Saturday, May 10, 2008
A “tabano” is a small biting insect common here on the beach in the spring and summer months. As such, it is a cute but unfit name for this lovely and charming roadside garden restaurant on the other side of the beach road. Historically, this side of the beach road has had very little to offer in terms of food and entertainment. Recently opened, this eclectic and open air restaurant challenges beach combers to see for themselves that that there is life on the jungle side of the road.
The Guineapigs stopped in for a drink but ended up staying for dinner. El Tabano is so brand spanking new that the liquor license still has not arrived so tea it was. They have a nice selection and the non alcoholic evening was actually welcomed. The chalk board menu offers a wide selection of mouth watering dishes. The Guineapigs shared a mango and jicama salad with sesame seed soy and honey dressing. 3 little piggies for that! One Guinea pig ordered fish filet in its own broth. The fish was very fresh, refreshing and clean. It was so healthy and light the Guineapigs considered adding a little more seasoning for taste. 1.5 little pigs for that entre. Another Guineapig tried Chile Relleno, Poblano chile filled with chicken and cheese. No need to describe....we just oinked three times and what one piggey couldn’t finish, the other was happy to snort.
Service? Although very slow it was very attentive and heart warming, 2 and a half pigs for that one. The generator was out that night so the entire garden, including the kitchen, was lit up with candles. Poor little chef-lady in the kitchen could hardly see what she was stirring in the pot. But all the candles made the whole place look even more like a magic garden, romantic enough for flirtatious conversations and cozy enough for a group of friends to stay a while. And the stars added that glimmer of light that makes Tulum evenings so special. All the dishes are served in unique vintage plates and silverware that reminds you of your grandma's kitchen.
Overall the Guineapigs added up 2.5 little piggies for this whimsical new hang. And don't worry there were none of those tabanos when we dined there. Although you would be wise to bring mosquito repellent there with you. Who knows when those, orange horse flies that sting like bees, might make an appearance.