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Neighborhood Crush: La Roma, Mexico City

Neighborhood Crush: La Roma, Mexico City

With mud-season creeping in and spring break in full swing, we're taking opportunity to escape (even if only in a daydream) to somewhere warmer, to keep spirits high until spring. 

Our destination: La Roma neighborhood in Mexico City. Our objective: 24 hours of coffee, food and confections. 

First Stop: Coffee at Almanegra.

Almanegra, meaning black soul, specializes in serving beans from Mexican micro-roasters. Here, it's all about the coffee. Their beans are light and fruit-forward, providing the perfect backbone for your coffee preparation of choice. Almanegra offers everything from cold brew to classic espresso to a perfect pour-over, served up in a very well-designed to-go cup.

With coffee in hand, we journey to Panadería Rosetta.

A Roma favorite for locals and visitors alike, Panadería Rosetta has a carry-out pastry case brimming with Mexican breads and danishes, traditional with a twist. The Guava and Cheese Danish is our personal favorite and an ideal example of how young chefs in the city are applying classical techniques infused with local ingredients. If you have more time to linger, saddle up to the diner-style counter where lucky patrons can order delicious prepared breakfast and lunch dishes and take in the La Roma scene. 

Fun fact: Mexico City has the world's second largest number of Museums (behind Paris). There is also a bustling gallery scene. A few of our La Roma favorites: OMR, Proyectosmonclova and Machete.

After gallery hopping, we take to the streets for lunch.

On the corner of Colima and Orizaba, La Biera is our top pick for street tacos in Mexico City. When it comes to street food our rule of thumb is: 1) is there a line? and 2) is the line filled with locals? If the answer to both of these questions is yes, you're likely good to go. Tacos from La Biera come with consume gratis - bringing your lunch bill to around $1.

La Roma is also famous for its boutique shopping. A few neighborhood gems: Tuza and Zii Ropa (by appointment only).

When it's time for an afternoon pick me up, head to El Moro.

El Moro has been around since 1935, and is the king of the classic Mexican churro. A churro is fried extruded dough tossed in cinnamon and sugar. Dipping sauces (optional) include Mexican chocolate, cajeta (goat's milk caramel) and condensed milk. Though coffee is on the menu, the drink to get here is Mexican or Spanish hot chocolate. Order churro + hot chocolate "combo" and be well satiated.  

Photo: Moritz Bernouilly

Photo: Stacy Markow

Finish with drinks and dinner at Meroma.

This restaurant feels close to home. One of Persephone's former pastry chefs, Mercedes, and her husband Rodney opened Meroma in 2017. Meroma's concept is simple and spot on: contemporary cuisine, with a focus on the best ingredients that Mexico has to offer. 

Meroma is located in the heart of Roma, in a building that was once home to the original architect. The street level entry welcomes guests into a cocktail lounge that opens to the neighborhood's environs. The dining room is located on the second level and split between an interior room and patio. Roma's streets are tree-lined, so the second level dining sets you amongst tree canopies and briefly away from the hustle of the city below.

For our visit, Mercedes prepared an ode to Persephone with a Mexican spin on our classic frangipane tart. Mercedes infused Persephone Wildflower Honey, harvested from local Jackson Hole bees, as the sweetener and Mexican guava as the fruit du jour. We wouldn't be surprised if this Mexican American mashup appears on their seasonally changing menu — it was a total treat.

Need more travel insp? We have more Persephone Journal Travel Posts:

- Have Bread, Will Travel

- Food Guide to San Francisco

- Have Coffee, Will Travel

- Mile High Club