We arrived in Mexico City near midnight. To our surprise, the rental car agent informed us that, despite our reservation, they were “out of cars”. Luckily for us, his uncle owned a rental car company and had cars available. We didn’t really think it through and said, “OK”. We had a reservation but had not paid for the car. It was a case of, sure, why not?

He called his uncle, who arrived shortly. He was a very friendly man who drove us a short distance from the airport. Tucked behind a hotel, in a dark alley, there it was – a tiny little rental car company. He explained that he was planning on renting us the car he picked us up in, but it did not have headlights. How thoughtful. Instead, we rented what is easily one of the worst cars I have ever driven – the Jack Daniels Special.

We had our first exposure to Pujol and Quintonil. Both restaurants are top-notch and well worth traveling to Mexico City for. The churros at Pujol were to die for. Quintonil fed us cactus variations, tortillas, and cocktails until we were ready to burst.

We also discovered huevos divorciados, which are simply fantastic. What a trip.


What can I say about the Jack Daniels Special? It was a tremendously beat up, clapped-out, heap of garbage. The nickname came from a large “Jack Daniels” sticker on the dash. The headlights did work, but that was about it. Rackety as all get it, it had a tremendous clunk over the smallest bump in the road. At one point, we ran over a cardboard box while zooming down the highway. The box became entangled in the suspension and for a brief period, fixed the clunk. It was a glorious minute or two, and then the box dislodged and the clunk returned.

That all being said, it got us around Mexico City without fail. While I can’t recommend taking rides with strangers, in the middle of the night, and to darkened alleys. In this case, it worked out just fine. Hazzah!