Romantic but Foreign Dining

09:46 PM

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Hacienda Alemana

by Andariega on May 4,2008

In Puerto Vallarta’s Romantic Zone, The Hacienda Alemana is on Restaurant Row but a block or two further inland than most establishments. Not many visitors just wander by but it is well worth the extra two minute walk. All you see from the outside is bugambilia peeking out from behind a large wall and double doors. When you walk through those doors you feel you are on an hacienda (minus the livestock). There is a huge patio complete with a vine covered well and a tinkling fountain. There is a massive pink bugambilia, some beautiful purple flowering plant climbing all over the place, a shade giving mango tree, orchids and so much more. Of course, this being a restaurant, there are also plenty of tables and umbrellas.

Off to one side is an hacienda styled building, with plenty of arches, tile floors, and brick and stucco walls. There is a small, well stocked bar and more seating on a covered patio, and inside, even more seating. The décor is tasteful ranch and the furnishing classy but casual.

Having arrived between meal times, we were the only customers, and the server gave the impression of not wanting to be disturbed. We smiled and plopped down at a table on the covered terrace, right next to where he was slouching. We asked for drinks. He obliged and also brought menus. In a whining voice he recited the day’s specials.

La Hacienda Alemana is a German restaurant, the name means German hacienda. The menu is very long and in three languages. There is the page advertizing the all you can eat dinner on Fridays and Saturdays featuring nurnberger sausage, classic schnitzel, ham hocks, and fish fillet for 125 pesos. Although I have never tried it friends have told me it is good. There is a short children’s menu. There is a decent selection of appetizers, salads, soups (the Hungarian goulash is served in a bread bowl), a vegetarian section offering pastas, two pages of numbered main courses ( at the bottom of the page the numbers let you know what choice of sides come with each dish). There is a page of desserts and special coffees then a page of beer (some of them German), another of cigars and cocktail and a page recommending other restaurants, the biggest push being for Langostinos, which I consider one of the worst seafood restaurants in town but has the same owner as this place. We also were given a one page menu with the 165 pesos fixed price meal including an appetizer, main course and dessert.

Our waiter, even while being terribly snotty, was attentive. Shortly before coming here I had eaten. When we ordered I passed, commenting that I would just beg a few bites from my friends. Showing his one and only smile for us, the waiter said, “I’ll have to charge you for that.”

Crusty baguette slices were brought to the table along with nice herb butter and a delicious meaty tasting spread. We asked the waiter what it was. He blurted out something we didn’t understand and stomped off. Soon the starters were served. I was given a small plate and silverware. Linda had the potato and leek soup. She had a choice of hot or cold. She chose cold. I tried it, with my rented spoon, and it was delicious. The best I have had in years. Sails and Javier had both order the fixed price meal and, much to my chagrin had ordered the exact same items. They started with the roast beef salad. It was beautiful – frilly lettuce surrounded by carrots, pickled cabbage, cucumber, beets, potato salad and a large serving of thinly sliced roast beef. It was a lot of food for an appetizer. The meat was great and the potato salad was pretty good too.

Shortly after finishing that course the next came out. The boys both had the Nuremburger sausages served with grilled onions and fried potatoes. I whipped out my fork. The sausages were out of this world and the onions even better. Even the potatoes seemed special. Linda, who ordered no main meal, borrowed my fork to snatch a bite. The waiter glared and huffed. We giggled. The waiter had become the entertainment.

Lunch plates cleared, including my silverware, dessert was served. I asked for my spoon back. The nasty waiter gave me back my dirty spoon (I hope it was mine). More entertainment for the table (I didn’t find it so humorous). The apple strudel was ok but not even close to special. Even the ice-cream along side seemed bland. Once again, Linda borrowed a spoon (not mine) and once again the waiter glared. We giggled. After such an incredibly good meal the dessert was a letdown.

I do recommend La Hacienda Alemana. The food was superb and the setting beautiful. We have been here a few times over the years and although I don’t remember the past waiters clearly I do know they were never rude. This waiter I will never forget. I do realize a charge for sharing is common many places but in Mexico it is not. I found it rude. Having vented, I must repeat – Go to La Hacienda Alemana, you won’t regret it. Great food!

Javier said, “Rico, great spread for the bread, excellent vichyssoise. I found it rude that we were charged for sharing a meal. Everything else was so good that I found the strudel a disappointment.
Sails said, “A great looking place, cool and peaceful, nice can, wonderful food, snotty waiter, I’ll be back.”

Sample menu

Artichokes with Vinaigrette…………70 pesos/US$
Hungarian Goulash Soup…………57 pesos/US$
served in a bowl of bread
Spatzle with Swiss Cheese…………85 pesos/US$
Oven Roasted Rabbit…………135 pesos/US$
Herring in Sour Cream…………95 pesos/US$
Veal Bratwurst with Fried Onions. ………..98 pesos/US$

The Hacienda Alemana is open Wednesday through Monday from noon until 11:00 pm. Credit cards are not accepted.

Directions – La Hacienda Alemana is on Basilio Badillo between Insurgentes and Aguacate. From the southeast corner of parking/plaza Lazaro Cardenas (the ocean is to the west) head south one block on Pino Suarez. Go left on Basilio Badillo three and a half blocks. The restaurant is on the right.

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