Comparing La Concha and Il Mulino in Puerto Rico.
I'm turning 40 next month and will be in Puerto Rico that Saturday night staying in La Concha. Should my wife and I eat dinner at the hotel or use our Il Mulino gift certificate?
If we don't use the gift, we can use it at the original NYC location which is within walking distance from our apartment.
Not sure why you are limiting your meals to La Concha or Il Mulino (especially as they are in different parts of San Juan). You're probably in NYC about 98% of the year. I would save the Il Mulino gift certificate for when you are at home and use this opportunity to try something you can't get as easily in NYC.
My favorite restaurant experience in San Juan was Pikayo, which is a very short cab ride from La Concha.
I just got back from a week in San Juan, and had a very nice, albeit very pricey, dinner at Marmalade in Old San Juan, but my favorite meal was lunch at El Popular, which is right off the Plaza del Mercado, not very far from where you're staying. It seemed like a local hangout, not at all fancy, but totally authentic, and delicious ...
I would stay away from Il Mulino and would try something different, there is a great new spot at La Concha called Perla, or you could try going to either Pikayo which is inside the Art Museum or Augusto's which is in Miramar, both places are just a short cab ride from La Concha.
Miss Needle, we've been to Pikayo, Marmalade, Mallorquina, Dragonfly, Parrot Club, Aguaviva, Picoteo, Jibarrito, Patio de Sam, Amadeus, usually stay in El Convento, etc etc....we've done San Juan to death in terms of food.
We have our reasons for naming these two restaurants in particular, though.
Has Restaurante Botin opened? We really like the one in Madrid.
La Perla is a beautiful restaurant...good atmosphere in a *happening* hotel...the food is presented with style..only problem is ....everything I have eaten there is bland and has no taste. (Have been there four times) This is very frustrating because one expects to be amazed by the look of the plate...big disappointment. Have eaten in Il Mulino a few times...and am usually not very happy when I leave. Food never has me saying "Yumm"..always leave and say "now why did I just spend so much for a mediocre meal...and then I go back in a few months to give it another try. Haven't been back in a while. Have heard Il Mulino in NY is much better in terms of taste and food quality. My favorite restaurant in San Juan is Pikayo.(Had New Year's Eve dinner there last night because it is the finest food in San Juan..never disappoints) Chayote would follow closely.