2019 World Cruise - Day 15

Thursday 01.17.19 - Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Details from the Princess Cruise Lines: Day 13 - 17, January 2019 Dress Code: Smart Casual 27 °C / 81 °F Sunny Gangways are Located on Gangway Forward Arrival: 7:00 AM All Aboard: 12:30 PM Puerto Vallarta Shore Excursions Puerto Vallarta was sleepy no more; its transformation into an international resort had begun. Then director John Huston chose the village as the location for his film "Night of the Iguana," starring Richard Burton. Today, the city has its own "Gringo Gulch," a haunt of the rich and famous. Travelers are also drawn by its climate, its excellent shopping - which offers great values on leather goods, jewelry, and handicrafts - and mile after mile of palm-lined beaches.

We were originally scheduled to be in port 8am - 4pm, then they rescheduled it to be 7am - 2:30pm, then yet again to 7am - 12:30pm. This was due to rough seas & bad weather. We needed to maintain our scheduled arrival in Los Angeles (01.20.19) to pick up the other guests for the second segment of the cruise. So as usual, I started the day off with pictures from our balcony.

After crossing the gangway, we paused for a souvenir photo.

Then we picked up a couple of flyers from the welcome desk.

The Norwegian Gem was docked right next to us.

With the shortened time that we will be here, we decided to just eat lunch nearby.  The first place we wanted to eat at did not open until 1pm. We searched around google & found a second place. I’m so happy we found Victor's Place Cafe Tacuba
This restaurant was AWESOME! We arrived around 9:45am & Christian, handed us a breakfast menu. All the pictures online that made us want to eat here were of lunch/dinner items. We asked if that was available, & he quickly brought us a lunch menu, followed by chips & salsa. The chunky salsa had a medium heat, while the orange salsa was HOT!!!

We started off with an incredible octopus tostada.  We each got one & the taste was terrific. I had to eat it mine with a fork. When I picked it up, on the first bite, it exploded all over my shirt. These had nice chunks of octopus, and hints of spice with all the veggies. 
Octopus Tostada

The tostadas were served with four different bottled salsas. A mild, medium, sweet & hot.

For our entrees, Shelly had the Al Pastor Tacos, while I had the Plato Mexicano. There were so many elements to each dish, so I have listed them all below the photos
Al Pastor Taco Plate
3 tacos on corn tortillas, with guacamole, rice & beans

Here's what she thought of her plate:
  • Tacos - soft corn tortillas filled with small crispy bits of pork, mixed in with sweet pineapple pieces. It was served with a side of diced red onions & cilantro.  Some of the best al pastor I have ever had!
  • Guacamole - expertly made. I loved that there was small pieces of red onion scattered throughout. 
  • Rice - Wasn’t the best or worst I have had.
  • Refried beans - thin, velvety smooth texture. I liked these A LOT!
Plato Mexicano
Beef fillet, stuffed pepper, quesadilla, enchilada, taquito, guacamole, rice & beans

My thoughts on this remarkable dish:
  • Beef Filet / Beef Fajita Steak - fork tender, juicy steak. Excellent!
  • Stuffed Pepper / Chile Relleno (Poblano pepper stuffed with Oaxaca cheese) - the batter was a little thin, but I thought it had a great flavor. 
  • Quesadilla (flour tortilla, stuffed with mozzarella cheese) - This was sat on top of the juices from the steak & added extra flavor. We cut it up & ate with pieces of the steak. YUM!
  • Enchilada (corn tortilla stuffed with shredded chicken & topped with cheese) - I thought this was really good as well. 
  • Taquito (corn tortilla stuffed with shredded chicken) - So damn good,I wish there was more than one of these on the plate.
  • Guacamole - expertly made. I loved that there was small pieces of red onion scattered throughout. 
  • Rice - Wasn’t the best or worst I have had.
  • Refried beans - thin, velvety smooth texture. I liked these A LOT!
It’s not listed on the menu, but each of our plates came with a slice of watermelon. I thought this was a refreshing way to finish our meals. All of this was only $44 USD!
Minus points for no credit cards, no WiFi & only can sodas
Bonus points for FREE house made Bailey’s cocktails & tequila shots. 

We took 2 Ubers to & from the restaurant, including tips, we spent $6.30 USD, for both rides combined. Once back aboard we hung out on our balcony, taking pics of the port & watching passengers head back to the ship. After setting sail, we sorted laundry & watched Tomb Raider, while I worked on the blog. 

All that typing & watching Laura Croft run around, made me a little hungry. Following the theme set at lunch, we enjoyed some "Authentic Mexican" salsa with tortilla chips at Nibbles.

With snack time over, we returned to the room to get changed for dinner with the FamDamily (a term Gail gave our little group).

My wife & I both started with an incredible souffle. With it's rich, creamy texture, it was the highlight of our dinner. I added a few peppers to give it some heat. Shelly said "it was probably the best thing I've eaten on the ship. I loved the creamy goat cheese with a lil burnt edges.  Everyone agreed this was terrific."
Twice Baked Goat's Cheese Souffle
garlic sabayon

We both ordered the same cream of wild mushroom soup. I thought it was alright. After a few bites, it became monotonous. Shelly thought it was pretty good & added a few slices of jalapenos for heat.
Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup
sun-blushed roma tomatoes

For my entree, I had the fried chicken, plus I added some pork belly. The chicken reminded me of the stuff you get at the local grocery store deli. It wasn't awful but not great either. A little dry, some sort of sauce would have been good. I really enjoyed the pork belly. It was cooked perfectly. Again some sort of sauce would have helped. 
Home-Style Cuisine: Crispy Southern Skillet-Fried Chicken + Pork Belly
served with coleslaw and French fries

For her entree, Shelly had the scallops & pork with an apple-ginger chutney. "The chutney was sweet and reminded me of applesauce in appearance and flavor.  The scallops were moist and tender, pairing well with the pork belly."
Seared Diver Scallops, Crispy Pork Belly, Apple-Ginger Chutney
green beans and potato hash

Then it was time for dessert.

My chocolate peanut butter ice cream was a lot richer than I expected, but still tasty. 
Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream

Shelly's sugar free coconut cake, had good coconut flavors without being overpowering & was lightly sweet.
Sugar Free Coconut Cake
raspberry sauce

After dinner, we followed our table mates to the Cabaret Lounge to watch another stellar performance. Tonight's production show was,  What the World Needs Now. (Again they asked for no photography or filming).

We then made our way back to the cabin. We turned our clocks back an hour, and went to bed. Two more days at sea then we arrive in Los Angeles. 


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