Fodor's Expert Review Exotica Restaurant

$$$ Ballena National Marine Park French Fodor's Choice

Fabulous French cuisine with tropical accents served on an intimate alfresco patio in the tiny French-Canadian enclave of Ojochal keeps this romantic restaurant at the top of locals' list of go-to special-occasion restaurants. Raked sand, red lanterns, and "curtains" of fairy lights set the tone for a menu that includes an intriguing Tahitian fish carpaccio bathed in a creamy banana and coconut marinade, a hearty serving of fish or shrimp in a banana-curry sauce, or a spicy Vietnamese chicken soup. French favorites include cognac liver pâté and a pricey but excellent duck breast with orange sauce. Presentation is artistic, with garnishes of flowers and sprigs of exotic greenery. The wine list is international and reasonably priced. Desserts are all homemade and luscious. Chocoholics won't want to miss the Devil's Fork flourless chocolate cake, rich and dense, with a hint of chili pepper. For a refreshing finish to a meal, the passion-fruit ice cream with a blackberry coulis will leave your taste buds tingling. This restaurant has just 14 tables encased in greenery under a thatch roof.

French Dinner $$$ Fodor's Choice

Quick Facts

Main road into Ojochal
Ojochal, Puntarenas  60504, Costa Rica


Known For:
  • Chili-spiced flourless chocolate cake
  • Spicy Vietnamese chicken soup
  • Reasonably priced international wine list
Restaurant Details:
Rate Includes: Closed Sun.; Sept.–Oct.; and Mon. May–Aug. No lunch, Reservations essential

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