Pretty much anywhere you choose to eat in Puerto Rico is going to be delicious, trust me, I have experienced this first hand! From authentic mofongo, or mashed green plantains mixed with garlic, and usually, some kind of meat and Caribbean seafood, to possibly the best burger you’ll ever eat, Puerto Rico is a culinary paradise - not to mention the delicious Puerto Rican coffee. You can’t go wrong with the cuisine here. So, let’s check out some of the best places to eat in Puerto Rico so you can discover what I already know!
1. Poet’s Passage in Old San Juan
Poet’s Passage is a must-stop coffee shop and café if you’re in Old San Juan. They have truly delicious coffee (I recommend the white chocolate mocha), café sandwiches, sweets, and more - to top it off, it’s also an art gallery and store! Before or after you eat, you can browse the wares and talk with the shop clerks - they’ll likely tell you to come back later for a poetry reading or open mic night, held right here, on a stage in the shop.
Address: 203 Calle Cruz, San Juan 00901-1609, Puerto Rico
Facebook: Poet’s Passage
2. Zombie Coffee in Old San Juan
Another Old San Juan hot spot, Zombie Coffee is a coffee and frozen yogurt shop, plus, they also have salad, beer, and pizza (including dessert pizza)! Their coffee gets rave reviews, and I can personally attest to the deliciousness and variety of their fro-yo flavors, especially on a warm night in San Juan. Build your own fro-yo sundae and/or pizza, then relax outside in the beer garden or lounge area.
Frozenyo and Zombie Coffee
Address: 357 Tetuán Street, San Juan 00901, Puerto Rico
Facebook: Frozenyo and Zombie Bar
3. Yamburger in San Juan
I love burgers, and this place definitely raises the bar. Before you ask, the patties aren’t made of yams - just regular beef. You’ll find Yamburger amid the chaos of the San Juan streets - it’s a completely outdoor venue, with a covered bar and seating area, and the atmosphere is fun and inviting. They’ve got a variety of beers and food that ranges from ribs to egg rolls but are most well known for their creative and delicious burgers (which come with the Yamburger design printed on the bun)! I’ll never forget the brunch burger I had here…
Address: 1104 Roosevelt Ave. Ponce de Leon, Miramar, San Juan, Puerto Rico
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4. El Jibarito in Old San Juan
Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing
If you’re looking for some authentic Puerto Rican food, El Jibarito comes highly recommended. Inside, the walls reflect the color and culture of the streets of Old San Juan, and the staff is friendly (though you should keep island time in mind.) Mofongo, fried plantains and sweet plantain pie, seafood and yellow rice, leaf cake, tostones, and other examples of “Cocina Criolla”, or Creole cuisine, are guaranteed to leave your taste buds satisfied.
Address: 280 Calle Sol, Old San Juan, San Juan, 00901, Puerto Rico
Facebook: El Jibarito
5. El Alambique in San Juan
Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account
I especially enjoyed this little seaside dive. It’s right across from Isla Verde, one of San Juan’s beaches, and offers half indoor, half outdoor seating. No matter where you sit, you’ve got a view of the beach and the ocean. They have a lot of seafood options, especially shrimp and crab legs, as well as some American-style food, and a large selection of beers. I had the fish tacos, which came highly recommended, and opted for their coconut rice, both of which receive a double thumbs up, from me!
Address: 5806 Calle Tartak Cond.Racquet Club, Isla Verde, Carolina 00979-5617, Puerto Rico
Facebook: El Alambique
6. Ocean View Restaurant in Fajardo
Another outdoor seaside restaurant, this place lives up to its name. It was recommended to my family and I, after we visited Las Cabezas Nature reserve, so it’s a popular spot in Fajardo. They specialize in seafood and the classic Puerto Rican mofongo and there’s plenty to choose from. This is where I got my first taste of mofongo, with a side of fried plantains!
Ocean View Restaurant
Address: 987 State Road, Las Croabas, Fajardo, Puerto Rico
7. El Quenepo on Isla de Vieques
El Quenepo is a popular restaurant on the island of Vieques, right on the beach. They pride themselves on their open air atmosphere, where you may be able to catch the sound of street music and horses and their Caribbean island cuisine. They have lots of fish and other seafood entrées, pasta, and other meats such as steaks, pork, and lamb. They have a handful of decadent desserts, as well as an extensive wine and cocktail list.
Address: 148 Calle Flamboyan, Esperanza, Vieques 00765-4005, Puerto Rico
Website: El Quenepo
8. Pasta y Pueblo in Luquillo
The atmosphere and the food here have nothing but positive reviews. Though it may take some time to get a table, due to its popularity, happy visitors say it’s well worth the wait. A signature bread and a variety of delicious pasta and seafood to the evening entertainment of live music and the sound of the ocean nearby, seem to be the allure here. The salmon over coconut rice is the most recently recommended, by many.
Pasta y Pueblo
Address: Calle 14 de Julio, P.O. Box 1773, Luquillo 00773, Puerto Rico
Facebook: Pasta y Pueblo
9. CLMDO in Isabela
This award-winning restaurant has an ever-changing menu and prides itself on using local, organic ingredients. The atmosphere is bright, and so is the food. Because of how often the menu changes, there’s no menu on their website, but if you’re ever in Isabela, you’ve got to give this place a try. They host plenty of events, so check their blog, and they are also known for their music. Needless to say, CLMDO is a never-ending surprise.
Address: 114 Calle Manuel Corchado Juarbe, Isabela 00662-2639, Puerto Rico
10. Lola in Ponce
No hay nada mejor que visitar a Lola un sábado junto a toda la familia. ¡Te esperamos!Posted by Lola Eclectic Cuisine on Saturday, 12 November 2016
A little on the classier side, Lola Eclectic Cuisine certainly has an eclectic menu. It features a bit of an international blend, from Caribbean fusion seafood and meats to Criolla and other Puerto Rican dishes and even a kids menu - it may be hard to choose what to eat here! There’s also a bar area, and the atmosphere is hard to beat. Just in case you don’t believe me, I should mention it received a Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence.
Address: 101–115 Calle Reina Ponce, PR, Ponce, 00730, Puerto Rico
A taste of island life
No matter what part of the island you’re on, there’s good food to be found. Whether you want traditional Puerto Rican cuisine, a dish from home or a combination of both, Puerto Rico’s got it - not to mention all the spectacular coffee. If you want to immerse yourself in Puerto Rican culture, I’d start with the food.
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