Jaco, Costa Rica – Week 2

batidoI spent the rest of my time in Costa Rica at Jaco Beach.  My coworkers headed back to freezing Pennsylvania and more snow.  I think I made the right decision.  I spent most of my time napping by the pool in the hot sun.  It is considerably hotter at the beach than in the mountains.  I ended up drinking more than eating during my four days at the beach.

I stopped by a grocery store the first day and picked up snackies for breakfast and some beer.  I found a hunk of blue cheese (cheap!), some charcuterie and some crackers.  This was my breakfast for the next few days.  After a week of eggs, rice and beans, I needed a change.  It’s really hot in the morning and a light breakfast was all I needed.  I also picked up a 12 pack of Pilsen.  It’s not the most popular beer, but it was the strongest.  I couldn’t tell much of a difference between it and everyone else’s favorite, Imperial.  They both taste like American swill (not that there’s anything wrong with that) and I went for the higher ABV.

I didn’t eat a regular lunch or dinner.  Once the sun was low enough, I’d head out to eat.  Usually between 4 and 6.  I went back to the Taco Bar.   It was too good to not have a second helping.  Unfortunately, they didn’t have any squid and I ended up getting a shrimp and a mahi taco   It was still outstanding.  I also hit up a seafood place, Langostas, and had gigantic plate of seafood,  A ‘small’ lobster over mixed garlic seafood (fish, squid, shrimp, clams, crab) with two sides ran me $22.  I don’t know why I didn’t do that meal twice.  It, too, was delicious.  I think I skipped dinner one night and ate chips/junk instead.  The last dinner I had was at an Argentinian place.  I couldn’t resist getting a giant platter of grilled meat.  They had ‘parillada para dos’ on the menu, but I talked them into making me ‘por uno‘.    The chinchulines and morcilla were fantastic.  It came with a nice little dish of chimichurri that went well with the pork/beef/chicken skewers.  I should have told them to hold the chicken as I couldn’t finish everything.  If you get the chance, I highly recommend getting the mixed grill at an Argentinian steak house.  It’s a lot of different meat and I have never been able to finish it.

Another thing you have to try in Costa Rica are the batidos.  There simple fruit smoothies, but so much better because the fruit is fresh.  Pineapples harvested ripe taste so much better than the ones they ship to us.  My favorite flavors were pina, guanabana and cas. (pineapple, soursop and ???)  You can get them with milk or without.  Due to my lactose intolerance, I chose the latter.  I even got one in the airport to go with my wings and casado,  and   I normally don’t get wings outside the US, but someone else had a plate and they looked awesome.  When my plate arrived, the wings were hot and crispy.  Served dry with a spicy vinegar to dip them in.  I was impressed with how good they were.  I chose the casado so that my last meal in Costa Rica would be rice and beans.  Not the wisest choice to do right before a 4 and 1.5 hour flight, but I did it anyway.  It was good.  Not the best I had during my trip, but by no means a bad meal.

Overall, I was really surprised with the food in Costa Rica.  It is both diverse and delicious.  If you get the chance, order a batido and try something you’ve never had before.  You won’t be disappointed.

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