D I N I N G 70 Los Cabos Magazine | Summer 2016 The restaurant’s setting is every bit as spectacular as its food. Shaded in most areas by an enormous palapa roof made from dried palm leaves, the alfresco dining room and bar extends outward in concentric circles, with diners occasionally seated near cactus or colorful trees wrapped in flashing lights and glittering ornaments. At night, table linens are bathed in moonlight as tropical breezes blow in from the Sea of Cortés, a cool counterpoint to the warm sounds of romantic ballads and waves breaking along the nearby shore. The service, too, is first class, with staff members gliding effortlessly between kitchen and table, pausing to recite nightly specials or provide the perfect pairing advice from Pitahayas’ expansive wine list. The restaurant’s wine cellar, La Cava de Santiago, is among the best in Baja California Sur—an opinion made official via an award from Wine Spectator—showcasing more than 400 labels from premier domestic and international producers. It’s also a highly sought-after event venue. Made from stone and accessible only through wrought-iron gates, the wine cave offers an intimate and sui generis space for small dinner and cocktail parties. For the signature Pitahayas experience, arrive at sunset for tropical cocktails at the bar, then commandeer a table overlooking the Sea of Cortés for a multicourse tour through the diverse dinner menu. It’s impossible to go wrong with an appetizer of pork carnitas, lumpia rolls or crunchy shrimp in a carrot-and-habanero sauce, followed by a roasted beet salad tossed with a healthy and organic array of arugula, mushroom, and tomato, and given a signature Pitahayas twist with panela, carnitas, and habanero vanilla vinaigrette. Entrées are prepared by wok or grill, and their preparations reflect the chef’s mastery of both cooking methods. Highlights from the former include an artistically plated seafood symphony of fresh lobster, broiled shrimp, and soft-shell crab paired with a choice of lemon aioli, mango coulis, and ponzu butter; from the latter, a heartbreakingly tender short rib in a chile chilhuacle demi-glace served with spinach and wasabi mashed potatoes. Later, after a brief interlude to reflect on the gustatory pleasures to date, finish with a shot of espresso and crème brûlée, or a dessert sampler featuring jasmine, lemongrass, and rich chocolate. The palapa roof at Pitahayas is a sight to behold. The restaurant’s setting is every bit as spectacular as its food.
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