We walked by La Bamba Jarocha several times. It’s that restaurant in Playa Del Carmen, always packed, with the 70’s bamboo curtains surrounding the exterior. It’s one of those places that we promised ourselves that we’d try at some point. But after getting the best recommendation ever (from someone standing behind us in line at an obscure seafood taco stand who rolled her eyes when she walked about this place) we knew it was time to cross the bamboo curtain and give it a try. And after the first bite, we wondered what had taken us so long.
The interior of the seafood restaurant is light and bright with colorful murals of fishing villages.
We started with a shrimp tostada. Wonderful large plump shrimp on a fried tortilla over a slightly and surprising sweet sauce.
But what we were really after was the cazuela de camarones – translated to shrimp casserole, but, like so many things with language, the name in translation does not truly capture the dish.
A garlicy bowl of shrimp served in a stone dish straight out of the oven. The broth tasted like a briny shrimp bisque with ham combined with an astonishing amount of large fresh shrimp and topped with cheese and avocado.
And it comes to the table still bubbling from the oven.
The presentation speaks for itself and the flavor delivers. We had a 1/2 order of the cazuela and barely finished it. There are several other seafood dishes on the menu, but looking around the restaurant, this one seemed to be the favorite. And no secret as I mentioned because this place is always jammed with locals every time we go by. But luckily enough with plenty of room for us – and we’ll be back to claim a spot.
Located on 30th Ave and Calle 36 in Playa Del Carmen, Quintana Roo, MX