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“Italian in Mexico??”
Review of Da Luisa

Da Luisa
Ranked #46 of 253 Restaurants in Isla Mujeres
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $5 - $50
Cuisines: Italian, Mexican
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Special occasions, Business meetings, Local cuisine, Large groups, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Breakfast, Lunch, Reservations
Description: Wonderful rooftop dining. Great Italian- Mediterranean food; specialize in seafood.
Reviewed June 26, 2012

Who'd a thought??? We sat down and I could not believe I was ordering Italian on a Mexican island. I am here to say that this was one of the best if not THE best Italian meals I have ever had. 5 stars! Just to add a bit of local fare to our meal we ordered the guacamole. Wow! Do not miss this place!

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
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    • Food
1  Thank ORLMB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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176 - 180 of 262 reviews

Reviewed June 17, 2012

This location was a great spot for our 29th anniversary dinner. We ate at sunset, in front of rolling waves. A brave surfer entertained us as the sun went down. We ate and drank leisurely as the evening progressed. Our service was great: friendly and prompt. The food was very good. I ate lobster ravioli that I enjoyed, though it was a bit overwhelmed by the marinara sauce. My wife's lobster (tail) with spaghetti was good as well. We split an octopus salad that we very much enjoyed. We recommend Da Luisa highly.

2  Thank psteg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 26, 2012

This was a private dining experience: we were the only couple there the entire meal - so of course we had impeccable service but I feel we would have regardless. Dear heart could not stop exclaiming how good his grilled shrimp was (next day: what did I have? the grilled shrimp. no, the best grilled shrimp ever!) Moy explained that they had two chefs: one Italian and one Mexican. I had penne shrimp which was delicious. They had my Sav Blanc by the glass, bless them. The restaurant is very pretty and a bit upscale from some of the downtown spots. The views are spectack! It was windy so we ate inside but with windows all around you can see everywhere. We had been meaning to visit this restaurant on previous trips but got lazy or didn't have a golf cart that day...we won't miss it again..it goes on the "must do" list!

1  Thank workfortrips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 25, 2012

We happened on to this restaurant while driving around trying to find another restaurant that was closed. Boy, did we make the right choice. The view and meal were spectacular. We will be back!

Thank saranc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 23, 2012

We visited Isla last month and took a list of TA recommended restaurants with us. The first thing we found was that it seems a lot of the eateries rated "excellent" were pretty basic and thus probably rated that way on the basis of low cost / family friendliness rather than an upscale dining experience which tends to be what we look for at dinner time. We passed Da Luisa in our golf cart and it looked nice so we stopped to read the dinner menu. The theme is "Mediterranean" and seemed an interesting change from Mexican fare (which we also enjoy but sometimes different is good) so we went in to make a reservation for that evening. The very charming owner seemed surprised that anybody would make a reservation but dutifully produced an impressive leather-bound reservations book, blew the dust off it and ceremoniously recorded our reservation.
We asked for an ouside table under the "palapa" which is basically an open sided area with a thatched roof. In Da Luisa the palapa is right at the edge of the patio overlooking the ocean and even though it would be dark by the time we dined we wanted the ambiance of the waves washing over the rocks below. It was quite a windy evening (the wine list blew away immediately and was never seen again) and when we arrived nobody was ouside at all and there were precious few inside but nonetheless a lovely table had been laid for us in the palapa as requested. Right from the outset we just felt really comfortable and very welcome and that feeling was enhanced further as the evening went on.
The menu is not extensive (I like that - don't offer too much but make sure what you do offer is excellent) but there were dishes to suit pretty much every taste. I started with the tuna tartare and my SO chose the octopus salad. Both were predictably super-fresh, very tasty and nicely presented. For main course I had tournedos au poivre. I really cannot say enough about this dish. The steak was very flavorful, prefectly cooked and the au poivre sauce (brandy-cream based) was absolutely "to die for". My SO had grilled sea bass with fresh grilled vegetables. The fish was beautifully browned yet moist with a wonderful delicate flavor and for me to say that about fish really says something. Next time I would order that dish and I almost never eat fish! We closed the evening with a very good home made flan and great espresso's which were delivered with a complimentary glass of excellent sipping tequila.
I guess we enthused so much about the food that the owner brought out Georgio, the young Italian chef who sat with us for 20 minutes chatting, sharing tequila and listening to the ocean in the background which was just a perfect end end to the evening.
I would say that Da Luisa was "expensive" for Isla but everything is relative. The check was around US$140 including tip but that included all the food, two large cocktails and a bottle of decent wine which is quite expensive on Isla so overall we felt this restaurant was a solid value with great food and a great ambiance enhanced by really lovely staff.
In fact, Da Luisa is connected to a boutique hotel owned by the same family and we would definately consider staying at the hotel next time we visit.
I am always frustrated that TA doesn't provide for "1/2" ratings as while I can't quite give Da Luisa a 5 compared to all the restaurants we have eaten at over the years it really deserves more than a 4. Perhaps the best way to put it is that Da Luisa is definately a 5 for Isla if not quite that good on a "global" scale.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Armarina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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