Coastal tastes of Nayarit, Mexico come to Port Arthur at new restaurant

Published 12:40 am Sunday, April 23, 2023

Zelma Ramirez and her uncle Hector Ramirez are bringing the flavors and culture of her home to Port Arthur with Mariscos Nayarita.

The seafood restaurant serves food of the coastal state of Nayarit and features plenty of fresh seafood with a bit of lemon and lime, various ceviche dishes and other tasty offerings while incorporating the family recipes for red and green sauce.

The eatery opened in November and is located at 8597 9th Avenue near Marble Slab Creamery.

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Ramirez isn’t new to the restaurant business. Her family has seven restaurants close to the beach in Nayarita. While there she started to learn to cook. She has lived in the U.S. several times through the years, and at one point found worked washing dishes at a San Antonio restaurant. While there she honed her skills and learned to make tacos and fajitas.

Three weeks later, the owners saw her talent and moved her to a management position.

Ramirez said the most popular dish served at Mariscos Nayarita is ceviche mixto, which has shrimp, fish and octopus mixed with cucumber, tomatoes, cilantro and onion in lemon. Her personal favorite is the green aguachile, which is butterfly shrimp mixed with onions and sliced cucumbers or Serrano peppers.

But there is much more to the menu: molcajete, a seafood mix of shrimp cooked in lemon juice, octopus, kingfish and boiled shrimp and surimi served with rice, tortillas or crackers. Then there’s the spicy crab diabla, and shrimp patties as well as non-seafood dishes such as chicken, beef and mixed fajitas and tacos, quesadillas, fried shrimp and fish.

Ramirez described what sets her restaurant apart from others.

“Our seafood is more fresh and we cook with lemon,” Ramirez said of the way many of the dishes are prepared.

The eatery can also dial up or down the heat when it comes to spiciness, she said.

The best way to describe the food is fresh.

“Similar to sushi in that it’s fresh,” her nephew Irving Ramirez said. “It’s good with the onions and acidity of the limes that we add. And obviously it’s the style of Mexico.

Southeast Texas Restaurant Reviews Facebook page shows a lot of appreciation for Mariscos Nayarita.

Marisol Gutierrez said she enjoyed the food and asked others to give it a try. Henny Bodle said he was pleased with the prompt service and the restaurant was very clean, adding he would love to try other menu items and “If you’re in Port Arthur you should give them a try.”

Others called the food absolutely delicious.

Mariscos Nayarita is open all week from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.