Puerto Vallarta Restaurants

First-time travelers come for the sun and sea, but it's PV's wonderful restaurants that create legions of long-term fans. You can pay L.A. prices for perfectly decorated plates but also get fresh-caught fish and hot-off-the-griddle tortillas for scandalously little dough. Enjoy a 300-degree bay view from a cliff-top aerie or bu
First-time travelers come for the sun and sea, but it's PV's wonderful restaurants that create legions of long-term fans. You can pay L.A. prices for perfectly decorated plates but also get fresh-caught fish and hot-off-the-griddle tortillas for scandalously little dou
First-time travelers come for the sun and sea, but it's PV's wonderful restaurants that create legions of long-term fan

First-time travelers come for the sun and sea, but it's PV's wonderful restaurants that create legions of long-term fans. You can pay L.A. prices for perfectly decorated plates but also get fresh-caught fish and hot-off-the-griddle tortillas for scandalously little dough. Enjoy a 300-degree bay view from a cliff-top aerie or bury your toes in the sand. Dress up or go completely casual. It's the destination’s great variety of venues and cuisine that keeps returning foodies blissfully content.

During the past 30 years, immigrant chefs have expanded the culinary horizons beyond seafood and Mexican fare. You'll find everything from haute cuisine to fish kebabs. Some of the most rewarding culinary experiences are found outside of fancy restaurants and familiar chain eateries at the street-side tacos stalls and neighborhood fondas, humble spots serving bowls of chili-laced pozole and seafood-heavy Mexican comfort food.

The trend of the day is restaurant-lounges. Ten years ago, DeSantos (co-owned by the drummer of the Mexican rock band Maná) was the first to combine dining and dancing in a hip new way, with its noisy ground-floor bar-restaurant and pulsing dance club above. Today DeSantos, Mandala, and other lounges provide places to party with the locals beyond the cool and chill dining rooms.

For those who prefer dining alfresco (and wearing flip-flops) over the glamour scene, almost every popular beach has a palapa shanty or two selling fish fillets and snacks, sodas, and beer. Some offer the Pacific Coast specialty pescado sarandeado (butterflied red snapper rubbed with salt and spices and grilled over a wood fire) or the devilishly simple (and fiery hot) dish aguachile, which is a ceviche salad. The catch of the day may vary, but the white plastic tables and chairs in the sand are permanent fixtures.

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  • 1. Eddie's Place

    $ | Mexican

    This restaurant is an institution among locals and visitors who know that in Nuevo Vallarta there's more than just all-inclusive hotels. Eddie...Read More

  • 2. Mar Etxea

    $ | Spanish

    If it's Spanish tapas and food you're after, this new restaurant (spring 2014) in Nuevo Vallarta will not disappoint. Sample tortilla Española...Read More

  • 3. Sonora al Sur

    $ | Barbecue

    Throw in prime cuts from Mexico's finest meat producing state, Sonora, a chef that has found the secret to grilling perfect BBQ, and very affordable...Read More

  • 4. Dolce Vita

    $$ | Italian

    Fine Italian food is to be found at any of the two locations of this well-known local business. Pizzas are thin-crusted and baked in a traditional...Read More

  • 5. Mr Cream

    $ | International

    Chilaquiles, pancakes, waffles, baked goods, omelets... whatever you want for breakfast, they have it. This brand new restaurant in Nuevo Vallarta...Read More

  • 6. Rincón de Buenos Aires

    $$$ | Argentine

    Restaurants are a hard sell in all-inclusive-dominated Nuevo Vallarta. This one has managed to survive (it was formerly called La Porteña)....Read More

  • 7. Laguna Tino's

    $$ | Seafood

    Vine-covered trees poke through the roof of the breeze-blessed, covered outdoor eatery overlooking a placid lagoon. The Carvajal family has...Read More

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