Drink artisanal beer or mezcal from noon to ten at this traditional cantina that has been updated and upgraded by the partners who brought you La Fundacion Mezcaleria. La Negrita is full of young art students and hipster wannabes. The walls are covered with the naive-ish painting by Israel Koh who´s studio is just down the street and open to his adoring public. A newer cantina that´s popular with the expat crowd and the locals is El Cardinal. There is a craft beer scene in Merida, of course, and there is no where better to sample it than the new Hermana Republica ¨gastropub¨. They are owned by the Patito brewery and offer a sampler of 8 different beer in a beautifully renovated colonial home.
Drink more mezcal at La Fundacion Mezcaleria if you can get in. Open from Wednesday to Sunday until the wee hours. As the owners have their own recording studio you are likely to be treated or tortured by live music depending on your luck. Either way it won´t matter much as you´ll be an expert on the agave juice by the time stumble out the off the dance floor and out the door. If you remember your Tepeztate from your Arroqueño you haven´t had enough to drink. Stumble back in and have some Oaxacan tacos or quesadillas.
If you need a cocktail you need Malahat. It´s a not so secret little speakeasy behind Santa Lucia park that you enter from the parking lot. It´s Arni Murillo´s baby, he´s the Maitre ´D at Apoala. But again it´s only open from Wednesday to Sunday. But the cocktails at Apoala are very good too.
Now a new place is open in Santa Ana called Casa Dominga. Me and most of my friends have a story about how awful it is and how nice it is that Oliva is just across the street. But lets say you are not an old jaded fart and you´d like some loud noise and fast food and your with a group where one wants carnitas and the other wants beer and pretzels. Go for it.