Bocagrande is in the north western area of Cartagena, where all the modern hotels are. The one place you would probably go to use the beach if you wanted to stay close. So keeping that in mind I thought I’d suggest a couple of locally situated lunch options for you to check out.
This restaurant predates most of the high rise hotels, opening in Bocagrande in the early 90’s. With home style Italian cooking you’re onto a winner with this one. With lovely open brickwork and homely features, the dining area is definitely a place to relax. They make everything in house, from their pasta to their bread sticks. How do you even make bread sticks? God knows how you make them, but they were bloody good.
We had a batch of sticks and some house bruschetta, dripping in mozzarella to start. Beautifully fresh tomatoes really make the difference, along with that healthy dosage of cheese. We were nearly full before our mains came.
Georgi wanted to judge the pizza, the best way to do that is order the margarita. Thin crispy base, fluffy crust and a juicy topping ensured it was a winner. The lads running the show ensured us they have world champion pizza makers come in and train their staff… I wouldn’t doubt it to be fair.
I went for the fillet mignon, which came wrapped in bacon and served smothered in red wine and mushroom sauce! A dish my dad would love. They even added a Mediterranean touch with sautéed vegetables on the side to keep the dish fresh.
The steak was cooked a perfect medium-rare and the sauce was well balanced, not too salty but just enough to keep me gulping the beers.
For a lunch spot it’s great for holiday goers and travellers alike as the prices are very reasonable and the standard is top quality. If you’re craving some Italian comforts this is definitely the restaurant to go in Bocagrande.
Roberto and the team at ELY Cafe have perfected the art of hospitality at this beautiful eatery. With fresh pastries, salads, light bites, sandwiches etc it is the perfect lunch spot in a prime position just off from the beach. With too many free WiFi’s to chose from it attracts business men, bloggers and anyone who hasn’t found WiFi for weeks (like us) haha.
The menu is very veggie friendly, which can sometimes be a struggle in this part of the world, but they have caught up with the foodie trends and cater for all dietary requirements.
To start we had a crazy sized portion of spicy nachos, I mean I don’t think we needed main courses after it, I was struggling! It was so good with layers of guac, cheese, jalapeños and salsa…. I love nachos.
For main Georgi had the quinoa bowl with sections of onions, sweet corn salsa, guac, cheese, black beans and rice. A seriously healthy but folly option and really tasty.
I had the Cajun chicken sandwich. It was so moorish but filling after the nachos, but I couldn’t stop and munched through.
Washing it down with my new favourite beer The Bogotá Beer Compay pale ale. When I get home I think I’ll be importing a case or 2!
This is the perfect lunch option if you’re looking for something light and easy in a fantastic setting just off the beach. Cartagena has been amazing but we’re off to Santa Marta with a full restaurant calendar booked in, excited to say the least.