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“Best food in San Jose”
Review of Cocina Eclectica

Cocina Eclectica
Ranked #25 of 178 Restaurants in Escazu
Restaurant details
Reviewed 1 October 2016 via mobile

We were told about Joanne by the BnB we stayed at and were taken over. Yes, it is not the easiest place to find as there is no sign, but that is a part of the charm and Joanne is fantastic. The place is different from any you may have dined in before. You wring a button and get buzzed in. You walk in through the open front door as if you are old friends and someone will meet you and tell you to find a place where ever you like. There may be other dining already. Just find a place and settle in. Joanne will ask you a few questions as she did us and then surprise you. Be clear if you are hungry or not. We had an appetizer I cannot describe both times we ate there. Absolutely wonderful. If you are still hungry she will surprise you again and if you have room for desert she will surprise you once more. We had a chocolate wrapped in chocolate desert that I could eat every day. There is never a menu and you have no idea what dinner will cost but don't fret. It is reasonable. Our dinner was $25 for my wife and I and our lunch was $15. We had one less course for lunch and it was enough for us.
Joanne makes from what is in the garden or is fresh. If you want to know what you may be having or feel inclined for something special then this is not your place. If you are adventurous and love surprises, you will be delighted. Go with an open mind.

1  Thank NealPetersen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (36)
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12 - 16 of 36 reviews

Reviewed 9 September 2016

Cociana Eclectica, Joanna's

A culinary experience fueled by passion hidden in a charming neighborhood of Escazu. Her home a wonderful celebration of art, sculpture and joy that gives you a glimpse into a soul whose only mission is to awaken your palette. The many corners of twists and turns of space in her home truly creates an ambiance for every mood. People very often seem to start sharing conversations beyond where they are sitting as they share the excitement of every dish made with love, care , and attention. There is no menu. There is only Joanna's inquisitive questions that aim at what will satisfy your dietary needs and food fantasies. She has an herbal garden and you can watch her pick fresh herbs and bring them to the kitchen as she sprinkles the food with her own garden of Eden. There are no boundaries to her magical food creations and when you walk through her front door you enter a world unlike anything you could have imagined.
Thank you Joanna
Michael Bielski

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4  Thank Michael b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 September 2016 via mobile

As a young woman traveling alone, I am very careful about where I go. This was my first time to Costa Rica, I know minimal Spanish, and had had a long day of travel. My Airbnb host told me to go to Joanna's, and I'm so glad she did. Joanna has opened her home to travelers and locals alike, and the entire experience was amazing. If you go into it knowing this is someone's house, not a chain restaurant, you will have an incredible meal. The food is beautifully prepared and - get this - TASTES fantastic. The portions are larger than other "gourmet" meals, and she keeps the courses coming. I told her I didn't like anything super spicy, and aside from that I would take whatever and she ran with it. I had to have dessert... And when I went to pay, full and happy, she told me my bill was $7. I refused to pay that little and forced her to take at least $15... Long story short, GO TO JOANNA'S. I ate with three fellow travelers and got so much insight on Costa Rica, what to see, where to go, and the atmosphere was so comfortable after a hectic day at the airport. Go get a meal, hug the chef, and I apologize in advance that you eventually have to leave. Ciao!

1  Thank Devon B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2016

Cocina Eclectica was recommended to us by another tourist in Costa Rica. It sounded interesting, so we decided to give it a try. There were 3 of us. First of all it was very hard to find! Only a small sign on the front of the house and very hard to see in the dark. We met Joanna the owner of the restaurant and had only been acquainted with her for a few minutes when she began dropping the "f" bomb over and over about our presidential candidates and anything else she was talking about! She did not know us and we found her language very offensive and inappropriate! If we had it to do over we would have got up and walked out! There isn't a menu, so you just get whatever she has cooked up. We were first served a delicious soup which made us look more forward to the rest of the meal. Next we received 2 small similar to egg rolls served on top of thin sliced cucumbers. This was also very good. We presumed the main entree would be served next. But after sitting there for while Joanna brought out a partially eaten container of homemade ice cream and we were told to eat up. We were confused, but then she told us that was all she had to offer and that she had run out of food. We were definitely still hungry! She doesn't have a set price, you pay her what you think the meal was worth. She should have told us in the beginning she couldn't offer us a full meal and we could have made the decision to stay or leave. It was also very obvious she had been drinking or something else since we saw a bong sitting on the coffee table. The only reason I gave this place a poor rating instead of terrible was because the food we were served was very good and the girl helping Joanna was very sweet and did her best to please. We would never go back there and do not recommend going there.

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Thank jmtlaw97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 May 2016

I have been here, literally, hundreds of times and it is always a special occasion! I highly recommend! You can go to the pricey restaurants and not get nearly the creative experience that you get from Joanna!

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2  Thank Liza M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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