Just a few steps away from a busy main road in downtown Puerto Vallarta lies a bright orange building with Oregano written on it...its an unsuspecting hidden gem. The bright exterior matches the cheerfulness of its head chef and owner, Graciela Chela Smit, or Chef Chela as she is affectionately called by visitors. The walls are adorned with big, bright, and beautiful murals, featuring depictions of Afro-Latina women. It. Is. Stunning. Stepping into Oregano is like taking a seat in the middle of a bouquet of birds of paradise. The food is delicious and everything is hands down Too Legit.
We had the Caribbean Wings and Caribbean hummus as our appetizers. The wings were fall off the bone tender and marinated well. It had just enough kick of habanero to enjoy without burning through your taste buds. It was like a tasty pepper sauce that would make anyone with Caribbean ancestry proud. The hummus was delicious as well. It came topped with black sesame seeds, which were thoroughly enjoyed. The sesame seeds imparted an additional nutty flavor to the already very tasty hummus, which is served with warm pita bread. Now for the mains...Braised Oxtail and Curry Chicken. These were some of the most tender oxtails we've ever had. Juicy, saucy, and full of flavor. Spiced just right, you can taste the love which with the food was made. The curry chicken was amazing as well. The flavor of the coconut milk came through, and it had just enough spice to keep us wanting more. It was served with a simple paratha-style roti that was buttery and delicious. We ended with a bailey's chocolate cheesecake, which was topped with a smear of what tasted like cajeta. Cajeta is a caramel-like treat. It's made by cooking down goat milk and sugar. So freaking good.
Oregano is an absolute gem. Chef Chela and her amazing staff made the visit even more enjoyable. And if you're lucky enough, you may even get a visit from their sweet lil piggy named Tako. No, seriously, they have an adorable little pig who makes it his business to pass by the table for a second or two and say hello. He's the real star of the show! Oregano is going to be a staple anytime and every time we visit Puerto Vallarta. Make your way to Oregano, they will welcome you with open arms and leave you with a satisfied and full belly. And be sure to tell them that Legit Foodie sent you!
Love, Peace & Good Eats!
Chef Chela, LaToia & Isaac at Oregano Restaurant & Bar in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
Braised Oxtails and South Caribbean Curry Chicken