What´s in my Garden?

When I moved to the Yucatan I thought I had a green thumb.  Turns out, I didn´t even have a tropical pinky finger.  My experience with tropical plants was limited to  atriums of glass buildings from the 80´s.  In fact I had a deep-seated aversion to heliconias and philodendrons.  My years in France made me long for a hedge or parterre.  I have murdered hundreds of roses and lavenders over the years.

The garden at my house, Meson San Sebastian for years was just two giant blue agaves and a wall of giant prickly pear cactus.  But now there is fragrance garden in the corner that has something blooming year round.  The lily pond is being taken over by giant lotuses.

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One of my favorite varieties of hibiscus
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Spending time in Andalusia these past few years I love having pomegranates in the garden. I small found this darker variety this year.
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I love the flower and the fragrance of the local spider lilies. There are several variations in my garden.
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This was my first lotus that opened in August of 2017. My pond has white and pink lotuses.
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I started collecting wild orchids a few years ago and every few months I find a new variety. Some are local and some come from other states in Mexico

1000 Bottles of Beer on the Wall

Somewhere around Xcanatun there is a brewery that has been spewing forth some very nice handcrafted beer without additives or chemicals.  Water, hops, yeast and malt are the only ingrediants of Patito (Little Duck).  Now  you can head over to drink it at the corner of calles 64 & 55 where the brewery have opened a sort of pub, I suppose.  It´s a very pleasant ruin of  a house that has not been over restored.  Apparently a real live  Merida born chef  trained at the French school (Bocuse) has made the menu adapting local recipes and ingredients.   His name is Alex Méndez and I know that from reading the article I linked to.  Otherwise I would have thought the food had never been given a second thought as everything I´ve seen come out of the kitchen is very mediocre.  But, ni modo, we are here to talk about and drink some beer.  You can walk down the street two blocks (if you pace yourself) and eat in Santa Lucia square.  But you might enjoy the beer so much you won´t mind what you´re snacking on.

The very nice thing is this.  There are two samplers of 4 beers each in 5 ounce glasses. If you are with close friends or family who have thrown caution and hygiene to the wind you can taste them all.  The brewery started out with a Belgian Blonde Ale and a light Pilsner then they added an India Pale Ale.  These beer are not pasteurized and have no added alcohol or flavors.  Now they have added a Dry Stout, a Wiezenbier, a Porter Vanilla, a Belgian Strong Dark Ale & a Chocolate Stout.  Seasonally they offer other specials around Christmas and Octoberfest.

The brewery and the mothership restaurant are located in Xcanatun on the highway to Progresso.  The food might be better there as reviewed by the Casual Restaurant Critic.  But I have my doubts as the prices there are in dollars and it´s on the cruise ship itinerary.  But if you want a pleasant afternoon break drop in the downtown Hermana Republica and imbibe.  FYI this brewery does not offer bottled beer though a few come in cans…

Mayazul en Mejorada

Mayazul is a vacation home in the historic center near Merjorada Park and the Santa Lucia Square.  The Owners live in Mexico City and created the house for their friends and family to gather for a relaxing time in the Yucatan. It was created by the Reyes Rios+Larrain Studio at the same time as they were designing the hotel Rosas y Xocolate. You can rent the Casa Vieja or the Casa Nueva or both.  They share a common entrance and parking space.  It´s a very popular rental for family reunions and wedding parties.

Casa Nueva has 3 bedrooms all with garden views.  The master suite has a king and large bathroom.  The girls room has twin beds and the guest room is upstairs and has a queen. The large living space has the kitchen and dining table but if you are a big group there is also a dining table on the tejaban portico.

The Casa Vieja was an Art Deco house that has been renovated.  There are two bedrooms a king and one with two doubles.  The living and dining room is under a portico with an open kitchen.  Find out more about this house at Urbano Rentals.

Doctor Guzman’s Antique Bazaar

Doctor Guzman´s Antique Bazaar happens once or twice a year in his shop behind the family home in Garcia Gineres.  The local gentry bring out their family jewels and baccarat. There´s always a lot of belle epoque glass and ceramics amount the gold and and coral rosaries.  If you are lucky enough to be in town when it happens you are sure to find something you´ll treasure.  Here are a few things that caught my eye for one reason or another. originalphoto-502226389-119895

cantina beer glasses
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The Ascension of the Virgin 

 

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A Saintly Relief 
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Seaworld Tray

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Punch

 

 

 

 

Don´t miss Izamal…

I go to Izamal about once a year.  Usually I´m with guests so I do the touristy things like the crafts museum and the convent. But yesterday I went just to see an antique dealer who had a few saints I wanted to see.  After spending all my cash there I went to town and used my debit card on some crafts at Hecho a Mano. All that shopping made me hungry so I went to the Restaurant Kinich. El Pricipe Tutul Xul in Mani has long been my favorite restaurant for the  classic Yucatecan cuisine but now Kinich has take it´s place.  Nothing in Merida compares to these two restaurants.  It´s a pleasure just to have a cool drink and lather the beans and habanero sauce on the freshly hand made tortillas.  The staff are all so friendly and attractive in their traditional dress.  It´s worth including Izamal as a side trip with Chichen Itza or Valladolid.  It´s also worth just heading there for the day from Merida without a to do list… For more daytrips see my Best of Yucatan blog.

Has the Whole World Gone Bananas?

Not this corner of the world yet.  Mexico no doubt will suffer for the next four years and sadly that may make the cheapest safest place to be if you are one of those Americans who did not vote for (he who shall not be named).  We are renovating our website of renovated vacation homes in Merida capitol of the Yucatan Peninsula.  You can check us out at Best of Yucatan and here are some new photos of one of our most popular rental homes L´Orangerie de Santa Ana.