Yes, the brewpub has landed in Costa Rica. Stiefel’s, in Barrio Amón, and Agüizotes and the Casa Brew Garden in Barrio Escalante have everything you could want for a great night out: speakeasy lighting, good music and drinks ranging from stout to pilsner, made by local producers Perro Vida, Treintaycinco and the Costa Rica Craft Brewing Company.
Once you’ve whetted your appetite, when it comes to eats nothing is off the menu, whether from a restaurant or food truck.
Furca, in the Rohrmoser district, specialises in house-aged steaks – and “special” is the word for its prime rib with roasted ayote sauce. Tin Jo is an exceptional pan-Asian eatery, part Szechuan, Indonesian, Thai and Filipino, with many vegetarian choices. And at the Restaurante Grano de Oro, the French chef Francis Canal gives Costa Rican ingredients a European twist with delicious results. Dishes with a local accent yet a global outlook – such are the delights of the city. But no discussion of the Costa Rican food scene would be complete without taking a country trip out to the Caribbean coast.
The country staple, the dish that Ticos (aka Costa Ricans) serve for breakfast every single morning, is gallo pinto. Day-old beans and rice are pepped up with onions, celery, red peppers and coriander, and served with eggs, tortillas, fried plantains, the sour cream-like natilla, and the local condiment Salsa Lizano. Costa Rican pride in the dish has given rise to the saying: “Más tico que el gallo pinto” (“More Tico than gallo pinto”).