35 Best Restaurants in Puerto Rico (2022)

Are you wondering which local restaurants you should check out while you’re in Puerto Rico?

If you’re like me, eating new foods is one of the highlights of any vacation.

In Puerto Rico, whether you plan on sunbathing at one of the island’s gorgeous beaches or hiking through El Yunque National Rainforest, you’re sure to work up an appetite. 

Because I don’t want you to go hungry during your stay, I put together this list of the 35 best places to grab a bite in Puerto Rico. 

 

1. Lechonera El Rancho Original / Cayey

A Puerto Rico vacation isn’t complete without a visit to a lechonera, where you can taste roasted pork straight from the spit.

The drive from San Juan to Lechonera El Rancho Original is about 45 minutes, but it is well worth the trip to enjoy some of the best food on the island.

You can either sit in the main dining area or at the family picnic area along a small creek. 

On the weekends, they have live music and dancing, which is when you’ll truly get to experience the unique essence of Puerto Rico. You’ll also have access to local artisan craft vendors nearby. 

El Rancho Original is about 25 minutes from Caguas, home to the Caguas Botanical and Cultural Garden and FOK Brewery.

image of a lechon image showing what Lechonera El Rancho looks like

 

2. Casa Vieja / Ciales

If you’re looking to escape the bustle of the metropolitan area, relax at Casa Vieja, a Puerto Rican kitchen tucked away in the Ciales mountains. 

Here, you’ll find traditional Puerto Rican food, a welcoming atmosphere, and a seriously remarkable view.

They often feature local talent as live entertainment, so it’s worth checking their social media pages for upcoming events. 

From San Juan, it’ll take about an hour and fifteen minutes to get there. Parking is available in front of the restaurant.

image of the food in Casa Vieja image showing what Casa Vieja looks like

 

3. La Casita Blanca / Santurce

La Casita Blanca, unsurprisingly, is a homey restaurant within a little white house. The plentiful foliage and informal decor will make you feel like you’re sitting up to supper at your Abuela’s house.

With hefty portions of their savory dishes, you’ll be fed like you’re at Abuela’s house too.

Another reason to love La Casita Blanca–complimentary codfish fritters and soup will be dropped off at your table once you’ve been seated. 

La Casita Blanca is not centrally located in the major tourist district. Instead, it sits in a residential area of Santurce, but don’t let that dissuade you.

The restaurant is only about a mile and a half from local hotspot Lote 23. 

Even though La Casita Blanca is not a fancy restaurant, they offer valet parking, which I recommend using. Finding street parking can be a challenge.

image of the food in La Casita Blanca image showing what La Casita Blanca looks like

 

4. José Enrique / Condado

José Enrique Restaurant is the namesake for one of the island’s most famous chefs.

The restaurant’s exterior could easily be mistaken for someone’s home, but if you’re in the know enough to stop in, the food will blow you away. 

If you want to taste the best food Puerto Rico has to offer, I recommend making a reservation in advance. 

José Enrique is situated right next to a paid outdoor parking lot.

From the restaurant, you can easily walk over to the Condado Lagoon to rent paddleboards or bicycles, or just sit in the sand drinking rum out of a coconut.

image of the food in José Enrique image showing what José Enrique looks like

 

5. Bacoa Finca + Fogón / Juncos

Bacoa Finca + Fogón is a relatively new Puerto Rican restaurant inside a refurbished farmhouse hidden away in the Juncos countryside.

Three chefs work together to provide their own creative take on traditional Puerto Rican food. 

Reservations are required and can be made on their website here: https://bacoapr.com/en/#section-reservations

Bacoa is less than an hour from San Juan. It is approximately 25 minutes from El Charco Hippie, a remote waterfall and swimming hole well known by locals. 

image of the food in Bacoa Finca image of the food in Bacoa Finca image showing what Bacoa Finca looks like

 

6. Cocina Abierta / Condado

Cocina Abierta is the top high-end vegetarian culinary experience in the Condado area.

This popular restaurant offers three lavish six-course menus: vegetarian, pescatarian, and carnivore.

With each menu, you can opt for the corresponding wine pairing. Cocina Abierta is the foodie traveler’s dream. 

Located on Caribe Street, just off Ashford Ave, you can easily walk to dinner from a number of nearby beachfront hotels. If you’d rather drive, valet parking is available.

image of the food in Cocina Abierta image of the food in Cocina Abierta image showing what Cocina Abierta looks like

 

7. Jota / Isabela

Jota restaurant is located at Royal Isabela luxury resort.

The exterior stone design is gorgeous, and the atmosphere will make you feel as if you’ve been whisked away to an island paradise.

Chef Jeremy is famous for his use of local ingredients, and the menu features dishes from wagyu ravioli to more traditional Puerto Rican cuisines.

Jota is the perfect dining affair for a special event or to simply indulge while on vacation. 

You can dine inside or outside. You won’t be disappointed either way. Reservations are recommended. 

During your stay at Royal Isabela, you can play eighteen holes on a stunning golf course along the ocean cliffs. Just try not to hit your ball into the water because you definitely won’t be getting it back.

  image of the food in Jota image showing what Jota looks like

 

8. Chef’s Creations / Ponce

Chef’s Creations in Ponce takes classic meals and cooks them to perfection.

With over 25 years of culinary experience, Chef Jorge Rivera has participated in multiple TV shows and competitions around the world. 

The restaurant has a classy rustic feel with outdoor patio seating. It’s just an overall great atmosphere for tasting local food and even offers a daily vegan dish.

This is not a place you want to skimp on dessert, so save room.

A five-minute walk away, you can pay a visit to Parque de Bombas, the site of Puerto Rico’s first fire station, which has been converted into a small museum.

image of the food in Chef’s Creations image showing what Chef’s Creations looks like

 

9. Casa Linda Panoramic Restaurant / Añasco

As soon as you arrive at Casa Linda, you’ll notice the view of the mountains.

With the exterior terrace dining, you’ll feel like you’re sitting atop a jungle treehouse.

You’ll even be able to spot the ocean while you enjoy a cup of Puerto Rican coffee and chow down on the local cuisine. 

Casa Linda has a diverse menu and is an excellent option for family dining. Parking is available directly in front of the restaurant.

If you’re staying in the Rincón area, you can get to Casa Linda in about 15-25 minutes.

image of the food in Casa Linda image showing what Casa Linda looks like

 

10. Tavola Trattoria Local / Condado

Tavola is easy to miss if you’re walking down Ashford Ave, but it’s my favorite restaurant in Condado for several reasons.

Primarily, the food is outrageously delicious. Their Creamy Truffle Mac is the best mac and cheese I’ve ever tasted. 

Tavola has a dog-friendly outdoor patio, but if you choose to sit inside, ask for the back room.

The host will take you to a vending machine against the wall and pull it open to reveal a doorway, like some sort of Scooby Doo mystery mansion.

Inside, the room has the feel of a funky, exclusive club, but the staff is very welcoming, so you’ll feel like a member. 

There is no parking onsite, but there are several paid outdoor lots along Ashford Ave, only a few minutes away.

If you walk down Tavola’s adjacent side street, you’ll land right on Condado Beach.

image of the food in Tavola Trattoria Local image of the food in Tavola Trattoria Local image showing what Tavola Trattoria looks like

 

11. La Sombra – Longanizas Doña María / Orocovis

Located in Orocovis, La Sombra is well off the beaten path.

But don’t let that stop you from venturing to the center of the island to try their famous longanizas, or Spanish sausages.

The hour-and-a-half drive from San Juan takes you through the mountains, and the view from the restaurant is scenic as well. 

La Sombra makes six different types of longanizas, and you can try them all.

On their menu, they offer a variety of massive combination platters that serve up to eight people. If you prefer, you can order a mofongo stuffed with any of their longanizas. 

Seating is casual, and parking is available onsite. 

If you want to check out a local brewery while you’re in the area, Cacique Brewing Company is only seven minutes away.

image of the the longaniza   image showing what La Sombra looks like

 

12. Marmalade / Old San Juan 

Do you hate trying to pick just one dish off the menu?

Marmalade offers five courses and an optional wine pairing. The five courses include an appetizer, intermediate, entrée, ambrosial dessert, and liquid dessert. 

For larger groups of six or more, you’ll enjoy a fourteen-course tasting menu. That’s fourteen different delicious flavor combinations. Need I say more? 

Marmalade is a fine dining experience, so it is on the expensive side, with five-course experiences costing $129 per person. Make your reservation in advance. 

From the restaurant’s location on Fortaleza Street, you’ll be within walking distance of all shopping and nightlife in Old San Juan.

image of the food in Marmalade image showing what Marmalade looks like

 

13. La Estación / Fajardo

You may think you know barbeque, but you haven’t tried La Estación’s Nuyorican-style barbeque.

They use local Puerto Rican ingredients and spices to create unique flavors that you just have to try. 

The building has been converted from an old gas station and gives off trendy tiki vibes.

The seductive smell of smoked meat is overwhelming in the best way. If you’re in Fajardo, do whatever you need to arrange your schedule to make time for La Estación. 

The restaurant does take walk-ins, but I recommend making a reservation.

Parking is available. La Estación’s location makes it easy to get to from the Bioluminescent Bay, the Vieques/Culebra ferries, and Hotel Conquistador.

image of the food in La Estación image showing what La Estación looks like

 

14. Mario Pagán Restaurant / Condado 

If you’re looking for someplace upscale, Mario Pagán Restaurant offers a fine dining experience in the central Condado area.

With its chic atmosphere, fantastic food, and great service, Mario Pagán is the total package.

I recommend making a reservation to secure your table as this area is a hotspot for evening dining. 

Valet parking is available at the restaurant.

If you plan on spending the evening in the area, there is a paid parking garage nearby on Ashford Avenue, fifteen minutes walking or five minutes driving.

The restaurant is located on Magdalena Ave, which forks off Ashford Ave, a popular street for nightlife. After eating, you’ll be a short five-minute walk from Casino del Mar on Ashford Ave.

image of the food in Mario Pagán image of the food in Mario Pagán image showing what Mario Pagán looks like

 

15. El Quenepo / Vieques 

If you choose to visit Vieques, I recommend dining at El Quenepo on the island’s south coast.

You’ll experience fine dining in a quaint, romantic setting. The diverse menu features fresh local seafood and mouth-watering desserts.

The seating is inside, but the open doors provide a comfortable flow of ocean air.

It is less than a ten-minute walk to the charming Esperanza Beach.

image of the food in El Quenepo image showing what El Quenepo looks like

 

16. Casa Bavaria / Morovis 

You probably didn’t plan on going to a German restaurant in Puerto Rico, but you should!

At Casa Bavaria, you can try authentic German schnitzel, bratwurst, and more while taking in the beautiful Morovis mountain scenery.

Don’t leave without ordering one of their delicious homemade desserts. 

Casa Bavaria is only open Thursday through Sunday, so plan accordingly. 

Pair your trip to Casa Bavaria with a ziplining excursion at Toro Verde Adventure Park, which is only about ten minutes away.

image of the food in Casa Bavaria image showing what Casa Bavaria looks like

 

17. Bottles / Guaynabo

Bottles in Guaynabo is a fine dining experience.

While you wait for your table, you can browse the restaurant’s perimeter, which is lined with an enormous selection of bottles of wine for purchase. 

The menu is updated often, containing entrees like Lobster Risotto and the Australian Rack of Lamb.

If you’re not too stuffed after your main course, I highly recommend you order the Banana Fosters for Two. 

Valet parking is available onsite. The San Patricio shopping mall is less than half a mile away.

image of a wine and steak image showing what Bottles looks like

 

18. Caficultura / Old San Juan 

At Caficultura, you can enjoy breakfast or lunch in the historic Plaza Colón. The cafe is designed in the style of a classic Old San Juan apartment and offers indoor and outdoor seating. 

Here, you can try a Mallorca sandwich, a local classic, sprinkled with powdered sugar.

For coffee lovers, Caficultura is a must-visit. 

When you’re finished, explore the colorful Old San Juan architecture and abundant shopping.

The National Historic Spanish Fort, El Morro, is a scenic ten-minute walk away.

image of the food in Caficultura image of the food in Caficultura image showing what Caficultura looks like

 

19. Lote 23 Gastronomic Park / Santurce

If you’re looking for a laid-back place to grab a bite to eat and hang out for a while, head to Lote 23, or Lot 23, in Santurce.

This trendy outdoor dining location features multiple kiosks, so you can walk around and taste a little of everything. You can even order cocktails from a refurbished Airstream trailer. 

There are plenty of tables for outdoor seating and a stage that sometimes hosts local entertainment. 

A six-minute walk will get you to The Museum of Art of Puerto Rico, and a twelve-minute walk will land you in La Placita, a local nightlife hub featuring bars and dance clubs.

image of the food in Lote 23 image of the food in Lote 23 image showing what Lote 23 Gastronomic Park looks like

 

20. Bistro Café / Isla Verde

If you love brunch and big portions, you need to check out Bistro Café.

You can order massive stacks of pancakes, colossal omelets, and elaborate specialty coffee drinks.

Located on Isla Verde Avenue, Bistro Café is a five-minute walk from the beach.

Bistro Café is a popular local spot, so make sure you get there early to avoid a long wait and to have plenty of time to look through their extensive menu.

image of a coffee drinks image showing what Bistro Café looks like

 

21. Lolita’s Mexican Food / Fajardo

Imagine a plate of nachos where each freshly baked chip is individually loaded with toppings.

At Lolita’s, you can finally enjoy the nachos of your dreams. Large plates, reasonable prices, and great service make this a great option if you are in the Fajardo area. 

Located on Highway 3, it is only a few miles from El Conquistador Resort and Laguna Grande, one of Puerto Rico’s most popular bioluminescent bays for kayaking tours.

image of the food in Lolita’s Mexican Food image showing what Lolita’s Mexican Food looks like

 

22. La Cambija / Rincón 

La Cambija is a lowkey open-air restaurant with picnic table seating, but don’t let its unassuming appearance fool you.

La Cambija serves up some of the best seafood on the west coast. They’ve got fresh fish filets, fish tacos, and even fish pinchos.

This is the perfect option if you want to eat five-star tasting seafood on a comfortable budget. 

While you won’t have an ocean view while you dine, it’s only a five-minute walk down to the water.

image of the food in La Cambija image of the food in La Cambija image showing what La Cambija looks like

 

23. The English Rose / Rincón

If you’re looking for a British-inspired luxurious hilltop brunch spot where you can enjoy mimosa flights, The English Rose is a must.

They serve breakfast/brunch and lunch all week at reasonable prices. 

If you’d like to stay, you can reserve one of The English Rose’s five unique guest rooms.

On Saturdays, you can call ahead and purchase a day pass over the phone, so you can spend the afternoon lounging around the poolside. 

Maria’s Beach and Domes Beach are both a five-minute drive away.

image of the food in The English Rose image showing what The English Rose looks like

 

24. Passiflora Cocina Vegana / Rincón

Passiflora serves up colorful Instagram-worthy vegan dishes half a mile away from Rincon’s Playa Doña Lala Beach.

But you don’t have to be a vegan to enjoy their loaded fries or one-of-a-kind cheesecakes. 

The restaurant is in the Centro La Paz building, which offers yoga classes, massages, and more, making it the perfect spot for a day of complete relaxation. 

Passiflora is open Wednesday through Sunday.

image of the food in Passiflora Cocina Vegana image showing what Passiflora Cocina Vegana looks like

 

25. El Cerro de Juaco / Rincón

El Cerro de Juaco is only open on Saturdays, but if you’re in Rincón for the weekend, you should check out the family-style lechonera.

What better way to experience authentic Puerto Rican food than with a panoramic island vista?

Seating is outdoors, and you’ll have a view of the beach, which is a fifteen-minute drive away. Plenty of parking is available onsite.

  image of the food in El Cerro de Juaco image showing what El Cerro de Juaco looks like

 

26. The Beach House / Rincón

The Beach House boasts freshly caught seafood from the Rincón harbor.

Many diners go for the food but stay for the live music and vibrant evening ambiance. The Beach House provides lawn chairs for its visitors to watch the sunset.

You can even spot the small island of Desecheo from the dining patio. 

From the restaurant, you can walk down to the beach or head into Downtown Rincón, which is about a mile and a half away.

Room reservations are available at The Beach House’s boutique guesthouse.

image of drinks image showing what The Beach House looks like

 

27. La Marina de Rancho / Arecibo

Dos Bocas Lake is about an hour and fifteen minutes from the San Juan area, and if you are willing to make the drive, you can enjoy tapas and drinks along the water at La Marina de Rancho.

You can either park at Dos Bocas Lake Marina or board a boat from El Embarcadero dock, which will also take you to the restaurant. 

Cueva Ventana, a popular hiking tour, is about fifteen minutes away.

image of the food in La Marina de Rancho image showing what La Marina de Rancho looks like

 

28. Buena Vibra Bar & Tapas / Cabo Rojo 

If you’re staying in the Cabo Rojo area, Buena Vibra Bar & Tapas should be on your list.

The open-air restaurant encompasses the relaxing island vacation vibes you were fantasizing about when you booked your flight to Puerto Rico.

With great Puerto Rican food, tropical drinks, and friendly service, the experience will make you want to extend your stay. 

If you are willing to make the 37-minute drive down to the southwest corner of the island, I highly recommend the walk up to Cabo Rojo Lighthouse. The cliffside ocean view is gorgeous, and you can access Playa Sucia, a remote sandy beach.

image of the food in Buena Vibra image showing what  Buena Vibra looks like

 

29. Deaverdura / Old San Juan

Deaverdura is a casual restaurant in Old San Juan that serves some of the best authentic Puerto Rican food in the area.

The Puerto Rican Sampler is a popular menu item, but really, you can’t go wrong with anything you order here. 

On the weekends, Deaverdura can fill up, and there is limited seating, so either visit outside of peak dining hours or be prepared to wait.

It’s located on the corner of Calle de la Cruz and Calle Sol. If you walk one block up the hill, you’ll find a variety of popular bars on Calle de San Sebastián.

image of the food in Deaverdura image showing what  Deaverdura looks like

 

30. Panadería España / Isla Verde

This popular Isla Verde bakery is always packed with both visitors and locals.

At Panadería España, you can order a delicious deli sandwich, colorful pastries, or a heaping plate of paella.

This is the perfect spot for the sweet tooth wanting to try a fresh quesito.

To order, you’ll need to walk up to the counter.

Their cafeteria-style seating is well suited for the constant flow of customers. The panaderia’s parking is limited, but it is usually possible to find a spot.

image of the food in Panadería España image of the food in Panadería España image showing what Panadería España looks like

 

31. Ocean Lab Brewing Co. / Carolina

Interested in visiting one of Puerto Rico’s most famous breweries? 

Ocean Lab Brewing Co. is collocated with Vivo Beach Club on Carolina Beach. Ocean Lab offers upstairs seating in their outdoor taproom.

The menu is small, but you’ll love their guava bbq glazed chicken wings and surf & turf tacos. 

You can order a flight to sample their selection of beers on tap.

I highly recommend the Ocean Mambo (passionfruit), Blood Orange Blonde, and Ocean Blue (blueberry). 

To get there, you’ll pass through the front gate and park in the paid lot. During your visit, you can play a game of beach volleyball with friends.

Beach access is available from the same parking lot.

  image of the food in Ocean Lab Brewing Co. image showing what Ocean Lab Brewing Co. looks like

 

32. Luquillo Kiosks 

Along Luquillo Beach, which is on the northeast side of the island, you’ll find a strip of about sixty kiosks.

The different vendors sell food, drinks, and souvenirs.

This is a great option if you want to try a variety of local favorites, including empanadillas (turnovers), bacalaítos (fried cod fritters), surullitos (corn sticks), chicharrones (fried pork), and many others. 

Plenty of parking is available in front of the kiosks. If you plan on spending the day at Luquillo Beach or hiking in El Yunque National Rainforest (fifteen minutes away), make sure to add Luquillo Kiosks stop to your list.

  image of the food in Luquillo Kiosks  image showing what Luquillo Kiosks looks like

 

33. Alambique Beach Lounge / Isla Verde 

Alambique Beach Lounge is a local restaurant situated along Isla Verde Beach.

If you go early in the day, you can enjoy their brunch menu. In addition to good food, they’ve got a full bar with a great cocktail selection. 

Alambique is located in Jose. M Tartak Avenue, accessible from Isla Verde Avenue if you turn towards the beach at the intersection with the CVS Pharmacy.

There is no parking lot, but there is street parking available nearby.

In the evenings, Alambique does get a crowd, so you may experience long wait times and difficulty finding a parking spot. It’s worth splurging on an Uber.

  image of the food in Alambique Beach Lounge image showing what Alambique looks like

 

34. Denko Asian Eatery / San Juan 

If you’re looking to make the most of a night out, check out the T-Mobile District in San Juan.

You’ll find a collection of contemporary bars and restaurants, a movie theater, and an arcade. You can even take an aerial tour of the T-Mobile District from Toroverde’s urban ziplines. 

The area is worth visiting for the fun atmosphere alone, but I recommend making dinner reservations at Denko Asian Eatery.

Their menu includes sushi, noodle dishes, pretty cocktails, and boba tea. The best part: your food will be delivered to your table by their rocket ship conveyor belt system. 

T-Mobile District does get very crowded, and wait times for tables can be long, so definitely make a reservation if you plan on dining.

Paid parking is available at the lot on site.

image of the food in Denko Asian Eatery image of the food in Denko Asian Eatery image showing what Denko Asian Eatery looks like

 

35. Willy’s Pinchos / Guaynabo 

When my family comes to visit, I take them to Willy’s Pinchos.

Willy’s is an outdoor roadside bar and grill that cooks their pinchos, which are hefty meat kabobs, to perfection. 

If you go to Willy’s, don’t expect anything fancy.

It’s a casual place to hang out with friends and crack open a cold beer after playing eighteen holes at the Rio Bayamón Golf Course, which is 6 minutes away. Parking is available behind the restaurant.

image of the food in Willy’s Pinchos image showing what Willy’s Pinchos looks like

 

What are the top three restaurants in Puerto Rico?

Cocina Abierta, Bacoa Finca + Fogón, and José Enrique offer the best overall experience for enjoying the island’s local cuisine.

What are the best restaurants in Puerto Rico with a sea view?

Alambique Beach Lounge and the Luquillo Kiosks are great options for enjoying a meal by the ocean. For the best place to watch a seaside sunset, head to The Beach House in Rincon.

 

Final thoughts

In this article, I named the 35 best restaurants in Puerto Rico. 

If you’re looking for the most authentic Puerto Rican food, you should visit Lechonera El Rancho Original, Deaverdura, or Casa Vieja. 

If you’re looking to dine in a place with a lot of character, check out La Casita Blanca, Chef’s Creations, or La Estación. 

If you want to make the most of a night out, I recommend heading to Lote 23 Gastronomic Park or Denko in T-Mobile District for dinner and drinks. 

From fine dining to roadside kiosks, there are so many ways to sample the unique flavors the island has to offer. Don’t be afraid to go outside your comfort zone–McDonald’s will still be there when you get home!

If you are looking for fun activities to do during your vacation, then check out our article where we review the top 45 things to do in Puerto Rico.

Article by

Erin Reynolds

Writer at PuertoRico.com. After graduating from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, I was stationed on a patrol boat in Puerto Rico. I responded to Hurricane Irma and Maria, delivering relief supplies. Then, I worked as an Emergency Management Specialist, coordinating with local partners to develop contingency exercises. Now, I spend my time in Puerto Rico with my husband and two dogs, exploring the island and finding all the best things to do, which I share in my articles!

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