Rompope is an alcoholic beverage which was created in Puebla at the Convento de Santa Clara. It is an eggnog-like drink made from, not surprisingly, eggs, milk, vanilla flavouring and aguardiente. Additional ingredients can be added to create different flavours such as strawberry, cinnamon or coffee. Weirdly, no matter what flavour it is, the colour always ends up fluorescent (as seen in the picture below). Like the subjects of many of my previous posts, Rompope is very poblano, and is sold across the city and state. You can buy it easily wherever you go; for example in Cholula (see post here) and cantinas like La Pasita (see post here).
I haven’t said this in a while, but seriously, how amazing is Puebla! After living here for a while I think we all tend to forget what an amazing city and state this really is. My admiration really comes from the vast amount of dishes that are unique to Puebla. People think they know Mexican food, but really you don’t Mexico till you go to Puebla. Just thinking about uniquely poblana dishes, a huge list comes to mind, from Cemitas,Memelas, Mole, Chiles en Nogada, Tacos Árabes, etc. The list is endless. (More posts to follow on all of Puebla’s eclectic street food).
This post is about ‘chalupas’. It is true that a lot of Mexican dishes are very similar, many of them being variations of different tortilla combinations. But that doesn’t make any one of them any less delicious. So what are chalupas? Well what they are not are those hard shelled things you get at Taco Bell. No, no, no. Real chalupas are antojitos. Typically you eat them as an evening snack or as a starter, and always when celebrating Mexican Independence Day. They are lightly fried small corn tortillas (a little bit crispy but still soft), which have either red or green salsa, that are topped with onion, chicken and sometimes some cheese.
This is a dish for sharing. You don’t order one chalupa, you order a plate of chalupas. And you share them and you eat them with your hands. This is what Mexico, and Puebla is all about: food that is delicious and food that is for sharing.
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Lucha Libre, which literally means ‘free wrestling’, is like WWE Wrestling but much more entertaining. Puebla has its very own lucha libre arena that hosts wrestling every Monday night. This is an experience you can’t pass up on. The wrestlers known as luchadores, bring their charisma, energy and unique costumes to create a fantastic night of entertainment. Most people will recognise luchadores by their distinctive colourful masks, though not all choose to use them. Throughout the night you will see different wrestlers fight each other, and not always 1 vs 1, but also 3 vs 3 for example.
There are three different ticket prices, according to where you sit: 70 pesos (high up), 80 pesos (middle area) and 150 pesos (ring side). In the picture below you can see the three seating areas. Personally, I would recommend the ring side seats, because in other seats it is harder to get chelas (beers)! Much like going to a baseball game, having a beer makes the experience that much more fun. Also like baseball games, there are vendors who come around selling different foods, but Mexican style. You will see cemitas being sold, for example, rather than hot dogs.
The Luchas are located at the ‘Arena’ in El Carmen (very close to the historical center): 13 Oriente 402, El Carmen, 72530 Puebla. The arena hosts ‘lucha libre’ every Monday starting at 9pm. Tickets can be bought on the spot at the ticket booth, or in advance at ticketmaster.com.
This is a quintessentially mexican experience that you shouldn’t pass up on. Soak up the atmosphere and be ready to use those vocal chords!