Top Choice European in San José

Park Café

At this felicitous fusion of antique shop and French restaurant, Michelin-starred chef Richard Neat offers an exquisite degustation menu featuring smaller sampling plates (Spanish tapas–style) and a carefully curate…
Top Choice Steak in La Fortuna

Benedictus Steakhouse

Turn off the highway and drive about 1km up a steep, rough dirt road to arrive at this spectacularly situated steak house (tricky to find in the dark, so arrive before the sun goes down). You’ll be rewarded with a g…
Top Choice International in Nuevo Arenal

Gingerbread Hotel & Restaurant

Don’t miss the chance to eat at one of the best restaurants in northwestern Costa Rica. Chef Eyal is the larger-than-life, New York–trained Israeli chef who turns out transcendent meals from the freshest local fare.…
Top Choice Italian in Playa Cocles, Playa Chiquita and Punta Uva

La Pecora Nera

If you splurge for a single fancy meal during your trip, do it at this romantic eatery run by Ilario Giannoni. On a lovely, candlelit patio, deftly prepared Italian seafood and pasta dishes are served alongside unus…
Top Choice Cafe in El Castillo

La Ventanita

La Ventanita refers to the ‘little window’ at Kelly’s house where you place your order. Soon enough, you’ll be devouring the best burrito or chifrijo (rice and pinto beans with fried pork and capped with fresh tomat…
Top Choice Latin American in Montezuma

Cocina Clandestina

The secret is out. The hottest new restaurant in Montezuma is this awesome, artistic place in the trees at the butterfly gardens. Look for innovative takes on Central American standards, such as daily changing taco …
Top Choice Cafe in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Como en mi Casa Art Café

Owned by a friendly bohemian expat couple, this charming vegetarian cafe makes everything from scratch, from the jams to the hot sauces to the gluten-free pancakes. The walls are covered in local art and 10% of the …
Top Choice Breakfast in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Bread & Chocolate

Ever had a completely homemade PB&J (bread, peanut butter and jelly all made from scratch)? That and more can be yours at this dream of a gluten-lover's cafe.
Top Choice Japanese in Mal País & Santa Teresa


Koji Hyodo's sushi shack is a twinkling beacon of fresh, raw excellence. The atmosphere and service are superior, of course, but his food is a higher truth. The grilled octopus is barely fried and sprinkled with sea…
Top Choice Mexican in Alajuela

Jalapeños Central

Offering the best Tex-Mex in the country, this popular, 11-table spot will introduce some much-needed spice into your diet. The simple and fresh burritos, chimichangas and enchiladas come in a meal deal or on their …