Dinner at Imprevist on our first night in Playa del Carmen has become a tradition for us. After a long day of travel from the states, Jane and I like to relax with delicious food and wonderful service. We made a reservation through the concierge desk at El Taj (the concierge office is right next door to Imprevist), and arrived promptly on time at 7PM. That's a bit early for local customs, so we had the place to ourselves. Juan Luis (the business manager) came out to greet us, and introduced us to Juan Diego (the chef). We decided to explore the menu a bit, and happily went outside our usual comfort zone.
Juan brought the first comfort-zone breaker: Kobe Beef Carpaccio. Neither my wife nor I had ever had beef carpaccio, so this was a unique experience. And it was DELICIOUS! I'm not sure I'd try it anywhere else, but I will certainly have it when I return to Imprevist.
Jane paid Imprevist the ultimate compliment when she said "I can wait to see what they bring next!"
Our second comfort-zone breaker was Tuna Tartar with ginger, soy sauce and citrus foam with a strip of plantain. Now I don't eat Sushi or any other raw fish. But this was AMAZING! Not only have I never tasted anything like it, but now I'm kicking myself for what I've been missing.
Then we moved on to the entre. Jane had Mongolian Beef with Asparagus, Oyster Sauce and Jasmine Rice, which she let me taste. I can truly say that it was unlike anything I've tasted. And it was so good that I used the provided chop sticks (which I'm lousy with), just to honor the dish. I had Tandori Jumbo Shrimp with Rice Noodles and Cashew Nuts. It should be noted that I did NOT offer any of that to my wife . . .
For desert I had a Vanilla Cheesecake that was soft and frothy and delicious. It had toasted Jamaica (Hibiscus) flowers and some sort of berry sauce. I could probably be more specific except that I inhaled it and almost licked my plate!
We returned a couple days later to try out their new Brunch Menu. Jane had Fish and Chips, which in other hands would be mundane. But in Juan Diego's hands it was super fresh Grouper with a light fried crust, with (it must be said) french frieds to die for! I had Crepes with Poblano Chiles, Sweet Corn, Fresh Cheese and Chipotle Sauce. More dish-licking ensued.
Imprevist is certainly the best restaurant in Playa del Carmen, and one of the best restaurants we've ever eaten at anywhere in the world. Congrats to Juan Luis and Juan Diego!