15. März 2019
Mexico City: Attractive bars, wall-to-wall mirrors, pasta tile floors and wood panels—these essential elements of a 19th-century cantina are incorporated in La Imperial’s effort to pay tribute to a golden age, accompanied by chords of guitars, fine spirits and authentic flavors
The quintessential setting of social effervescence, Mexican cantinas have always been the perfect place for lively conversations, unleashed passion and enjoyable food. This tradition had its golden age in 19th-century Mexico and is now reborn at La Imperial through an atmosphere full of winks to the country’s memory: the floor design inspired by the cloaks of the priests at the Templo Mayor; its tin roof highlighted by the warm lighting; the engraved stained glass windows; and the historical flags.
Such a striking concept honors its ancestors and their influences from French brasseries and New Orleans salons. La Imperial is a tribute to the old school of cantinas; it’s where the memory of yesteryear’s aesthetics and service meet today’s vitality. The references are clear as soon as you cross the threshold, and their authenticity is expressed through the essence, the bustle and the smell of food, which give it its no-frills Mexican identity. Music notes float in the atmosphere from the guitars of Mexican trios, accompanied by the harmonious sound of glassware clinking during toasts.
The menu at La Imperial features iconic national dishes, like escamoles (ant egg “caviar”), maguey worms and chapulines (grasshopers). Other standouts include dishes where you can taste the distinct flavor that comes from the stove of a mayora (traditionally, an expert cook, usually an older woman) who knows how to prepare chalupitas, panuchos, chipotle meatballs, shrimp soup, mole poblano or a Oaxaca cheese and green salsa molcajete.
Its connection to the modern world is strengthened by its several locations. One of the most iconic (and newest) is located in Torre Reforma, recognized through the International Highrise Award 2018 as the most innovative skyscraper in the world.
Conceived as a tribute to the splendor of Mexican cantinas at the end of the 19th century, La Imperial recovers elements of the country’s vast history and rich cultural legacy and incorporates them into its ambience and gastronomic offerings. Its experience connects past and present to build new memories along with diners.
Images: Courtesy of La Imperial
With three strategic locations in Mexico City (in Polanco, Santa Fe, and Reforma), Cantina La Imperial is part of Grupo MYT, which, for more than 20 years, has designed, developed and managed different gastronomic concepts in Mexico and the United States.