Published on : Thursday, June 2, 2016
ZANAYA opens its doors at Four Seasons Hotel Mexico, DF, introducing the best cuisine of the Mexican Pacific. Chef Tonatiuh Cuevas leads this new culinary adventure, which seeks to showcase fresh seafood and pay homage to the gastronomy of the Mexican Pacific.
The Nayarit coast north of Puerto Vallarta is highlighted especially with ZANAYA’s signature dish of zarandeado fish, a traditional grilled red snapper or sea bass marinated in a dried chile paste or lemon and beer. The dish is also the inspiration for the restaurant’s name, combining “zarandeado” and “Nayarit” in a playful fusion that reflects its relaxed and sophisticated atmosphere.
In developing ZANAYA’s menu, Chef Tonatiuh worked closely with the fishermen of Nayarit and the best zarandeadores in the region to perfect traditional techniques and authentic flavours for the modern urban palate in Mexico City.
“We wanted to serve the flavours of the coast with an emphasis on freshness and product quality,” says Chef Tonatiuh, a native of the capital who trained under some of its best chefs, as well as spending time in the food-centric city of San Francisco, California before joining Four Seasons last year. “We want each guest to experience cuisine that is respectful of tradition, but original in its special touches created just for ZANAYA.”
At the heart of Chef Tonatiuh’s kitchen is an authentic red brick zaranda, which imparts the distinct flavours of the Nayarit in each dish. Working closely with coastal fisherman, he brings seafood “from rod to fork,” enhancing each dish with artisan cheeses, fruits of the region and even locally produced salt.
Another focal point of this new space is the ceviche and aguachile bar, which offers a wide variety of preparations using the freshest and highest quality seafood ingredients. The menu includes products from the Nayarit’s Banderas Bay and San Blas.
The menu’s drinks pairings are achieved through unique cocktail creations from Mica Rousseau, the mixologist of Fifty Mils, opened last year at the Hotel and already lauded as one of the best bars in Mexico. In addition to cocktails, ZANAYA’s wine cellar reveals perfect accompaniments to the cuisine, and there is a wide selection of craft beers and mezcals too.
The retractable terrace roof is one of the main attractions of the new restaurant, which has a “brasserie” style that invites pleasant after-dinner conversation, while enjoying the famed interior garden of Four Seasons.
ZANAYA was designed by the prestigious international architectural firm Martin Brudnizki Design Studio, using warm colours in an open plan that includes a show kitchen.“Mexico is a country full of fusions and contrasts and exuberant people. If there is something that identifies and unites us as Mexicans, it is the pride we have in our cuisine. With ZANAYA we pay homage to one of its regions as we seek to capture that vibrant personality and synthesise it for local guests as well as international travellers who will discover one’s of Mexico’s great cuisines with us,” concludes Chef Tonatiuh.