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Just around the corner from La Siesta where I was staying, ChocoMuseo was the first thing that I came across on the way to Parque Central on my first day in Granada. ChocoMuseo is part of Hotel Spa Granada where you also find ChocoMuseo shop and Choco Café. In the morning they offer all you can eat buffet breakfast and I was pleasantly surprised by a great sellection of yummy food. As I already had breakfast in my hotel I made sure not to miss it the next morning.
On the buffet you find fresh fruit juices, fresh fruits, granola, home made yogurt, white cheese, sweet fried plantains, tortillas, integral bread, banana bread, home made jams, Mombacho honey, Gallo pinto. They make eggs and omlettes any style with your choice of: ham, cheese, tomatoes and peppers; pancakes, crepes and waffels with your choice of: bananas, pineapple and chocolate. For drink you can choose between coffee and tea, but surprisingly, chocolate drinks are not included. These you have to pay separately.
You sit in the spacious garden patio which is nice in the morning. Lovely, full of pleasant atmosphere, it was my favourite place for breakfast in Granada.
Favorite Dish: I usually started with fresh fruit juice and a bowl of fruits with granola and yogurt, followed by tortilla, white cheese, fried plantains and a cup of organic coffee with milk. Another of my choice was waffel and crepes with banana and chocolate which were made to order and served at the table. Everything was very yummy! I just kept sampling until I was totally full ;)
Breakfast was 5 $ (5,75 $ with the tax) - December 2010.
Updated Feb 5, 2011
Address: Calle Atravesada
Phone: +505 2552 4678
Named after a legendary character of Salvadoran folklore, El Cipitío – Pupuseria Salvadoreña is a simple place offering a favourite snack of El Salvador, pupusas. There are two tables on the pavement by the restaurant. But because of the busy traffic of Calle Real Xalteva I decided to sit inside. As the name suggests, the place specializes on pupusas which are made all the time. I was happy to found that they also had a good selection of fresh fruit juices. All together, this made a nice place for an afternoon break.
Pupusas are traditional Salvadoran dish, similar to corn tortilla, only thicker, stuffed with cheese, pork, squash or refried beans. They are similar to Colombian arepas and Mexican gorditas but the ingredients vary. The pupusa recipe uses masa harina (fine ground cornmeal flour made from dry hominy) instead of usual corn flour. The two most common pupusas are the pupusa de queso (they usually a soft cheese called Quesillo) and pupusa revuelta with mixed ingredients of cheese, beans and pork. Pupusas are served with tomato salsa and curtido (lightly fermented cabbage slaw with red chillies and vinegar). They are generally eaten by hand.
Favorite Dish: I had pupusa de queso which so much reminded me of delicious Colombian arepas. It was nicely warm and cheesy, and it tasted really good. At that moment I could not think of any better choice than a glass of freshly made orange juice to accompany the meal.
What a simple but tasty snack! And it was only 30 cordobas (pupusa 15 cordobas and orange juice 15 cordobas) – December 2010.
Updated Jan 29, 2011
Address: Calle Real Xalteva
Located in a green building on La Calzada, the O'Shea's Irish Pub and Restaurant offers the best and coldest beers of Granada which you can enjoy in the bar or out on the sidewalk. You can choose between inexpensive local beer Toña and Victoria and quite expensive Guinness. Large quantities of good food is available all day. Along with colcannon (traditional Irish dish made from mashed potatoes, kale or cabbage) you can get what is reported to be the best Fish & Chips in Central America. Also try the finger food on its menu, considered by many the best in town, especially the fish-fingers. And that's not all. O'Shea's Irish Pub also has the greatest selection of fresh fruit juices. This was the reason of my many visits.
After moving to Granada in 2007 Dubliner Tommy Griffin opened up a juice bar which he expanded to a pub/restaurant in late 2008. Now he has a flourishing business drowing both tourists as well as locals. On Wednesday nights he also make quiz games for the customers to have fun and learn about the history, art, culture... There is a big chance you'll encounter hospitable Tommy. It seems he's always there, enjoying chatting with his customers.
Favorite Dish: It was delightful surprise to find such an amazing selection of smoothies and juice mixtures. I usually had Exotic, the most delicious juice mixture made from mango, papaya, pineapple and orange juice (45 cordobas - December 2010). One night I opted for a big portion of fruit salad. It consisted of papaya, passion fruit, melon, watermelon and banana, served with yogurt (55 cordobas – December 2010). An expensive treat for Nicaraguan standards but well worth for the quality.
Updated Jan 30, 2011
Address: Calle La Calzada
El Tercer Ojo is located right in front of the Convento San Francisco. Unique in style, where the Mediterranean mixes with Asia and an immense combination of colours, it's a mystical place with nice music and relaxed atmosphere. A bohemian lounge and bar is decorated in Bali style, with comfortable sofas to chill out, read a book and listen to the music while sipping a coffee. A lounge area leads out to an attractive patio dining area that seems to be quite popular, especially in the evening.
One of the best things about eating at El Tercer Ojo is their varied menu, with a wide range of authentic flavours from all corners of the world. It offers a Fusion Cuisine that includes Spanish tapas (such as tapenade, smoked salmon or grilled eggplant on toasted bread), French crepes and Italian pastas, sushi (every Tuesday night), Thai and Hindi dishes. Mains include pastas, vegetarian dishes, seafood, chicken, shish kebab and grilled meat. It also offers a menu with 18 different salads so that you can make your best choice. Appealing deserts are on offer for those who have room after the generous main.
El Tercer Ojo offers free Wi-Fi access to customers and an interesting selection of books for sale in different languages. Artwork and furniture can also be purchased there. Sometimes they also organize concerts with music that fit on the ambience. It's definitely an interesting and agreeable place to visit during the day or enjoy an evening drink, as well as to dine on attractively presented and good quality food. The service is good, the staff friendly and the overall feel is very inviting.
more pics in the travelogue
Favorite Dish: It's was my favourite restaurant and during my stay in Granada I visited two times. First time I was here for lunch. It was too hot for the main so I opted for one of theirs salads, lettuce with gorgonzola, and had a delicious fresh juice mixture with the food.
The second time I was here with my Slovenian friend Petra and two Canadian guys. It was kind of goodbye dinner until some two weeks later we met again for Christmas. We started our meal with pumpkin soup and for the main we chose different dishes. I had salad with lettuce, tofu and mushrooms and Petra had lettuce with gorgonzola, while one of the guys opted for shrimp in curry and coconut pineapple sauce and the other grilled meat. We had a bottle of Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon wine to accompany this delicious meal.
The restaurant is not cheap for Nicaraguan standards. Actually, I thought it was rather expensive. But still, it was a great experience, worth visiting for the unique ambience and good food.
Updated Jan 31, 2011
Address: Calle El Arsenal
Phone: +505 2552 6451
Pedestrian Calle La Calzada is filled with bars and restaurants for all tastes and budgets. But generally, the area is more expensive than other parts of the city. Bar & Restaurante de Los Artistas immediately caught my attention. It was because of its name and also because of the saxophone picture at the entrance. They have a varied menu, from fusion cuisine, salads, tapas, Italian pasta, vegetarian dishes, seafood and meat dishes, and I thought there might be some cool music in the evening. Enough reasons to choose it for another dinner with Petra.
The restaurant has an outdoor sitting with a few tables overlooking the always lively La Calzada, a nice spot for people watching. The inside is rather spacious. There is a bar and a lounge area with paintings exhibition and occasional live music.
I can only say good things about the service. Our waiter Oscar gave us a good explanation about the dishes. He was friendly and professional. From time to time he stopped at our table and we had a nice chat. Later on, when I was staying in Hospedaje Café Ruíz, I often passed by and he always took his time to talk about the latest news.
Favorite Dish: While waiting for the food we were sipping a refreshing caipirinha (a Brazilian cocktail made with cachaça, lime and sugar). It did not take long until the food arrived. And, well, it looked very tempting. My choice was vegetable Thai curry. It was served in a clay bowl and came on a big plate, together with rice and mixed salad. Petra chose creamy ricotta and spinach tortellini.
Though not the cheapest option, we were both quite satisfied with the food. All in all, it was a very enjoyable evening.
Updated Jan 28, 2011
Address: Calle La Calzada
Phone: +505 8811 2442
Casa Bohemia is a mellow place not far from La Siesta where we were staying so one evening Petra and I decided to have dinner here. The low-lit front bar has a lot of stools and there's also a pretty courtyard. The food is served in both places. The kitchen in this large and airy colonial house makes some of the freshest meals in town. There's always a couple of vegetarian options on the menu. The atmosphere is laid back and friendly, with candles on the tables. The service was very slow. We were already pretty hungry so we almost gave up. But then the food finally arrived.
Favorite Dish: We both opted for vegetarian dishes. I choose tortilla with vegetables while Petra had pasta. Tortilla was filled with sweet pepper, tomato and, to my surprise, potato. The food was ok but nothing really special, and the portions were huge so we could not finish it all. We had fresh fruit juice to accompany the meal.
The bill came to around 200 cordobas (December 2010) which was good value for money.
Updated Jan 28, 2011
Address: Calle El Hormiguero
This colourful little restaurant away from the centre of town offers a 4-course menu for about 85 Cordobas ($6 US) from Tuesday to Friday only.
It's special because it doubles as a cooking school for teenagers who may otherwise have no opportunities to acquire skills to help them find employment. The master chef is no other than Sergio, the breakfast cook at "Another Night in Paradise". (See Accommodation tips).
The kids prepare and serve the food to the 25 or so guests who come every night. It's always full.
Favorite Dish: I had three meals at cafe Chavalos and I think my favourite items were the ceviche (raw marinated seafood) and the cream of mushroom soup. :-)
It's not truly what would qualify as a "fancy" restaurant, but compared to standard Nicaragua fare (rice, french fries, chicken/beef/fish, and plantain), it's definitely gourmet!
Updated Mar 27, 2004
This looks like a little hole in the wall (blink and you miss it) but it really expands inside.
A good place to try if you're vegetarian, or just looking for a change. They have about 12 different choice of vegetable dishes (including a nice coconut curied one). They also have chicken.
Quiet place with good service.
Favorite Dish: My favourite were the Asian-inspired veggie dishes and the ones with eggplant. Good chicken too.
Updated Mar 27, 2004
This is a small boutique hotel but they also have a restaurant in the courtyard, we had some really nice sandwiches and enjoyed the cooling fan above. Even though it is a Spanish colonial building the decor is Indonesian and it looks fantastic, the bar is lovely at night, very stylish. It looks very smart but a Cubra Libre is only C$15, just under a dollar. I had excellent Chicken Satay for dinner.
Updated Jul 25, 2005
Excellent food, Spanish cuisine with tables set around a beautiful courtyard with a fountain and candles. It is fairly expensive but worth a visit, I had garlic prawns and they were excellent. It has a very romantic ambience and the decor is stunning.
Updated Jul 25, 2005