Mexico City: It’s south of the border’s version of New York. The party starts late and ends early… the next day, that is. Here are our 10 current and perennial favorites in el D.F.
*All facts are accurate as of this posting. As always, check before you go!
10. Mama Rumba
The perennial favorite for live Cuban timba and salsa and 100% Latin music, including cumbia, Mama Rumba is so popular that as the night wears on it becomes impossible to walk—much less dance—in this tight, two-floor spot in the hot neighborhood of Colonia Roma.
If you decide to stay on the first floor with music, take care; when the crowd gets tight on the 2nd floor balcony, the possibility of a drink falling over the railing and onto your head is not at all remote. Skip the “famous” mojitos here, which are as overpriced as they are overly sweet. Best for the 20’s crowd.
Address: Queretaro #230 in Colonia Roma
$80 peso cover (approx. $8 USD).
For what it’s worth, Manguu markets itself as a “Latin bar” and “minimalist lounge,” but the best thing to recommend it is its martini list; Manguu has one of the most creative—and affordable—drink lists in the city. The scene is laid back, good for small groups of friends, and perfect for before or after dinner drinks en route to somewhere else.
Address: Avenida de la Revolucion #1579, Colonia San Angel
No cover charge.
8. Condesa df
Condesa df is a hip boutique hotel in the neighborhood of Condesa, and it’s best for a laid-back romantic evening. The rooftop bar offers an amazing panoramic view of the city at night, all from your cozy couple’s lounger, complete with a blanket and a warming heat lamp. The bar also serves sushi and Japanese-inspired small plates.
My favorite is the homemade Ramen noodle soup served with tempura. There’s a dimly lit bar in the interior patio, too; both bars have inventive drink lists.
Address: Avenida Veracruz #102, Colonia Condesa
No cover charge.
7. Casa Lamm
Casa Lamm is a lot of things to a lot of people—by day it’s a cultural center, but by night, it’s a bar and restaurant open to the public. A large and welcoming modern space, the bar has a good selection of drinks and cigars, and boasts live music on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, nights when few bars offer the same.
As with Manguu and Condesa df, Casa Lamm is a great place for drinks if you’re a 20 or 30 something hipster en route from one place to another.
Address: Avenida Alvaro Obregon #99, Colonia Roma
No cover charge.
6. La Nueva Flor del Son
You’d be likely to pass this unassuming bar-restaurant in the neighborhood of Colonia Roma without a second glance if you didn’t know it has some of the BEST live music in all of Mexico City. Although the drinks aren’t particularly good and are terribly overpriced, the music at La Nueva Flor del Son compensates for that, as does the attentive service. La Nueva Flor is famous for its Cuban music.
While it caters to a crowd of adults mainly 40 and over, don’t be fooled– the variety of musical groups is impressive and so is the dancing. If you want to have a true local experience, this is the place for you. Music starts early (5 PM) and keeps going until 1 or 2.
Address: Puebla #52, Colonia Roma
No cover, but three drink per person minimum.
5. El Rincon Cubano
Why so many Cuban places on this list? Because Chilangos (Mexico City residents) love Cuban music and Cuban dancing. El Rincon Cubano looks like it’s lived its glory days, but trust us, they’re not over yet. Don’t show up before 11:00 PM. Thursdays are 2 for 1 beer and mojito nights; Sunday evenings always find Cuban dancers showing off their moves.
Address: Insurgentes Sur #300
Cover: $70 pesos (approx. $7 USD) on Thursdays and Fridays; $50 pesos (approx. $5 USD) on Sundays.
Like Condesa df, Area, is a rooftop hotel bar with stunning city views, great (if pricey) drinks, and a see-and-be-seen scene.
Address: Presidente Masaryk #201, Colonia Polanco
3. La Casa de las Sirenas
146 different kinds of tequila. You’re in Mexico. Enough said.
Address: Guatemala #32, Centro Historico
Asia in Mexico City. Cinnabar offers drinks you’d be hard pressed to find elsewhere in the city—lychee martinis, for one. The bar also serves fusion Vietnamese and Chinese food so you won’t go hungry.
Address: Nuevo Leon #67, Colonia Condesa
1. El Comillo
A bar in my neighborhood where DJs spin everything from techno to acid and Latin jazz. El Colmillo looks like a house from the outside, so it’s easy to miss—but just look for the velvet rope and the beefy bouncer.
Address: Versalles #52, Colonia Reforma
Cover varies depending on the day.
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