Whether you're craving exceptional cuts of savory meat, fresh-from-the-ocean seafood, or local Puerto Rican staples, Caguas is a tasty stop during your culinary exploration of the Island. Here, you'll discover an array of locations that utilize local products for meals that feel fresh, authentic, and lovingly crafted.
Ojalá Speakeasy Bar
Behind a vibrant red door lies the Ojalá Speakeasy Bar, a restaurant that specializes in Puerto Rican comida criolla with a twist, along with an array of tasty cocktails. Delight in tapas such as Argentinian empanadas, deep-fried fresh cheese with guava sauce, ropa vieja empanadas, and croquettes.
Ojalá's main dishes include risotto, skirt steak, root vegetable hash with salmon, avocados stuffed with codfish, and coconut-glazed pork. They also host live music, so check the schedule for upcoming performances.
Mario's Pizza Place is a local chain restaurant known for its family atmosphere and loyal customers who have been eating pizza here for generations. Mario's was originally founded around 1960 under the name Mastro’s Pizza by Italian Israel Olivieri; after five years the business passed into Puerto Rican hands, and it has been a local go-to spot ever since.
Almojábanas are crispy fritters made with rice and stuffed with cheese, and are a gastronomic specialty of Caguas that have been served for nearly 100 years. Las Almojábanas sells these delicious bites out of a small, colorful pushcart on the sidewalk in front of the Caguas Tourist Information Office.
El After Lounge
Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, El After Lounge is a must-try eatery serving American-style foods such as pizza, build-your-own burgers, and pasta, plus authentic, local dishes such as mofongo, croquetas, and mouthwatering entrees. In the afternoon and evening, enjoy the lounge-style vibe at the bar and sample one of their outstanding drinks, including a variety of frappes, beers, cocktails, and house specialties like the Greek Martini, El Coqui, or sangria.
Bistro Tartine is a modern-yet-intimate French restaurant located close to the bustling heart of Caguas. The bistro was created by the renowned French Chef Daniel Vasse, who has been in Puerto Rico for more than 30 years. His vision of cuisine integrates native Puerto Rican ingredients while maintaining the essence of French food.
La Cueva del Mar
La Cueva del Mar Restaurant specializes in criollo-style cuisine with a seafood focus. If fish is what you crave, you'll find everything from shrimp, crab, and conch to marlin and lobster seasoned with unique local flavorings. If you like a little turf with your surf, La Cueva also serves up tasty beef, pork, and chicken dishes.
Marcelo Restaurant highlights a combination of Cuban, Puerto Rican, and international dishes. The restaurant has been around since 1969 and serves specialty dishes that have been handed down from generation to generation, keeping a sense of tradition to the flavors.
Specialties include smoked pork and chicken, which have been staples since the restaurant opened. Main courses feature smoked and grilled meats, paellas, asopao, and fish platters.
Caguas Food Park
Foodies will fall in love with the Caguas Food Park, an open-air space with a convoy of diverse food trucks waiting to serve you mouthwatering bites. Discover wheeled restaurants serving gourmet food, frappes, desserts, smoked meat, pizza, seafood, unique burgers, and typical Puerto Rican dishes. With so many dining options, you'll have no chance of leaving here hungry.
Restaurante Raíces is a Puerto Rican restaurant chain with additional locations in the metro region. Savor the tastes of the Island in each of their specialties and sides, including mofongo, fried green plantains, or rice and beans.
Stop by with family and friends for lunch, dinner, or even just a refreshing drink. Kids will enjoy freshly made lemonade, guava, pineapple, and passion fruit juices, while adults will relish the variety of house cocktails, from rummy cuba libres to mojitos and tropical sangrías. It's sure to be one of your favorite spots during your visit.
For vegan and vegetarian eats, El Grifo has some of the best meals on the east side of the Island. The farm-to-table concept presents eaters with fresh, organic, and flavorful dishes in an eclectic setting. Try their burgers made from quinoa, mushrooms, beets, carrot leaves, carrots, roasted peppers, and chia seeds, topped with tomatoes, lettuce, and other veggies.
Even if you're usually a meat lover, dishes like the delicious mushroom risotto made with cauliflower rice are definitely worth a try. They also have freshly made juices. If you have time, sign up for one of their cooking classes during your vacation.
Néctar Acai & Lunch
At Néctar Acai & Lunch, a healthy and refreshing meal awaits you just a few steps from Plaza de Recreo Santiago R. Palmer. Dine on foods that not only fill your belly, but nurture your body. While Néctar Acai & Lunch offers delicious, veggie-focused meals and drinks like acai bowls and smoothies, they also offer a variety of healthy protein dishes like spicy crab nachos, chicken wraps, and pork tacos.
El Manjar Criollo
A local hot spot for criollo-style dining, El Manjar Criollo is a must-try when visiting Caguas. The restaurant is a welcoming place for all guests and features menus in Spanish and English as well a menu for children. Try an assortment of Island favorites with the Creole Assortment platter, get adventurous with classic Puerto Rican sides, or opt for a decadent local dessert. Doña Mery's dishes are inspirations created from fusions of haute cuisine and local ingredients.
FOK Brewing Co.
Looking for something different during your night out in Caguas? Drop by FOK Brewing Co. to sample the ales, stouts, porters, and IPAs of the first brewery in town. FOK produces 18 different suds and about 1,000 gallons of hand-crafted beer each week. Any day of the week is great for an evening at FOK, though Friday nights draw the biggest crowd because of their weekly food-truck event.
Jendy's Heladería Artesanal
On toasty days or after a trek through the nearby mountains, the best way to refresh is with a few scoops of ice cream from Jendy's Heladería Artesanal. Characterized by unique flavors inspired by local and international cuisine, this artisanal ice cream shop offers more than just simple vanilla. Try a scoop of local favorites, like rice with beans, corn, taro, nougat, different tropical fruits, and Christmas-season flavors. Jendys also offers delicious vegan options.
The Sangría Factory
Enjoy an afternoon or evening out at The Sangría Factory, a tasting room by Sangría Los Hermanos, a local company. Located a few blocks from the Plaza de Recreo Santiago R. Palmer, the factory is a great place to try solo or with a group of friends. Taste exquisite, award-winning sangrías prepared with wine, rum, and natural ingredients. Sample fruity flavors like coconut, cranberry, mango, and lime. Be sure to try the specialty batches when available, like the coffee or the holiday-themed coquito.
The self-proclaimed "House of Carne Frita and Mofongo" was founded over 50 years ago in the mountains of Puerto Rico, and has been serving locals and visitors some of the best comida criolla ever since. Los Gorditos is another family-owned spot that has been passed down to the younger generation.
Taste Gorditos' traditional deep-fried meat with mofongo, sautéed-onion-topped turkey, tender grilled skirt steak, and creole-stuffed mofongos. One bite and you'll understand why loyal diners have been returning to this eatery for years.
Pa’ Cuba 1954
Travel back in time to 1950s Havana at Pa' Cuba 1954. A newer restaurant to the Caguas culinary scene, Pa' Cuba offers a varied menu of Cuban and creole dishes, including crispy ham croquetas, Cuban-style salmon, rice mamposteao, cheesecake empanadas, and much more. Come prepared to dance, as Pa' Cuba has an open dance floor and raised stage for live bands to play hip-swaying rhythms.