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Jul 25, 2005 02:29 PM

Brief Nicaragua update...well, not so brief.....

  • j

Just got back from a brief (four days!) trip there: work, not play. I promised a chow report to someone, so here it is: You should like black beans and rice if you go there, they are served with every meal, including breakfast. If you like a little hot sauce with your beans, fine, but in most places you'll have to ask for it. They also serve either fried bananas or plantains (sometimes both) with every meal....and since I don't eat either I can't report anything, although my co-workers were always asking for mine so I guess they were good. We ate only two meals in restaurants (the rest were cooked by our hosts). One was at TipTop chicken (the only place open late at night when we arrived in Managua) is a local chain that is the local equivalent of El Pollo Loco. The chicken was good however; it had an unusual spice we couldn't quite identify, maybe saffron? It was served with french fries and yes, black beans and rice. The other restaurant we ate at was a place called La Parada in the town of Masaya, south of Managua. If you're ever in that area, I would recommend it. The place is open-air, but has a roof should it rain. Dancing (to disco music) and a bar. Their specialty is beef: I had the brochetta (like a kebab): it was tender and delicious, served with a salsa made mostly from vinegar, onions, and very hot serrano peppers. The kebab also had green peppers, onions, and tomatoes on it. Served with, yes, black beans and rice and fried bananas. There was something offered under "extras" on the menu that I thought was grilled green onions (like you see in Mexico); there was a word I didn't recognize followed by cebollitas. It turned out I had just ordered the best onion rings I ever tasted. Go figure. Should you go there, just order the first item listed under "extras" to get those delicious things.....Inexpensive: dinner including a couple of local beers, tax and tip was $10 each.

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  1. Thanks for the report!
    It's getting me excited for my trip to Honduras next week.

    1. I've been in Nicaragua for 10 days and can't find any Nica restaurants that are nice. Tough town in Managua. Tough beef, The rice bean mix is usually too dry, that Tip Top chicken is very good, but yeah, The Nacatamale was disappointing.. now looking for Gizo and Indio Viejo.

      1 Reply
      1. re: lebite

        try Managua Restaurant Verde for quite modern organic food and good ceviche, or in Granada for classic fare Hotel Gran Francia, the nice Italian restaurant Mona Lisa where you get your pasta al dente, or the great churasco beef at Zanguan. I heard of a good Peruvian placa in Managua. Will try to find the name.

      2. FYI the ubiquitous black beans and rice are called gallo pinto.

        Nicas love their gallo pinto.