on a big flour tortilla. You really can’t go wrong either way! If you’re ever in San Miguel de Allende, Andy’s is definitely the place to hit up… they don’t have a website that I can find, but if you ask a local, they should be able to help you out. And as far as the best pastor in Tulum… well, I’ll let you know sometime in March!