Eating out in the Ecuadorian capital of Quito will always be a fulfilling experience; you name it, Quito offers it. From local food stalls to posh restaurants, stomach rumbles can be conquered any time of day or night. The city benefits from Andean-inspired coastal dishes, ready to serve up exotic seafood platters along with tropical fruits and vegetables that make for a flavorsome food fest.
The Mariscal district offers the best places for westerner-friendly menus, with an all-encompassing range of world gastronomy. At the Magic Bean
, there are bagels and original bean brews; Thai-fusion can be found at Uncle Ho's; Finn McCools dishes up some hearty home cooking from a British recipe book. Otherwise, for those with a more refined palette who are willing to splash the cash for some tiptop nosh, there are a number of plush joints spread around the new town. Here the fashion is international fineries, and whether you fancy an Italian-style pizza or a full sushi spread, choice abounds. The Azuca Latin Bistro
is a fusion-Latino-style joint, which is busy and upbeat and perfectly positioned in the center of the Plaza Foch.
Dining out in Quito also offers a fantastic opportunity to enjoy the stunning views of the city skyline. Located next to the Parque Itchimbia is the Cafe Mosaico
, renowned for having one of the most impressive viewpoints around, which looks out on to both the old and the new parts of town. Mosaico is a family run establishment, with a mixture between Greek-Ecuadorian-American descendants that work in unison to produce an extensive and creative menu. Otherwise, Santa Espuma is also a beautiful spot and is complemented by a mighty fine menu that offers its old blend of microbrews that are all made on the premises.
However, for those of you keen to explore some of the more local fads and flavors, resist the gringo-fied cafes and head for restaurants offering authentic Ecuadorian cuisine. La Ronda
is well worth a visit, as the good local dishes are spiced up by typical music and dance, with a live show on most weekends. For the more daring foodie, the street vendors are a good way to curb your hunger for next to nothing. The street sellers offer not only good snacks and tropical fruit juices, but also many tasty regional specialities; try the meat-filled empanada pies or the yucca- and rice-loaded "menu del dia". If you're really willing to eat like a local, the Gonzalez Suarez hot dog may look rather fatal, but it becomes strangely alluring after a local microbrew or two.
Valparaiso, Quito, Ecuador
Av. Coruna N32-302 y Av. Gonzalez Suarez, Quito, Ecuador Avenue La Coruna
Av. Amazonas y Republica. Mall el Jardin.
Cumbaya. Centro Plaza Cumbaya
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