Puerto Vallarta, Mexico: Mexiluxe
When your grandfather spent three decades as the manager of the George V in Paris, hospitality is bound to be in your blood.
And Thierry Blouet got more than that—the man can cook. His restaurant Cafe des Artistes in Puerto Vallarta has, for over 20 years, been one of the best places to eat in all of Mexico. It is contemporary French in approach, which means you'll find on the menu the traditional—foie gras and truffles—along with things like Chilean sea bass marinated with miso, hot artichoke jelly, prosciutto and champagne sauce. Oh la la!
If you've been to Puerto Vallarta in the past twenty years, you may well have tried M. Blouet's food. More recently, though, he's added a twist on the second floor of his restaurant: Thierry Blouet Cocina de Autor, a more formal, more ambitious experience than Cafe des Artistes below: 40 seats, one seating, a choice of four to twelve (!) courses, paired with wine. The price tag is a reasonable—considering the quality—$80-$170, tax included.
For those who grew up thinking of Puerto Vallarta as the giveaway trip on countless game shows, you'll be pleasantly surprised at the style, charm, and sophistication of the town. M. Blouet is a perfect example.