There is no shortage of places to eat while visiting Puerto Rico but there are some places that have definitely become our favorite. The restaurant scene varies depending on where you stay on the island. So, we wanted to focus on the main areas of San Juan and Condado where most tourists will visit and stay at.
Condado is our go-to spot to stay at while visiting Puerto Rico and if you want to learn more definitely see our go-to itinerary while visiting Puerto Rico.
Absolute number 1 spot for traditional Puerto Rican meals. we always have to start with the fresh ceviche served with tostones and for the main dish, Their Shrimp mofongo is our go to. Sitting outside is a must to get the full experience with the view of the ocean, the waves crashing on the rocks are mesmerizing, and it is a quieter area. This is one of the few spots in Condado that has dining essentially on the beach since the outside patio stretches over the water to offer a very unique dining experience.
One of the biggest selling points is also just how affordable all the food is and how big the portions are. We never miss a chance to visit Waikiki, and usually have to go more than once, and cannot recommend it enough.
Wicked Lilly also faces the ocean, and has a stairway to the beach. The restaurant is attached to a small hotel so if you are looking for lodging definitely give them a look. The food is a fusion of several different styles and is really delicious – like practically licking your plate. Their cocktails are flavorful and they have a nice variety of drinks for everyone.
If you are looking to host an event while in town then Wicked Lily is a great choice since they do have a second floor that works as a private event space. If you have a bigger party, you are able to even book the entire restaurant and customize your entire menu!
Bodegar Wine and Tapas
This place is a little hidden as it is on the rooftop of a couple of different restaurants. It is more of a wine/cocktail bar with some tapas with a Puerto Rican flare. We enjoyed a mixed platter of appetizers followed by a modern take on a Puerto Rican classic of arroz and gandules with pernil and tostones (aka. rice with chickpeas)
The outdoor seating looks over the main street, Ashford, and you can enjoy some good people watching and listening to the music blasting from the cars sitting in traffic.
We first heard about this place on Zac Efron’s documentary on Netflix (Down to Earth – highly recommend for any traveling foodie!). We were so excited that we were able to make a reservation through OpenTable. The cosmopolitan restaurant serving innovative tasting menus, wine pairings & cocktails offers unique bites that can be turned into a 4, 5, or 6-course meal. We of course did the full 6-course meal (each course has 3 options except for dessert), with an individual wine pairing for each dish.
Cocina Abierta is definitely not your typical Puerto Rican restaurant but you are trying to be adventurous and try something different we loved our experience there.
This spot is off of La Concha Hotel, one of our favorite hotels in Puerto Rico and serves some delicious calamari, pizza, and pretty much anything you could want. It is more Italian-style food, so not the place to go to find local food, but it is delicious!
They also have a great drink menu, we particularly love their Serafina Champagne which includes champagne, vodka, elderflower, fresh strawberries. Trust us, it is delicious!
Panaderia Kasalta – San Juan Puerto Rico
If you are able to drive or take a quick Uber, we highly recommend Panaderia Kasalta to be on your list of must-do stops. Gus cannot miss a chance to visit one of his favorite breakfast spots in Puerto Rico and for good reasons.
Kasalta is an old-school local panaderia, for those who have never been to a place like this it resembles sort of a breakfast shop that most locals will stop at on their way to work. Gus loved visiting Kasalta when he was younger and missed their food every day when first moving to Texas.
The “taste of home” for Gus is tostadas (butter and toast in local bread), sandwich de pernil (pork sandwich), and croquetas (deep-fried breaded dumplings).
Not only does Gus love this spot but President Barack Obama actually made this one of his stops while visiting Puerto Rico during his presidency.
Puerto Rico has no shortage of places to eat and half the fun is exploring the island and stumbling into a new restaurant. We love the places mentioned above for their close proximity to Condado and walkability. We do need to mention if you have the ability to drive or Uber then just how we mentioned in our Ultimate Puerto Rico Itinerary, a drive to Pinones, Santurce, and Luquillo is a must for truly local street food.