Wednesday, February 17, 2016

2016 Vacation Day 2 - The Streets and Vittles of Old San Juan

We had taken the Flavors of Old San Juan walking tour last year, and enjoyed it so much we did it again this year.

It was not an exact repeat of last year, but had some new restaurants along with some of the best from the previous trip.

Our guide for this tour was named Juan, and he was an enthusiastic and knowledgeable tour guide.

We were in a group of 13, us and an extended family of 9 who were celebrating their fathers/grandfather's 60th birthday. They were an interesting and fun bunch - Hindus from Guyana of Indian (as in the subcontinent India) extraction who now lived in various parts of the USA. They're quite an accomplished family and they were great company to stroll around the city.

So we got the history of San Juan and got to sample some great foods.

First were two appetizers, one was a croquette made to a 300 year old Spanish recipe, the other a popular Puerto Rican appetizer.

Both were tasty.

We then went to the Parque De Palomas, where the pigeons rule the roost. Way more pigeons than people, and they know they're in charge in the park and will stare you down.

We also stopped by the second thinnest house in the world (apparently the thinest just opened in Amsterdam). If you want to stay here, they apparently are going to make it available on AirBnb for rent. If you want to live thin, that's the place for you.

We again went to Rosa De Triana and made Mofongo, which was great. Mofongo is fried green plantains that you mash up with a mortar and pestle with garlic and butter, spoon on a topping, ion this case chicken, and you're good to go.

We also stopped for popsicles, had some awesome Pina Coladas and enjoyed hours of touring the city and learning more about it.

By the end of the tour the kids were wiped, so we headed home where after a nap they revitalized enough to hit the beach.

Then we went to dinner at Molini's.

A small cafe, there's no permanent menu as everything is made fresh depending on what ingredients they get that day. The menu is handwritten on a chalkboard and the owner translated it for us.

Tash and I each decided to try professionally made Mofongo (#7 & 9 on the menu), one with shrimp and the other with steak. To say both were awesome would be an understatement. The kids had the Salmon and rice to share and it was plenty of food. Great service, cool atmosphere and awesome food. I also sampled one of the local beers, Magna, and it was quite good.

Then we tucked the kids into bed as tomorrow promised some high-flying adventure.

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