For delicious local eats in a locals environment, head to Restaurant D’Al (Calle 54 at Calle 53, tel. 999/923-7012, 9:30 a.m.–9 p.m. Mon.–Fri., 9:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Sat., US$2–5). A small, off-the-beaten-track restaurant that will undoubtedly leave you satisfied. Daily comida corrida specials are especially good deals—for US$3–4, you’ll get a big entrée with a bunch of sides and a drink. You’ll leave wishing you had a fridge for leftovers.
Pórtico Del Peregrino (Calle 57 between Calles 60 and 62, tel. 999/928-6163, noon–midnight daily, US$5–14) is an intimate and upscale restaurant offering excellent Yucatecan dishes in a vine-covered patio or two air-conditioned dining rooms. Be sure to try the house specialties—sopa de lima (lime soup), pollo pibil (chicken with Maya spices wrapped in banana leaves), and berenjenas al horno (slices of eggplant layered and baked with chicken and cheese). Reservations recommended for outdoor evening dining.
Café La Habana (Calle 59 at Calle 62, open 24 hours daily, US$3–10) is a classic greasy spoon diner with a Yucatecan twist: Legions of waiters in crisp white shirts and dark bow ties serve strong and hot coffee along with local and Cuban fare. The chilaquiles con huevo (fried corn tortillas in tomato sauce and cheese with a fried egg on top) is excellent. The large smoking section—with its clouds of cigarette and cigar smoke—is always bustling; nonsmokers are segregated to the far end of the room with a handful of air-conditioners.