ENSENADA, BAJA CALIFORNIA – Famous for her family’s street cart mariscos (Mexican seafood), Sabina Bandera of La Gurrerense is opening her new indoor location, Sabina Restaurante, on Saturday, August 6 — just steps from her cart a block east of Ensenada’s malecon.
In business since 1960, Sabina’s mariscos have earned well-deserved praise from culinary luminaries like Anthony Bourdain, who named La Guerrerense “the best street food on the planet”. In fact, Bourdain recently chose to work with Doña Sabina as a cornerstone vendor in his upcoming New York City project, Bourdain Market.
Sabina Restaurante is located on the corner of First and Alvarado in the lower level of Plaza Blanca. The dining is decidedly casual – one orders and pays at the counter as busy marisqueros prepare dishes in the restaurant’s open kitchen. There’s ample seating inside, as well as tables situated on the Plaza Blanca’s outdoor patio.
In addition to serving La Guerrerense’s well-loved seafood tostadas and almejas preparadas (prepared clams), the menu features new cooked entries such as a traditional white pozole from Sabina’s home state of Guerrero, a savory and delicious red seafood pozole, and both traditional Ensenada style fish and shrimp tacos.
All of these amazing dishes can be topped with one of Sabina’s many salsas, which range from sweet to spicy and heat factors from mild to “Gringo beware”!
Renowned Valle de Guadalupe vintner Hugo D’Acosta designed three wines for the Sabina Bandera brand, a blanco, a tinto and a rosado. Craft beers from Agua Mala are also available, as are sodas and house made aguas natruales (drinks flavored with all natural ingredients).
During a recent “soft” opening, A Gringo in Mexico sampled tostadas of sea urchin and clam, fish pate, and pulpo (octopus), classics from Sabina’s street venue. I sparingly added Sabina’s Chilito Diablito, a creamy orange habanero salsa, rated at medium heat, and enjoyed the spicy, piquant layer of taste it added to the seafood.
We also enjoyed both of Sabina’s pozoles. The rich, red broth of the seafood version was mesmerizingly delicious and loaded with undersea goodness. I had to be dragged away from my large clam, shrimp and fish-filled bowl by my party who were ready to head back toward the border for the night.
As I was forced into our waiting van — still clutching my pozole broth-covered spoon — I promised that I would return for more. And so should you when Sabina Restaurante opens Saturday, August 6. Provecho!
Your Gringo in Mexico,
Sabina Restaurante is located on the corner of First and Alvarado in the Plaza Blanca. Watch La Guerrerense’s Facebook page for more information at: www.facebook.com/LaGuerrerenseMx
A Gringo in Mexico was honored to be invited to Doña Sabina’s friends and family opening, where her family generously served attendees samples and drinks on the house. A Gringo in Mexico’s opinions are my own, and I would and will gladly return to Sabina Restaurante on my own peso. No compensation was received for this reporting.