Estampas de Mi Ciudad – Saints and Superheroes at Mercado de San Juan

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“El Santo” (The Saint)
Mercado de San Juan, Mexico City, Mexico
Photo credit: Brenda Storch

The supernatural and the secular, the old and the new, the exotic and the mundane converge at Mercado de San Juan- a collection of food so eclectic and extraordinary as the imagery that frames it. Mercado de San Juan offers a gateway into what would be the equivalent of anthropological “Cliffs Notes” on Mexico. In less than four aisles, visitors can walk 500 years back in history and choose from  a wide array of pre-Hispanic sources of protein including  chicatana ants, grasshoppers and other insects.

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Grasshoppers on display at Mercado de San Juan
Mercado de San Juan, Mexico City, Mexico
Photo credit: Brenda Storch

Walk a few aisles and a couple of  centuries forward, and discover hundreds of varieties of cheeses at “La Catalana”. Walk a few steps more and find anything from duck to wild boar, ostrich and crocodile in the meat section. Plus, the market has its own fonda, a little food bar with fresh, rustic-yet-extraordinary flavors, in case you want to stay and eat like a local.

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Fonda Dish at Mercado de San Juan
Mercado de San Juan, Mexico City, Mexico
Photo credit: Brenda Storch

I have spent most of my life in Mexico City, and it was not until a recent trip home that I decided to visit Mercado de San Juan. This market has attracted shoppers for hundreds of years, and more contemporarily, celebrities, up-and-coming chefs and food enthusiasts. If you are in D.F. and close to the Centro Histórico, have a taste of Mexico in one of the aisles of Mercado de San Juan. Here, food is sustenance, food is love, food is sacred. Missing it, a sin.

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“San Juan”(St. John)
Mercado de San Juan, Mexico City, Mexico
Photo credit: Brenda Storch

Address: Antiguo Mercado de San Juan Ernesto Pugibet, No.21 loc.162 Centro Historico, Mexico D.F.

Phone:+52 1 55 3101 7290
Hours: Mon- Sun 9:00 am–5:00 pm

3 Responses to Estampas de Mi Ciudad – Saints and Superheroes at Mercado de San Juan

  1. egb108 says:

    What an interesting picture. That butcher means business! I also am curious about the insects. I love the symbolism and how you can tell a story. You see beauty and significance in the smallest most ordinary things and turn them into an extraordinary story. Only in Mexico.

  2. Thank you so much for your comments. Your readership and sensibility are much appreciated!

  3. […] Sadly, La Merced has declined a bit in recent years, and if you are not in the mood for an adrenaline-fueled adventure, a wonderful alternative to get a taste of Mexico is El Mercado de San Juan. […]

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