This post began with a phone call to Tacos Nayarit to ask if I could photograph and share the recipe for El Alejo Mezcal …. the watermelon and jalapeno muddled margarita that transports people in landlocked Durango to a Nayarit beach …. with a cool ocean breeze kissing your face as you wiggle your toes in the sand in sheer happiness…… sip sip ….. pass the suntan lotion …. oh isn’t life just wonderful.
Obviously this is not a photo of the drink …… I’ll get to this sensational steaming volcano of fabulousness in a sec …..
Nayarit is newly remodeled, and located less than a mile north of historic Downtown Durango. Mr.D and I have become regulars for lunches and after work rendezvous. One of our favorite things about the new design is the blue lit bar.
This is J.C., co-owner and drink master. First, he very kindly (on a busy Sunday afternoon) demonstrated the making of El Alejo Mezcal…… invented by Alex who is the son of the other owner, Mike.
Fresh slices of watermelon, rind removed……
1/4 inch slice of jalapeno, seeds removed. So you get only a hint of pepper heat.
Muddled for at least one minute in a cocktail shaker.
Para todo mal, mezcal, y para todo bien también. (For every ill, mezcal, and for everything good, too.)
Only freshly squeezed lime juice.
Then he added ice, Patron citron, and triple sec……
…..for a second muddling to break down the ice and create a slushie consistency.
Glass rimmed with chile lime salt.
I know…..you want to jump right into that fishbowl glass and take a swim. Me, too. The fruity fresh ingredients mask the alcohol taste …. sweet but not too sweet.
Just as I took this photo we heard a loud sizzling coming from the kitchen …… more sizzle than a fajita …. a big smoky ZSZSZSZSZSZSZSZ that caught everyone’s attention.
The Molcajete Mexicano
Dinner and a show in a volcanic rock bowl overflowing with seasoned grilled steak, chicken, shrimp, chiles and pork slices. Filled with ….. ready for this? ….. okay here goes …..
Molten sauce with bubbling cheese, grilled tilapia, cactus, chorizo sausage, more plump grilled shrimp, more pork, more cheese.
It bubbled for almost an hour… we timed it. Which is why we’ve nicknamed it The Volcano. With roasted jalapeno flower garnish.
This is the kind of dish I think of when people come to visit and ask “Is there anything different you like to order around here? Something fun?” Yep, and it’s entertaining and interactive …. because you get to hand select what you want, scoop from the gooey savory spicy cheesy yummy center and roll it all in a fresh flour or corn tortilla.
It has some spice, and pairs well with the sweet cool El Alejo Mezcal.
This is J.C.’s invention, another Nayarit specialty cocktail. With reposado tequila, triple sec, curacao, fresh orange and lime juice, and a baby bottle of Corona. Fresh (sorry….. the word fresh keeps coming up, it’s unavoidable at Nayarit) light, sweet, with a mellowness from the beer. This pairs well with ….
Another moment when you sit back in your chair, close your eyes ….. has anyone seen my beach sandals? ….. let’s go wade in the Riviera Nayarita …. surf’s up!
Plump oysters in their briny liquor, with shrimp ceviche, lime, cucumbers, cilantro, onions, tomato and jalapenos. This is a terrific platter to share with friends. Or…… on a date…. oysters… I’ll say no more.
Many thanks to J.C. and everyone at Nayarit. And for sharing your recipe.
I’d Order That again…..
Tacos Nayarit Mexican Cuisine
2525 Main Avenue
Durango, CO 81301
Phone 970 385 1595