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San Juan

55 expert recommended restaurants

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Marmalade Restaurant & Wine Bar

93 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Eclectic fusion fare in Old San Juan. — Gayot

Marmalade was one of the first restaurants to bring real foodie recognition to Old San Juan more than a decade ago. — Lonely Planet

His fare is best experienced through the changing tasting menus with wine pairings. Groups can travel on a 15-course journey. — Frommer's

Peter Schintler, the U.S.-born owner-chef of Old San Juan's hippest—and finest—restaurant, apprenticed with Raymond Blanc and Gordon Ramsay. — Fodor's

The restaurant certainly looks the part of a late-night celeb hangout, with daybeds piled high with glimmering silk pillows, and a sculptural orange lantern that ribbons over the length of the ceiling. — Concierge

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Jose Enrique

91 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Discreetly hidden in a yellow house lacking a sign, you'll have no problems finding one of the hemisphere's best restaurants. — Lonely Planet

Neighborhood place near San Juan's La Placita. — Travel + Leisure

The changing daily menu is driven by the offerings at the adjacent fresh fruit and vegetable marketplace as well as what’s fresh from local fishermen. — Frommer's

The menu, on an eraser board, changes all the time, but crab fitters are a staple, as is the whole fried yellowtail snapper served over a root mash with avocado and papaya salsa. — Fodor's

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Verde Mesa

Seafood 89 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Hidden in plain sight amidst the tourist masses, this little gem of a restaurant is lauded for its vegetarian and seafood fare. — Lonely Planet

With punched-tin ceilings, mason-jar light fixtures, and eclectic decor inspired by Versailles, this vegetarian restaurant focuses on pleasing the senses. — Fodor's

Healthy eating is the focus here, but you likely won’t be concentrating on that as you tuck in to the refined, toothsome food prepared here. — Frommer's

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Pikayo

89 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Choose from scallops with piquillo peppers and corn emulsion, sauteed shrimp in a saffron broth, and onion-drenched bistec encebollado (beef stew). — Concierge

Wilo Benet is one of the island’s platoon of celebrity chefs. — Lonely Planet

A fusion of traditional Puerto Rican cuisine with international flavors inside The Condado Plaza Hilton. — Gayot

The latest incarnation of the Condado Plaza eatery has “pikadera” section with extensive hot and cold offerings; look here for appetizers or to make an entire meal tapas style. — Frommer's

Celebrity chef and Puerto Rico native Wilo Benet's flagship restaurant makes the most of its elegant surroundings at the Conrad San Juan Condado Plaza hotel. — Fodor's

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Pamela's

89 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

If you've always dreamed of fine dining for two right on the beach, only steps from where crashing waves meet the shore, head to this local favorite in Ocean Park. — Fodor's

Menu selections include the sundried tomato escabeche codfish and Caribbean spiced, guava rum glazed pork chop. — Travel + Leisure

Come to Pamela’s for the waterfront setting and a leisurely drink or tapas-style small plate. — Lonely Planet

This beachfront restaurant's perfect location is matched by its delicious offerings. — Frommer's

Like the Numero Uno Guest House, the hotel in which it's housed, Pamela's is both surprisingly high-end and reasonably affordable. — Concierge

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Santaella

88 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

One of San Juan's best restaurants, Santaella buzzes with excitement, inspired by the superb drinks at the bar and the sensational fare. — Lonely Planet

Eating here is a refined dining experience thanks to the gorgeous dining room, which is wrapped around a tropical garden in an interior courtyard. — Frommer's

Chef Santaella fuses local and international ingredients to perfectly execute Puerto Rican nouvelle cuisine. The menu is dominated by tapas, which you can easily make into a meal. — Fodor's

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Kasalta

86 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

It's little more than a coffee shop, but Kasalta serves what may be the best café con leche in the Caribbean. — Concierge

Repostería Kasalta is one of the best examples of the eponymous pandarerias across San Juan. — Frommer's

Those who think coffee can never be too strong should make a beeline to Kasalta, which has an amazing pitch-black brew that will knock your socks off. — Fodor's

Kasalta's is the sort of authentic Puerto Rican bakery and diner that you’ll find yourself crossing town to visit daily. — Lonely Planet

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Aguaviva

85 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The house specialty is seafood; many come for the souvenir cocktail cups. — Lonely Planet

Sexy blue lighting, a floor patterned after ocean waves, lamps shaped like jellyfish: yup, you’ve got an “under the sea” theme going here. — Frommer's

At the end of Calle Fortaleza in a spacious, brightly lit blue space, Aguaviva anchors SoFo and gives visitors a taste of the district's energy. — Concierge

Founded in 2002, Aguaviva serves what it calls seaside Latino cuisine crafted by chef Hector Crespo. — Travel + Leisure

The name means "jellyfish," which explains why this ultramodern place has dim blue lighting and jellyfish-shape lamps floating overhead. — Fodor's

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Carli's Fine Bistro & Piano

International 85 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Through such dishes as pan seared, almond amaretto grouper, roasted New Zealand rack of lamb, and righteous rib-eye steaks, the kitchen has yet to miss a note. — Frommer's

As you might guess from the name, the music is as much of a draw as the food at Carli's. — Fodor's

Carli's has a wide menu of tapas, and mains bring a Puerto Rican flair to continental classics. — Lonely Planet

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Dragonfly

85 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Dragonfly is decorated something like an opium den—sitting inside the crimson dining room, beneath light fixtures draped with fabric, you might just find yourself addicted to the Latin-Asian creations. — Concierge

One of the first "sceney" restaurants that helped transform Old San Juan into a bastion of trendiness, the original is still one of the best. — BlackBook

Dark and sexy, this popular Latin-Asian restaurant, all done up in Chinese red, feels more like a fashionable after-hours lounge than a restaurant. — Fodor's

This moody restaurant stays fresh with a changing menu of Pan-Asian fare with Latin accents. — Lonely Planet

The addictive Latin-Asian food here has kept this restaurant-lounge sizzling for years on the Old City's dining scene—a “hipster hotspot” since before the term was invented. — Frommer's

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El Jibarito

Italian 84 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Real homemade Puerto Rican food is served here by friendly faces at reasonable prices in a pleasant dining room. — Frommer's

El Jibarito is the kind of unpretentious place that you just know will serve a good and garlicky mofongo. — Lonely Planet

The menus are handwritten and the tables wobble, but sanjuaneros have favored this casual, no-frills, family-run restaurant for years. — Fodor's

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Tasca El Pescador

83 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

If you want food that's unmistakably Puerto Rican, head to Plaza del Mercado. — Fodor's

This small, always-packed restaurant across the street from the Santurce Plaza del Mercado has the best fresh seafood in the city. — Frommer's

Our favorite is Tasca El Pescador, where the catch of the day is iced down in a glass display case. If there's red snapper, try the whole fish deep-fried in a dish called chillo entero frito — Concierge

Popular menu items include the chillo entero frito, a whole fried red snapper, and the arroz con calamari, made with rice, squid, and squid ink. — Travel + Leisure

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Trois Cent Onze

82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

What you'll get today is Casbah-style atmosphere, complete with a zinc bar near the entrance, a soaring and richly beamed ceiling, and decor reminiscent of old Tangiers. — Frommer's

The amuse-bouche might be a translucent green apple ravioli with creamy goat cheese and roasted almonds. It’s subtle, delicate, and full of flavor. One of the stars is the honey roasted duck breast. — Fodor's

It may be located in San Juan, but Trois Cent Onze feels as if it was airlifted directly from France. — Concierge

311 evokes ‘elegant,’ ‘refined’ and ‘sophisticated’, without too many Latino-fusion makeovers. — Lonely Planet

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Perla

Seafood 82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Dine inside an architectural oyster at romantic Perla, where glass lamps cast a flattering glow and pearlescent walls echo into the nighttime sea. — Lonely Planet

Illuminated by artichoke lamps made from Murano glass, the dining room makes you feel as if you've entered a luxurious ocean liner. — Fodor's

The food lives up to its dramatic setting, and that's no easy task. — Frommer's

This eye-catching restaurant at the La Concha Resort is shaped like an oversized shell perched on a reflecting pool. — Travel + Leisure

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Caficultura

Cafés 82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

At Caficultura in Old San Juan, the food is "farm to table" and is as delicious as the creative menu sounds. In addition to the mostly healthy options, the highlight is the maple syrup made with rum. — Afar Magazine

One of the best cafes to open in San Juan in recent years, Caficultura prides itself both on its full coffee-bar menu and its delicious cocina de mercado. — Fodor's

Assume you'll want to settle in at this atmospheric cafe that evokes the gaslight era with its high ceilings and marble-topped tables. — Lonely Planet

You’ll sing the praises of Puerto Rico's rich coffee at this spot on Plaza Colon, with its open double doors, high wooden ceilings, tiled floors, and walls adorned by prints by Rafael Tufino. — Frommer's

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The Parrot Club

82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Among the stars of the menu here are passion fruit cocktails, plantain crusted mahi mahi and the restaurant’s wildly delicious burger, topped with the main ingredients of a Cubano sandwich. — Frommer's

Chef Guillermo Gonzalez calls on Spanish and African influences to create Nuevo Latino dishes, including the ropa vieja nachos and Caribbean spiced grouper. — Travel + Leisure

Loud and lively, this place is intent on making sure everyone is having a good time. — Fodor's

Welcome to the Parrot Club, where Puerto Rican politicians wind down and enamored gringos live it up. — Lonely Planet

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Raices

82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Step in and immerse yourself in the rich flavors of comida criolla with all its traditional accompaniments from the folkloric skirts and shirts of the wait staff to the Puerto Rican music. — Frommer's

The mofongo, the beloved national meal—essentially a mountain of pounded, garlic-enriched plantains with a bubbly center of chorizo, beef, shrimp, or chicken—is served, rich and juicy. — Concierge

I had the best Mofongo in years as much as it pains me to admit, with Dorado (Mahi Mahi) y Camarones (Shrimp) combo on top cooked in a delicious garlic sauce. — Afar Magazine

You can't miss this lively restaurant thanks to the waitresses in all-white campesina (peasant) dresses. — Fodor's

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Cafe Berlin

82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The view of the Plaza de Colon from the terrace here is reason enough to stop. — Lonely Planet

This central European-style cafe is housed in a comfortable room with huge glass windows overlooking the charming Plaza Colón, and there's also a sidewalk cafe in front. — Frommer's

A handful of tables spill onto a sidewalk deck lit with tiny lights at this bohemian and romantic restaurant overlooking Plaza Colón. — Fodor's

The evening before we ate at Cafe Berlin, an endearing and quirky man from E&B Tours (whose name was either Vinny, Loki, or Rocky), drove us to Fajardo to kayak through the mangroves. He... — Afar Magazine

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Acapulco Taqueria Mexicana

82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Located behind a pawn shop, Acapulco doesn't have the most inspiring address, but you should make a point to seek out this tiny restaurant to try some of the best Mexican food in Puerto Rico — Fodor's

Hands down, the best street tacos in town. — Lonely Planet

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La Mallorquina

82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Dating from 1848, La Mallorquina is thought to be the island's oldest restaurant. — Fodor's

Traditional Puerto Rican feasts: seasonal favorites include lechón (suckling pig), arroz con gandules (rice with pigeon peas), and pasteles (yucca and meat wrapped in a banana leaf). — Travel + Leisure

A must for historically minded food buffs, or food-minded history buffs, La Mallorquina is the grande dame of Old San Juan eateries. — Lonely Planet

Start with garlic soup or gazpacho, end with flan, and you'll have eaten a meal that's authentically Puerto Rican. — Frommer's

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