San Luis Potosi


  • Have an elegant dinner inside a magnificent 1870s convent
  • Sample dishes based on centuries-old recipes from all across Mexico
  • View the rotating art exhibits in the upper-floor gallery

Step into El Atrio restaurant and you’ll be convinced you’ve mistakenly wandered into some aristocrat’s elegant home: a Victorian-esque parlor here, a light-flooded atrium there, a cozy library nook for two among the dining rooms. The house was originally a convent, built in the 1870s; taking a cue from that history, owners Juan de Dios Solis and Ricardo Herrera have created a menu based on recipes from the 17th to 19th centuries, sourced from convents and monasteries all over Mexico. They tweaked the instructions for the modern kitchen—original recipes measured ingredients in pinches and handfuls, and cooking times were counted by the number of Hail Marys—and developed a distinctive menu rooted in heirloom foods such as regional cactus fruits, nuts, and seeds. Try the chilevirreinal, a dried ancho stuffed with beef, almonds, figs, and candied cactus fruit, among other ingredients. It pairs well with the ensalada vizcainanas, a bright salad mix with green grapes, sesame seeds, walnuts, and a honey dressing. End the meal with buñuelos, thin and crisp fritters—a holiday staple in Mexico—topped with brown sugar and chased with café de olla (coffee made with cinnamon and served with piloncillo, a cone of cane sugar). After your meal, check out the upstairs art gallery, where exhibits by Mexican artists rotate every six months.

The restaurant is 10 minutes by car from the Conrad and is open for lunch and dinner.

EL ATRIO: 580 Avanzada; +52-444-379-3171; facebook.com/atrioslp