Oct 23 2019
Pedro Sánchez is the Executive Chef at Hunab Ku
Cooking should not be a job. It is an art form, a sparkling, effervescent passion strengthened through years of dedication, training and experience, and many times it is childhood memories and the warmth of home and family that bring about a great artist’s evolution in their chosen path.
Pedro Sánchez, the Executive Chef at Hunab Ku, the avant-garde cuisine restaurant, is passionate about traditional Mexican cuisine which he learned to love at home, from his grandmother, an experienced cook who for many year owned seafood restaurants and is a veteran expert in mole, marinades and chili sauces which he still prepares in her honor and in remembrance of her. Through her, he learned the love of cooking helping her as a young apprentice and savoring the delicious dishes she lovingly prepared for those seated at her table be it clients or family.
At 17 he worked and studied learning his profession at the Centro Culinario Ambrosía, founded by banquet experts and the best school for gastronomical training at the time. He later worked at one of the best restaurants specializing in traditional cuisine in Mexico called el Bajío. Spain was his next stop where he worked for a season at Quique Dacosta a three Michelin star restaurant, number 36 in the world, known for its haute avant-garde cuisine with Mediterranean roots. He returned home to Pujol, in Mexico City. From all of them, he learned the discipline needed in order to work in the best kitchens.
Among many other things, at school he learned culinary management and banquet preparation and, from great experts in the field, contemporary and avant-garde cuisine, but childhood memories and family recipes is where he finds the inspiration for the preparation of traditional dishes like his mother’s cream soups, his grandmother’s chiles rellenos and special rice and his aunt’s pozole, created with his own twist brought about by years of study, hard work and love for what he does.
Chefs are generally generous beings who share their art for the delight of others. Chef Pedro has also generously taken the time to share anecdotes, the reason why he hates cookies as they were almost all he ate during a period of his life, his acquired taste for mole and salsas and his stints in national and international restaurants that gave him the high level skills he boasts today.
Today Hunab Ku, the restaurant at Mía Bacalar, would like to thank Chef Pedro Sánchez’s grandmother for having infused in him the love for great Mexican cuisine and for giving him the start in the world of gastronomy where he is a true shining star. Thank you Chef!
Oct 22 2019
Kohunlich: a Mayan archaeological site near Bacalar
Close to Bacalar you will find Kohunlich, an archaeological site where you will feel like a new explorer discovering an unchartered territory in the middle of the jungle. It is one of the most attractive Mayan archaeological zones due to the lush nature that surrounds it. You can get there either by taxi or by rental car as there is no public transportation to the area.
It is a truly remarkable site you will be able to roam and inspect freely and almost on your own exploring the different structures and finding unexpected locations like the Temple of the Masks, a place that has been widely used to promote the Mayan culture with images of the almost 7 feet tall masks that remain in an astoundingly perfect condition, which captures the imagination and curiosity of history buffs and Mayan culture fans.
At Kohunlich there are beautiful sights of the jungle amidst remnants of squares, ceremonial centers, residential areas and water canals. The local palms that give shade to the area are said to have been the reason for the site’s name, as an English-speaking explorer baptized it as cohoon ridge and from there, with time, came the name Kohunlich. Its original Mayan name is unknown but it must surely have made reference to its lush nature or the huge masks found in its temple.
As all other tropical jungles in the state, it has a rich and astonishing ecosystem and we should be thankful that this place is still yet little known and yet unspoiled, however, if we all do our bit to take care of it and preserve it, the extraordinary birds such as toucans, the peculiar howler monkeys that wander around the area and the bats that live in the constructions, will be able to stay put where they are, which will make visitors very happy and help the local flora and fauna.
The temple of the masks and the 27 step compound and many more constructions in this beautiful area are great reminders of the richness of the Mayan civilization and the natural treasures of this land that was their home. There is not much to think about. If you are staying in Bacalar, walk the same roads as the wise men and warriors of a civilization very much ahead of its time and do yourself a favor coming to discover some place new, beautiful and inspiring, which, much the same as the 7 color lagoon and the city’s famous Fort will charm and enchant you.
Oct 15 2019
Bacalar a Magical Town in Mexico
There are many more than 5 reasons and haven chosen this subject it becomes a challenge to guide you through a straight line without getting distracted by the blue sky, crystal clear waters, delicious food, the market, the church, the incredible views, and the charming hidden unusual strolls, I have committed to giving you 5 reasons and so here they are.
Bacalar is a Magical Town, this says a lot and not enough, yes, Sian Ka’an Bakhalal, the place where the sky is born, today known as Bacalar, is renowned not only because of its charm but also because it maintains its historical heritage and its traditions as intact as possible in this ever changing world. Bacalar is still a little explored destination thus it is still perfect to escape from the hustle and bustle of the modern world and dive into the pace of its waters. Taking care of a heritage and keeping it alive is the number one reason to take care of this treasure in the state of Quintana Roo.
Bacalar is Living History
Bacalar was an important trade center where pirates arrived looking for treasures thus for many years it has been a territory that preserves great chronicles and legends of battles, pursuits and rebellion. Bacalar`s San Felipe Fort, today a museum, takes us back to those turbulent days. Another “living museum“ can be found 25 miles from Bacalar; one of the most ancient Mayan cities called Ichkabal which remained untouched for centuries under the lush jungle and was found a mere 10 years ago. To visit Bacalar is to travel back in time to witness a history of adventure that needs to be preserved.
The lagoon of seven colors
At Bacalar, travelers will find a fresh water lagoon with an infrastructure that is still rustic and charming. The decks constructed by the hotels and the town`s people fit harmoniously with the lagoon that shines in a variety of hues. Kayakers and paddle boarders enjoy unforgettable sunrises in its waters and a great variety of activities such as fishing take place in this natural treasure. The Cenote Azul (Blue Sinkhole) can be found adjacent and the Cenote de la Bruja (Witch’s Sinkhole) inside the lagoon itself, clearly visible due to its characteristic deep blue color, both of these cenotes are snorkel and dive enthusiast favorites. This treasure and its marine inhabitants must be treated with the respect they deserve.
At Bacalar you will find the most ancient living being in the planet, the stromatolites; living rocks that appeared 2500 to 1000 millions of years ago. These formations produced a massive amount of oxygen due to which life in this planet was possible. Today, this fabulous specimens can be found living and breathing in very few places in the planet, a very good reason why we should take care of them.
In the heart of Bacalar lagoon, this hotel promises “a conscious rapprochement to the good life” adjusting to the varying pace of the breeze, the tides, sunrises and sunsets, the moon and the seasons, and there is no way to avoid this happening when you are in a place where the boundaries of water and sky are a blur and where the singing of the birds wakes you up in the morning. One of the great treasures in Bacalar are its people and their hospitality and there is no better proof of it than in this beautiful place where they go to great lengths to live in harmony with the nature that surrounds it and makes it what it is.
I hope I achieved my goal. Visit Bacalar and care for it as if it were your own. Do it for me and for you.