Our favorite restaurant in Puerto Penasco, Mexico called Pollo Lucas.
We went south four and a half hours for a few days. We had planned this trip after I got back from Seattle to spread my mom’s ashes — but I tested positive for COVID the day before we were supposed to leave.
We had booked a condo through VRBO and we passed the refund date. Of course. The VRBO host told me he’d try to get at least a 50% refund. After a few hours of haggling, he got us 100% money back and we promised to come back and stay in his unit in the future.
I’ve got tons of resort and beach photos, but this post will focus on food. Why not?
The first night we wandered down to the pool and had nachos at the pool bar. Eh. Then we walked down Sandy Beach to Diego’s Tiki Bar and split a shrimp cocktail which was huge. (Puerto Penasco is a fishing village and the main catch is shrimp.) I didn’t get a photo but here’s one of the Tiki Bar.
Diego’s Tiki Bar. Beautiful views, amazing staff and decent food.
If you go by car, rather than beach, this is the sign.
Last time we were in Puerto Penasco we tried to have breakfast at a popular spot called Kaffee Haus. There was a 90-minute wait, so we passed. This time, we decided to go close to opening. We were in luck and got seated immediately.
My favorite Mexican breakfast huevos rancheros. It was delicious! Our entire married life, until we moved to Arizona, my husband and I would spend one weekend morning having huevos at our favorite Mexican restaurants in the Palm Springs area. He orders machaca and I like my huevos rancheros.
My husband’s machaca served with beans and potatoes.
One night we decided to go fancy and we went to Garufa Steak House. It’s in the middle of the condo resorts on Sandy Beach and was delicious but pricey. Still less than what we’d pay in California or Arizona. I ordered the grilled shrimp served with potatoes and veggies. My husband had the rib eye. We also had asparagus. It was all cooked to perfection and flavorful!
The day before we headed home, we had a late lunch at our favorite Pollo Lucas. I’ve never tasted better chicken in my life. We had to wait for 20 minutes for the chicken to finish charbroiling. They must have had a huge lunch rush. We were served one whole chicken hot off the grill, steaming bowls of rice and beans, fresh made salsa and homemade tortillas. All for $20 including the sugary real Cokes.
Chicken with fixings at Pollo Lucas.
Chicken hot off the grill. Juicy, moist with so much flavor. We have tons of leftovers, too!
Real Coca Cola in bottles with tons of sugar.
What is your favorite breakfast food? Do you like to go out to or make it at home?
One of our favorite restaurants, Pollo Lucas, across the border at the beach.
Yesterday I went to the YMCA to swim laps. I had to force myself to go because it’s been rainy, cold and gray. Not the ideal weather to jump in. I wanted to talk to the lifeguard, Wendy. I had told her about our Mexican getaway around a month ago.
She wrote down all my information about the rental agent, condo unit, restaurants, etc. Wendy said she was so excited to learn about the beach four hours away. She, like me, is a recent transplant to the Phoenix area.
Wendy made reservations for this past weekend — the same weekend my husband and I were there. I couldn’t wait to hear what she thought of it.
They were traveling with a couple who had recently retired. “Typical story,” Wendy said.”They worked all their life, finally retired and the husband got ALS and is in a wheelchair.”
She explained that her friend’s lives are very hard with the wife as the 24/7 caregiver and both of them homebound. She thought a trip to the beach was exactly what they needed.
I braved the cold to talk to Wendy and swim laps. I was the only swimmer there and had the pool to myself!
Last time we went to Pollo Lucas, this cat was sitting on the windowsill outside the restaurant.
Wendy was ecstatic! She literally thanked and thanked me some more. They loved everything about the beach and her entire family is planning on returning for Christmas. She said her friend with ALS cried he was so overwhelmed with joy.
I feel happy too, like I shared a bit of joy in someone’s life. I also feel good because I managed to get a swim in yesterday.
We did take out. One chargrilled chicken with the trimmings — but they (or we) forgot the rice and beans. This chicken dinner with homemade tortillas, pickled onions and salsa was $9 USD.
What has brought you joy this week? Have you done something that made someone else’s life brighter? What was it?
Our exploring this weekend took us to a small fishing village in Mexico. Although it’s still a fishing village, Puerto Penasco has grown into a tourist resort town with towering condos and fancy restaurants. Our first trip there was at the end of March. I had asked our realtor, who owns a condo there, where we should eat. He told us his family’s very favorite restaurant was Pollo Lucas for chicken, rice and beans.
That didn’t sound exciting to me, I was on a quest for fresh seafood. So we skipped Pollo Lucas last trip. I remembered it this time and thought, “If it’s his family’s most favorite, maybe we should give it a try.”
The menu is simple: whole chicken, half chicken or quarter chicken. Chicken comes with garnishes of shredded cabbage, onions and home-made tortillas and salsa. Plus rice and beans for 180 pesos or nine dollars for the full chicken meal. That sounds wild right? Maybe I’m off the price for a few dollars.
My husband insisted on the full chicken, while I said we only needed a half. Boy, am I glad he insisted! We got about three meals plus snacks out of the best chicken I’ve tasted in my life! Juicy charbroiled chicken like I’ve never had before.
The beans, rice, tortillas and salsa were unbelievable, too.
Yes, we’ll be back. This is at the top of our list for favorite restaurants in our new beach vacation town. Talk about winner winner chicken dinner!
What restaurants have you been to that compare to this find in Mexico? What’s the best chicken you’ve ever had?