San Jose, Costa Rica

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Restaurants in San Jose, Costa Rica: Gastronomy & Typical Cuisine

Restaurants in San Jos?????©, Costa Rica

Costa Rica's cuisine is both rich and diverse, and the city of San Jose is no exception. The city offers visitors a wide variety of tropical fruits and vegetables, meats and fresh seafood. Make sure to try the local cuisine, which is nutritious as well as varied; it features delicious and unique dishes combining meat or seafood with vegetables, rice and corn.

Traditional Cuisine

Restaurants in San Jose, Costa Rica

The main staple food in Costa Rica is called "gallo pinto", made with rice and black beans. Another common dish is "casado", a meal made from rice, beans, meat or fish, fried plantain, carrot, tomato and cabbage. "Olla de carne" is a delicious meal made with meat, potatoes, carrots, chayote, bananas and yucca. "Pati" is a spicy meat dish similar to an empanada. "Rondon" is a savory fish soup served with banana, breadfruit, peppers and spices. Make sure to try them on your visit to Costa Rica!



Dining in San Jose, Costa Rica

The country's mot common drink is "refresco" or "fresco", a natural drink prepared with fruit, sugar and ice. Like other Latin American countries, a popular beverage here is "horchata" (a refreshing drink made with rice and cinnamon), as well as beer, coffee and a liquor known as "guaro".





Restaurants in San Jose, Costa Rica

Costa Rica produces some of the best coffee in the world. Local coffee beans are often toasted with sugar to create a dark and thick coffee that's less bitter. This strong coffee is traditionally served with milk in a tall glass. Up until 20 years ago, all homes in Costa Rica had a "chorreador de cafe", a rudimentary device for filtering coffee. These small machines had a wooden frame about 12 inches tall, with a filter set on top. Coffee grounds were set in the filter, and hot water was slowly poured through the filter into a mug below. Today, the tradition of the "chorreador de cafe" is almost llost, since many Costa Ricans have switched to the faster and more modern coffeemakers.

Main Restaurants

Restaurants in San Jose, Costa Rica

With a solid and growing tourism industry, San Jose offers a wide variety of restaurants, ranging from international fast food and traditional regional cuisine served in small restaurants known as "sodas", to haute international cuisine and elegant restaurants. Following is a guide of San Jose's restaurants by category, excluding fast food establishments:

Local and South American Cuisine

  • Doña Lela
  • Restaurante San Miguel
  • Barbecue Los Anonos
  • Soda La Vasconia
  • Donde Carlos
  • El Chicote
  • La Cava Grill
  • La Cocina de Leña
  • Machu Picchu
  • Soda Tapia
  • Whappin'
  • La Peña de Cantares
  • Mirador Ram Luna
  • Restaurante Bohemia


  • Cafeteria 1830
  • Café Mundo
  • Grano de Oro
  • Jurgen's
  • Park Café
  • Café de Teatro Nacional
  • Le Monastere

Italian, Mediterranean and Turkish

  • Bacchus
  • La Piazetta
  • Olio
  • Il Ponte Vecchio
  • Aya Sofy
  • Pizzeria Caccio

Vegetarian, Asian and Indian

  • Taj Mahal
  • Tin Jo
  • Vishnu
  • Isla Verde
  • Exótico Oriente
  • Sakura

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