Specializing in the food of Ecuador's north coastal region of Esmeraldas, this casual lunch-only spot stands out from the American chains and hotel restaurants in La Floresta. The Afro-Ecuadorian cuisine served here is heavy on peanuts, coconuts, and shellfish. On the menu are excellent versions of some of the most representative plates from the region, like encocados (creamy, coconut milk-based stews), ceviches, and bolones (mashed and fried plantains balls filled with cheese, shrimp, or pork). Soak up the sun from the outdoor seating and savor a cold, frothy glass of coconut milk.
Isabel La Catolica 24-560, across from the Swissotel
Our Rating Neighborhood La Floresta Hours Daily 11am–5:30pm Phone 02/222-6616 Prices Main courses $7–$10 Cuisine Type Ecuadorian Web site El Esmeraldas