Restaurants – where to lunch, where to dine
The food industry in Colombia, particularly in Bogotá, has been positively influenced by the US obsession with customer service. Service is of a very high standard and tips are usually included in the bill. Smoking is no longer allowed in most restaurants although you are allowed to smoke if you are seated at the outdoor tables. Some restaurants have indoor smoking areas but these are more often than not really unappealing!
• Club Colombia – recently opened by one of Bogotá’s most successful
restaurateurs (Leo Katz & Harry Sasson, see below), this up market
restaurant specialises in Colombian cuisine. Not to be missed, especially if you
do not have much time to travel around the country.
Avenida 82, between Carrera 9 & 10
• Osaki - for Japanese on the park in 93rd street – very good sushi, casual
chic atmosphere, busy at night with a few nice tables outside which are
lovely if the weather allows. There is another Osaki in ‘rosales’ – Cra. 5
• Leo Cocina y Cava Recently named best restaurant in Colombia by Condé
Nast traveller, here you will find typical Colombian cuisine such as ajiáco
soup, bandeja paisa (mixed dish from the coffee growing region), alongside
other flavours with a fusion twist. As the name implies in spanish, there is an
excellent selection of wine.
Calle 27 B No 6-75
• El Corral & El Corral Gourmet Simply the most delicious hamburgers! They
have outlets all over the city and stay open late but for optimal surroundings
visit their ‘gourmet’ restaurant on the park on 93rd street and try their more
exotic burgers as well as the classics.
• Harry Sasson The meeting place of the élite of Bogotá - innovative and
excellent food by the famous Colombian food guru. For lunch and dinner –
possibly the capital´s most famous restaurant.
• La Fragata A classic Bogotá staple of many years, situated at the top of the
World Trade Center, this restaurant is built as a circle and as you eat it
slowly rotates giving you an amazing view of the glittering city by night.
Excellent seafood; old-school service. Expensive but a worthwhile experience;
the kind of place parents take their kids on special occasions and also good
for romantic special occasion….
Calle 100 No 8A-55.
• Andrés Carne de Rés If you cannot resist visiting the restaurant where all
the trendy, high society Bogotá locals go to party, book dinner here and stay
for drinks afterwards. Located on the outskirts of the city, on Saturdays and
Sundays it is family central but transforms itself completely at night. Food-
wise, it´s all about the meat here! Very, very expensive.
• Wabisabi For excellent sushi, smaller and popular with sushi connaisseurs.
Calle 90 No. 16-16
• La Table de Michel A real treasure, this French restaurant is tucked away on
a little street in an area that is has recently had a bit of a restaurant boom.
Very busy for lunch with business execs; Michel cooks traditional French food
with generous portions and prices. He will also deliver (with proper porcelaine
tableware) if you are nearby. Calle 69 between Carrera 4 & 5.
• Armadillo Great place for a weekday dinner, good selection of meat and
excellent service. Carrera 5, Calle 72.
• Amarti Wonderful atmosphere for great Italian food and an interesting mix of
people. On the main square in Usaquen near Hacienda Santa Barbara shopping
Aside from all the fantastic restaurants, you must try to visit a super-market or a street market simply to see the incredible variety of fruit - it is truly spectacular! In addition to juicy mangos, papayas, etc, try the less familiar pitayas, curubas, and guanabanas…..Colombians are seriously into juices and will drink them with almost every meal, so if you don’t get a chance to enjoy the fruit proper, you can sample it in a juice. Just remember to specify whether you want it mixed with milk or water.