We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“fabulous upscale Mexican fare” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Cetli

Cetli
Polar Norte St | one block north of Avenida Tulum, Tulum, Mexico
984-108-0681
Improve this listing
Ranked #21 of 203 restaurants in Tulum
Cuisines: Mexican
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Local cuisine, Special occasions
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night, Dessert
West Hartford, Connecticut
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“fabulous upscale Mexican fare”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2013

Outstanding cuisine off the beaten track of Tulum. We vacation yearly near Tulum, and Cetli is a "must" each year. Tasteful, quintessential Mexican decor is enchanting. The fare is truly of gourmet nature. The owner is lovely and attentive to guests. Don't miss this special place because it is located a block "in" from the main drag. Always one of the best meals you will eat!

  • Visited February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

210 reviews from our community

87% Recommend
    159
    24
    13
    5
    9
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
New York City, New York
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Unique and delightful dining experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2013

While a lot of the food one eats in Tulum is fresh and delicious local fare, it is mostly simple. Doesn't qualify as a gourmet experience. Cetli however is the exception. Housed in what feels like a private home, prepare for expert and quasi-haute cuisine. The dishes are Mexican, representative of various regions and are beautifully executed. The setting adds to the experience--the dining room is decorated with varied and charming artwork, apparently hand-selected by the owner. Strangely we were the only diners the night we went so the service was focused and impeccable. Ask for the tamarind margarita, the starter soup, and be charmed by the fabulous extras you will receive. One of the best dining experiences in Tulum by far.
Cetli is located one block West of Tulum's main drag--parallel to the main road.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, Florida
2 reviews
“A MUST VISIT WHILE IN TULUM”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013 via mobile

Simply the best restaurant in Tulum, outstanding food and service !!
This place is the real deal , great traditional Mexican place in an dia de Los Muertos decorated atmosphere.
No wonder why it's rated Number 1 in Tulum !!

  • Visited July 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
45 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
“One of a kind experience; See another side of Mexican food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2013

I admit it. I'm a picky New Yorker, and a foodie. I recommend this place whole-heartedly. I've been to this restaurant twice. Both times it was special experience.

Eating at Cetli feels like eating a special meal in someone's home. On some level, that's exactly what it is. Peek in the bathroom or the kitchen and you will see a circa-1975 suburban kitchen and bathroom. It sounds weird, but its actually one of the many charming quirks of Cetli.

But let's talk about the food... First you'll have a fantastic, complimentary platter of amuse bouche from the chef. From the menu, I suggest the Tortilla Soup to start, and one of the many amazing Molés for an entree. I personally like the black Molé.

My one complaint is that the chicken has been overcooked and tough both times I visited- but that is my picky New Yorker talking. Its really the one negative against a huge list of positives. The owner (also your host and chef) is so lovely, accomodating, and so helpful. The molés at Cetli are an amazing study of the wide range of flavors that fall under the name "Molé", and a peek at a different side of Mexican home cooking. Well worth the trip!

PS- One more tip... the namesake dessert.. not my favorite. It's a heavy end to a heavy meal.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ithaca, New York
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“creative take on local cuisine”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

Interesting, creative take on local cuisine. We enjoyed the setting, the service and our food. We liked that they served local food and wine. We were disappointed that Claudia wasn't in the night we were there. But we got a sense of her personality when we took a a self guided tour of the other rooms filled with colorful art and artifacts.
But honestly, overall, I felt I was in a restaurant back in the states, Maybe it was a little too a dark and quiet and formal. That said I would go back again and I recommend it to anyone who happens to find themselves in Tulum.

Visited March 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Cetli also viewed

Tulum, Riviera Maya
Tulum, Riviera Maya
 
Tulum, Riviera Maya
Tulum, Riviera Maya
 
Tulum, Riviera Maya
Tulum, Riviera Maya
 
Tulum, Riviera Maya

Been to Cetli? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Cetli, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.