Migrante’s Courageous Menu is a Must-Try At El Surf Club

Kathleen Horner

Celebrating the ancient and evolving flavors of Mexican gastronomy, Mexico City’s acclaimed Migrante Restaurant has come to El Surf Club for a limited engagement until December 10. Don’t miss it.

The menu includes favorites like fresh oysters and yellow-tail ceviche, slow-roasted beef and pork ribs, but each dish is elevated and transforming. Here’s a sampling to tease your appetite. As an appetizer, order the oysters right away. Delicate, chilled oysters are served with a few pearls of salmon caviar (Ikura), droplets of XO Sauce (umami-rich and spicy seafood sauce), a splash of tangerine, a bit of crunch from micro-diced jicama, and lemongrass foam. The blend
of flavors and textures is magical.

One of many creative cocktails, the Higgye paired beautifully with the oysters: smoky Creyente Espadín Mezcal with a splash of Chambord, fresh orange juice, and a pistachio salt rim. Also on the starters menu is a brilliant Korean-style green curry ceviche with Kampachi (yellow-tail), in a marinade of coconut milk, cilantro, cucumber, a bit of heat from Chaya sauce, and a very light drizzle of mint oil.

Socarrat is the essential layer of crispy crunchy toasted rice at the bottom of the pan when paella is perfectly cooked. [Migrante] interprets the dish with tender shrimp over a bright red piquillo pepper emulsion. The rice is caramelized, toasty, nutty perfection. Melty Dry Noodle With Beef Cheek is a soulful skillet of cut vermicelli noodles cooked in pomodoro sauce and topped with a light sprinkling of cotija cheese. The beef is slow-cooked and tender. Chunks of creamy avocado, toasted guajillo chile shreds, cilantro, and chicharrónes—fried pork rind, charred and torn. Squeeze the grilled lemon over the hot skillet
and enjoy.

Chaya (spinach tree) is also called the Mexican miracle plant; its leaves are antioxidant-rich. As a main course, you’ll find it in a mini-tamale (tamalito) served under a green mole (big flavors) and topped with wood-fired grilled pork ribs. No need for a knife. If there is room for dessert, the Chocometate Cake is a luxurious dish that meets all of one’s chocolate needs and then some. Made from stone-ground (metate) Oaxacan chocolate, layers of dense and moist cake are filled with chocolate mousse, topped with a smooth ganache and a sprinkling of chocolate powder. What truly makes the dish, however, is the balance between that not-too-sweet cake, the accompanying halved-and-honeyed apricot, and the dollop of berry ice cream.

Migrante Restaurant at El Surf Club is beautifully executed by Chef Martinez and his culinary staff, and served graciously. The setting offers lazy afternoons and beachy sunsets. It’s a perfect place to indulge and enjoy a rich diversity of Mexican flavors, original and evolving, courageous and foolishly lavish.

Buen Provecho!