In the thousands of times that I’ve visited New York City in the past, I had never spent time in Harlem. Now that I’m living here, I’ve made it a point to experience all parts of Manhattan. So, when a friend from home came to visit this past weekend, I saw it as the perfect opportunity to charter new ground. Thus, we journeyed North-East, out of the Mo-Hi bubble, and into Spanish Harlem. While Harlem houses rich culture, it also houses rich food. After walking around a bit, we came across a notable gem: Restaurant San Cristobal, also known as Cafe Ollin.
Restaurant San Cristobal is a small Mexican restaurant. Walking through their doors was like walking into Mexico. The quaint little restaurant is covered with Mexican-style ornaments and they play traditional music.
The decor was almost as amazing as the food (and their prices). We each ordered our own tacos and shared one of their famous tortas (a kind of sandwich), all for under $20.
I had ordered the “chicken taco con todo.” What delighted me most when seeing this dish come out was how green the avocado was. All ingredients were fresh, which was reflected in the quality of the taste.
This is their traditional “cemita” with breaded steak. It is a sandwich filled with black beans, lettuce, tomato, avocado, oaxaca cheese, and chipotle. The chipotle added the perfect bite to this sandwich, satisfying all taste buds.
So, he next time you’re in the mood for Mexican and are planning on getting Chipotle, consider Restaurant San Cristobal. It’s authentic Mexican food that will probably end up costing you less.