Colombia: a land of breathtaking landscapes, warm beaches, and a culture that dances to its own rhythm. But what really sets this vibrant country apart is its culinary scene. Colombians are known for their zest for life, and that passion extends to their eclectic cuisine. If you're a traveler with a craving for delicious food, look no further! We've scoured Colombia to bring you the top 15 restaurants that will tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving for more.
1. Andres Carne De Res
Location: Andres Carne De Res is a chain restaurant with three locations in Bogota and one in Medellin. The restaurant is known for its Colombian food, including the steak sandwiches and burgers on the menu.
What to expect: A visit to this restaurant will be an experience filled with traditional Latin American cuisine and décor. From the moment you walk into Andres Carne De Res, it's as if you've entered another world with its vibrant colors, upbeat music, and bright decorating style. This unique atmosphere can be credited to owner Juan Carlos “Papi” Diaz, who wanted his restaurants to be like a home away from home—a place where everyone feels welcome regardless of where they come from or what they look like!
What To Order: One of the most popular items on their menu is their Carne de res or beef sandwiches which come with fries; there are also other options such as churrasco (steak), sirloin steak cooked medium rare with a side dish of rice or french fries; Pollo al carbón (chicken breast cooked over charcoal); chuletas de cerdo con papas fritas (pork chops served with french fries); picadillo con Arroz y papas fritas (ground beef mixed with rice & potatoes). You can also get your meal customized according to how spicy you want it by choosing from mild to extra hot! We highly recommend trying out one of these delicious dishes while visiting here.
2. Motor Supply Company Bistro Restaurant
Motor Supply Company Bistro Restaurant is a culinary gem in Colombia. With a diverse menu featuring fresh, delicious food, this restaurant will keep you coming back for more. Whether you're in the mood for a juicy burger, a tender steak, or a seafood delight, Motor Supply Company has it all.
The friendly staff and mouthwatering menu make every visit a delight. You'll find yourself wanting to try something new each time you dine here, and with the variety on offer, you'll never be disappointed.
If you're looking for a restaurant to elevate your dining experience, Motor Supply Company Bistro Restaurant should be your top choice!
3. El Cielo – Top Restaurants in Colombia
El Cielo, located in the “Pearl of Valle del Cauca,” Cali, is a culinary haven. This restaurant offers authentic Andean cuisine alongside Colombian favorites. Step inside and be embraced by its warm and inviting atmosphere, adorned with traditional wooden walls and a creamy yellow color scheme.
While you can savor classics like empanadas, ceviche, and patacones here, El Cielo also surprises with unique dishes like alpaca steak tartare, seasoned tenderloin meat with a dash of lime juice, or the succulent churrasco de res, served over white rice cooked ala Peruana style.
Whether you're a seafood enthusiast or prefer something less fishy, El Cielo has something to delight your taste buds.
4. Club Colombia Casa Cristal
Club Colombia Casa Cristal is a dazzling restaurant nestled in Bogota. Known for its exquisite menu and impeccable service, it's the ideal spot for impressing friends or hosting a special event.
The restaurant's picturesque setting adds to its charm, making it feel like a luxurious dining experience that won't break the bank.
5. Pajares Salinas Restaurant
Pajares Salinas Restaurant is a hidden treasure in the heart of Bogota. With over 30 years of history, this restaurant exudes an intimate, charming atmosphere. Housed in a building from the 1800s, it retains its old-world Colombian charm.
The walls adorned with vintage paintings, including the symbol of Bogota, El Pajaro, set the stage for a memorable dining experience. Don't forget your camera; these vintage surroundings make for fantastic photo ops!
The menu at Pajares Salinas Restaurant may be compact, but it's diverse, offering both traditional and modern options. Daily specials on the chalkboard above the counter ensure you'll never leave hungry!
6. Give Carmen a Try
In a city known for its nightlife, Carmen stands out as a place for a relaxed dinner with family and friends. This traditional Colombian restaurant serves classic dishes like paella and chicharrónes (fried pork rinds). The menu also boasts an excellent selection of wine and cocktails to pair with your meal.
Carmen is conveniently located near some of Colombia's most fascinating museums. After dinner, take a leisurely stroll through Parque 93 to discover the history behind these grand structures before visiting them in person!
7. La Divina Comedia
La Divina Comedia, located in El Poblado and Zona Rosa, is a beloved Italian restaurant. Open for both lunch and dinner, it's a culinary delight in the heart of Colombia.
What to order: Gnocchi Alla salsa di noci e Tartufo Nero (gnocchi with nut sauce and black truffle), Fettuccine alla bolognese (bolognese pasta).
8. La Plazuela del Centro Andino
La Plazuela del Centro Andino has been a Colombian culinary institution for over 50 years. Founded by a famous Colombian chef, it's a testament to his mission of sharing Colombia's flavors with the world.
The menu boasts traditional dishes like bandeja paisa and empanadas, as well as modern creations like breaded shrimp croquettes with salsa verde. Soup lovers will revel in options like chorizo soup and Caldo de res con garbanzos y arvejas asados (beef soup with chickpeas and grilled peas).
9. Harry Sasson – Top-Notch Colombian Restaurant
Harry Sasson is a Michelin-starred restaurant located in Bogota, Colombia. Opened by Chef Harry Sasson in 2011, it offers traditional Colombian cuisine with a touch of French elegance.
In 2015, Harry Sasson received the prestigious title of Best Restaurant in South America at the World's 50 Best Restaurants competition. It's also been recognized as one of the top restaurants in Latin America and one of the most luxurious dining establishments on the continent by Bloomberg Businessweek.
10. Les Amis Bizcochería Restaurant
Les Amis Bizcochería Restaurant stands out as one of the few places in Colombia where you can savor authentic Colombian dishes. While many restaurants focus on international fare, Les Amis offers traditional Colombian delicacies like filete de Pollo con yuca palta (chicken with cassava root) or comalitos de bizcocho (cornmeal sweetbreads).
For something unique, try their sopa de patatas (potato soup), served with refried beans and a fried egg on top—an unusual delight that's a rarity in Colombia!
11. La Bodega de Mario
La Bodega de Mario, nestled in the historic heart of Bogota, adds a modern twist to traditional Colombian cuisine. This restaurant has been serving innovative dishes for over 15 years and boasts an extensive wine list.
Specialties on the menu include plantain empanadas with guava sauce, patacon con queso y chorizo, Pollo en salsa de jengibre y Limon (chicken breast covered in ginger sauce), Arroz con mariscos (seafood rice), and papas rellenas con Picante de Carne (stuffed potato balls filled with ground beef).
12. Marea by Rausch – One of the Delightful Restaurants in Colombia
Marea by Rausch offers an Italian culinary escape in the heart of Bogota. Its casual yet charming ambiance makes it the perfect choice for a romantic dinner or a night out with friends.
The menu features classic Italian dishes like lasagna, pizza, and pasta, alongside unique offerings like octopus carpaccio and parmesan ravioli with truffle cream sauce. Don't forget to explore their appetizers, including stuffed mushrooms or calamari fritti while you sip on wines and cocktails from their well-stocked bar.
13. Roll in to Enjoy at Carmen- Calle Colombian Restaurant
Carmen, located in the heart of downtown Bogotá, is a must-visit for anyone seeking traditional Colombian cuisine. This restaurant exudes intimacy and warmth, making you feel like part of the family with each visit.
Carmen's menu features a range of classic Colombian dishes, including sancocho de gallina, bandeja paisa, patacones, and arroz con pollo. After your meal, satisfy your sweet tooth with one of their mouthwatering desserts, such as flan de coco y queso crema al vainilla con chorizo Frito or tarta de Manzana al brandy criollo dulce con Caramelo Rojo y Galleta turronera con salsa Negra dulce especiada.
14. 929 Kitchen And Bar
929 Kitchen And Bar Restaurant is a culinary gem in Bogotá, serving delicious food since 2012. With a friendly and welcoming staff, this restaurant has become a favorite among locals and tourists alike.
Choose from a variety of dishes on their menu, including juicy steaks, flavorful burgers, fresh salads, fish tacos, pasta, and more. Each visit promises a fresh and delectable dining experience.
If you're eager to explore Colombian cuisine, 929 Kitchen And Bar Restaurant is a must-visit!
15. Flying Saucer Draught Emporium Restaurant
Planning a trip to Colombia? Don't miss a meal at Flying Saucer Draught Emporium Restaurant. Situated in the heart of Bogota, this restaurant has been a culinary icon since 1965 when it was founded by American businessman Jack Crandall. Today, it's proudly run by his granddaughter, Sabrina Espinoza-Crandall.
The menu offers a taste of American-style cuisine, from mouthwatering burgers and hot dogs to fresh salads and desserts. If you're a burger lover, don't miss their juicy creations, especially when topped with cheese sauce. It adds an extra burst of flavor!
Exploring new places and new foods is one of the joys of travel. Colombia's culinary scene offers a rich tapestry of flavors and experiences that will leave you craving for more. We hope this curated list of the 15 Best Restaurants in Colombia adds a delightful chapter to your journey. If you've already sampled some of these culinary treasures or discovered hidden gems of your own, we'd love to hear about it. After all, sharing stories of travel and food is a universal pleasure! So, dig in and savor the flavors of Colombia. Your taste buds are in for a treat!
Q1: Is it safe to eat street food in Colombia?
A1: Street food in Colombia can be delicious, but it's essential to exercise caution. Look for vendors with clean and hygienic setups, and make sure the food is cooked thoroughly. Locals can often point you to the best and safest street food stalls.
Q2: What is the tipping etiquette in Colombian restaurants?
A2: Tipping in Colombia is appreciated but not mandatory. A 10% tip is generally considered generous. Some restaurants may include a service charge in the bill, so check before adding an additional tip.
Q3: Are credit cards widely accepted in Colombian restaurants?
A3: Credit cards are widely accepted in most restaurants and establishments in major Colombian cities. However, it's a good idea to carry some cash for smaller, more local places that may not accept cards.
Q4: What are some must-try Colombian dishes?
A4: Colombian cuisine offers a diverse range of dishes to try. Don't miss bandeja paisa, empanadas, arepas, sancocho, and ajiaco. Be sure to try different regional specialties as you travel through the country.
Q5: Is it customary to make reservations at restaurants in Colombia?
A5: While reservations are not always required, they are advisable, especially at popular or upscale restaurants. Making a reservation ensures you have a table, particularly during peak dining hours.