By M.A. Velazquez
The town of Rocky Point began as a small fishing village in the 1920’s. In the early years most people here worked as fishermen (pescadores), and while the town has grown and the hotel and tourism industry have become key to Rocky Point’s development, fishing is still a main source of income for the local population. That being said, the most popular cuisine in Rocky Point is seafood and during the summer months it is readily available. As temperatures rise, cold shrimp cocktail and ceviche become popular. And with so many types of seafood available here in Rocky Point, including shrimp, scallops, squid and various types of fish, summertime is the perfect time to experience fresh meals because you know your seafood was not transported in the heat from an alternate location. It’s right out of the Sea of Cortez- fresh from ocean to plate! There are many restaurants that offer a variety of seafood options and many also offer traditional Mexican and also American favorites, but seafood is certainly a summertime favorite here in Rocky Point.
If you are staying in the popular Sandy Beach area, there are many great options for dining in the resorts. At Sonoran Spa Resort the at the on-site restaurant, The Sonoran Grill, you can try the Shrimp Sampler appetizer with breaded, coconut and peel and eat shrimp accompanied by a homemade dipping sauce. For lunchtime the Spicy Chipotle Shrimp Tacos are recommended and for dinner you can please your palette with the Flounder Picatta served with linguini pasta and vegetables or the Blackened Salmon seasoned with a Cajun rub and served with a loaded backed potato and vegetables. At Sonoran Sea you have Casa de Ramon where you can keep cool with a chilled shrimp salad, traditional fish or shrimp ceviche, or a spicy shrimp cocktail. For dinner try the Carlos V Shrimp (wrapped in bacon) or the shrimp fajitas, which can also be mixed with chicken and beef. The restaurant offers Mexican breakfast as well. Emiliano’s is the restaurant located at Sonoran Sun resort. They offer a breakfast buffet on the weekends that includes Mexican fare such as Chilequiles and Sonoran Machaca and American selections such as Hot Cakes, Waffles and French Toast. For lunch or dinner try a bit of traditional Rocky Point seafood with a Seafood Stuffed Potato, the Bucanero Fish (a Flounder Fillet covered with a creamy sauce made with squid, clams and shrimp), or the Rocky Point Shrimp (shrimp wrapped in bacon and covered in apple sauce). At Sonoran Sky you can grab a quick lunch at the Tiki Bar as you enjoy a cocktail on the wooden deck right on the beach. Lunch items include fish, chicken or beef tacos, nachos, wings and pizza.
Las Palomas resort features two restaurants, La Maria and Citron. At La Maria you can try a bit of Mexican fair with the Northern Grilled Steak (Flank Steak served with Refried Beans, Guacamole, Grilled Onions and a Cheese Crisp) or the Grilled Ribeye served with a baked potato, grilled onions and a chili salsa. For a taste of the fresh local seafood try the Octopus in Garlic Sauce with Chili Strips or the Penasco Seafood Platter- a combination of fish, shrimp, octopus and steamed shellfish cooked in foil and served with a special house sauce. Citron Restaurant is known for its weekend brunch buffet which includes everything from All-American to Mexican cuisine, an Omelet bar where you can select your favorite ingredients, an array of fresh fruits and juices, desserts and of course, champagne! The champagne brunch at Citron restaurant at Las Palomas is a Rocky Point favorite and one you won’t want to miss! The new Colin’s Cantina at the Princessa resort is a great place to stop in for a bucket of beer or even a bucket of clams. You can also spice things up with a cold shrimp cocktail or the shrimp jalapeno poppers. They also serve breakfast daily where you can try the Mexican Scramble or the Bacon Blue Pancakes- blueberry pancakes with the bacon cooked right in! If you are staying at Playa Bonita, or the Playa Bonita RV Park, check out Puesta de Sol for snacks such as wings and burgers and also for seafood such as Mariscos (shrimp cocktail) and fish. They also offer a weekend buffet. All restaurants within the resorts are open to the public.
Just outside of town lies Mayan Palace where you will find Balche’ and Bakal restaurants, the former offering a lighter lunch fair such as sandwiches and hamburgers and the latter offering traditional Mexican and Italian Cuisine as well as BBQ.
If you are out and about in town and looking for a place to relax while you dine try Maria Bonita at the Viña del Mar Hotel at the end of the Old Port. During breakfast you can try a traditional Empanada stuffed with chorizo, cream cheese and onions and served with beans or a traditional Torta, which is a Mexican sandwich with beans, egg, ham, cheese and avocado. For lunch or dinner you can try the Ceviche or have the Rocky Special for Two (fish, clams, shrimp and ceviche) as you dine overlooking the ocean. Also in town is Miguel’s located at the hotel Peñasco del Sol. They are open for lunch and dinner. In keeping with the traditional seafood, for lunch try the Melted Shrimp Sandwich served with bacon, avocado, tomato, sautéed onions, chili pepper and a chipotle-chili aioli or the Crunchy Shrimp, which is breaded, stuffed with cream cheese and served with rice, steamed vegetables and a raspberry sauce. And the Catch of the Day served with Mashed Potatoes or Rice and Grilled Vegetables is always a great choice for dinner. And if you are a little further into town, try Aladino’s at the Paraiso del Desierto where you can try the daily buffet offering Pancakes, Eggs, Waffles and Mexican favorites and classic items such as Menudo on Saturdays and Sundays. Take the time to visit some of our restaurants during your stay this summer and be sure to sample some of the Sea of Cortez’s finest offerings!