As perhaps Central America
’s most welcoming country, it’s no surprise that the restaurants here in San José represent a variety of cultures from those who have come to make Costa Rica
home. Try these top places to eat in Costa Rica while experiencing flavors from all over the world.
For an exceptionally well-crafted evening, make sure to seek out the Park Cafe. This gastronomic restaurant, located by the large Sabana Park, provides only the best and will not sacrifice quality for a larger influx of guests; so much so that you will need to make reservations here in advance. Whether sitting inside, surrounded by antiques, or in the elegant garden outside, the Park Cafe provides an intimate environment to enjoy an evening with close companions. The gourmet, European-inspired dishes, crafted by Richard Neat, are inventive and beautifully presented. The array of pictures on Neat’s blog exhibit his skill. In light of the precision required to create the evening, expect to take your time soaking up the entire experience.
Sabana Norte, meters north of Rosti Pollo 75, 48 Av. de Las Américas, San José, Costa Rica +506 2290 6324
Café de los Deseos
With a setting that feels almost more like an art gallery than a restaurant, Café de los Deseos whisks you away to a funky evening that is, in a word, hip. With dishes inspired by cultures all over the world, it really will fulfill your deseos (wishes). They offer a variety of coffee drinks and alcoholic beverages including craft beer and sangria.
Calle 15, San José, Costa Rica, +506 2222 0496
Restaurante Grano de Oro
The fine-dining restaurant Grano de Oro, located in the boutique hotel of the same name, serves gourmet cuisine for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Featuring both European and Costa Rican dishes, the restaurant offers a variety of flavors as well as an extensive wine list. It’s no surprise the restaurant has gained such an outstanding reputation with alluring dishes such as the ‘a foie gras crème brûlée with caramelized pears. For a look behind the scenes, check out this tantalizing short video.
Calle 30, San José, Costa Rica, +506 2255 3322
This Italian restaurant located in the neighborhood of Santa Ana is not to be missed while visiting San José. Enjoy traditional Italian dishes such as gourmet pizzas, ravioli, pannacotta, antipastos, calamari and gnocchi that will make you feel like you’re in Italy. The the welcoming ambiance and attentive staff make for a relaxed experience, attracting even famous clientele such as actor Chris Hemsworth.
147, Santa Ana, Costa Rica, +506 2282 7879
Bistro, Restaurant, Central American, Tapas, Vegetarian, Gluten-free, $$$
Found in one of the most artistic areas of the city, the Escalante neighborhood, Kalú itself is a work of art. The building is home to not only the restaurant and terrace seating, but also the eye-catching Boutique Kiosco and Cafeoteca, a coffee bar where purely Costa Rican coffee is available. Inspired chef Camille Ratton creates an array of dishes that range from Indonesian vegetable soup to falafel to quiche. See the Kalú website’s gallery of photos as well as the enticing (and oh-so-well-designed) menu. Be sure to look around the boutique afterwards as it features Costa Rican artisanry.
Calle 31, San José, Costa Rica, +506 2253 8426