The second Sunday in May is Mother’s Day and if you decided this year on a stay at home meal instead of facing the hungry hordes in crowded restaurants, there is always an excuse to celebrate with family and friends, especially in a country with so many long-weekend. So, here a listing of some of Bogotá’s best: for every budget, taste and liking – and now that Mother’s Day has come and gone – chances are you’ll be guaranteed a seat and a table.
Donostia by chef Tomás Rueda is creative, authentic and enjoyable from start to finish. Offering dishes prepared with seasonal organic foods and free range and grass-fed meats, it is respectful of farmers and the environment as much as it is of its guests. Tomás’ inventive yet consistent cuisine is refreshing every time. Try weekly tapas or the trout cooked in bijao, a type of plantain leaf, served with a Paipa cheese sauce and quinoa salad ($38,000), or the barley risotto with artichoke and shiitake mushrooms, garnished with fresh goat cheese and served in a squash ($25,400). The Veal Ossobuco with native condiments is served with criolla potato puree and green peas and lima beans ($38,000) is a satisfying choice for meat lovers. Don’t leave without trying desserts, they all deserve five stars. The Passion Fruit cheese cake ($13,000), a must.
Calle 29 bis No.5 – 84. www.elorigendelacomida.co
Club Colombia. Following the style of grand social clubs, where Bogotá families enjoy eating and spending Sunday afternoons, Club Colombia has become an institution onto itself. The restaurant serves Colombia in a mouthful. While almost every family has its own recipe, Club Colombia manages to offer well prepared and authentic dishes that represent this country’s rich gastronomic legacy. Sought ought by international visitors as much as by locals, the dinning rooms are spacious and decorated with Pre-Columbian gold figures. Outside seating in the grand patio is pleasant any given day. The menu offers Ajiaco ($29,800) – the potatoe stew with chicken typical of Bogotá, and served with, avocado, cream and capers. Veal chops from Valle del Cauca ($38,800), accompanied by rice and fried green plantain, or Blackened Round steak from Cartagena ($58,800) with coconut rice and green fried plantain are good choices.
Ave Calle 82 No.9-11. Tel: 2495681/ 3210704.
Andres Chía/ Andrés D.C./Andrés Medellín
Colombia’s quintessential venue of fun, any day or night and celebrating everything thing Colombian. The three locations have special activities for children that include face painting and arts and crafts. Andr´ss serves excellent Colombian food and top quality meats. Try the Lomo Ajisoso ($53,900) or tenderloin served in a spicy sweet and sour wine sauce. The Lomo al Trapo ($53,900), or tenderloin braised in a salted cloth, is a typical delicacy of chilly Bogotano nights.
Don’t miss out on the Arepa de Choclo ($16,900) con queso or corn patty with cheese, and say yes to the Merengón de Guanabana ($16,900), a typical dessert made of merengue, cream and Soursop, a real treat. Vegetarian dishes are available such as the red kidney bean platter, served with rice, avocado and plantain ($25,100).
(Prices on the menu vary in the Andrés Medellín).
Piccolo Café. One of Bogotá’s true classics, it has been serving Italian cuisine for almost 40-years. Family recipes from Italian born founders Cesare and Sabina Mossali, who arrived in Colombia in 1953 to open the kitchen at the luxurious Hotel Continental in the center of town, is now run by Luciano, their son, who makes sure this family restaurant remains close to the hearts of many. Quaint and graceful, Piccolo Café honors tradition with appetizers such as the Antipasto Piccolo with prosciutto, bressaola, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms and mozzarella.
The Carpaccio di Manzo ($26,900) or Prosciutto platter ($31,700) are also good options to begin with. Pasta with 3 cheeses ($30,000) or gnocchi with pesto ($28,100) are good choices as a secondo. Main courses are served with the contorno or side dish such as the Cotoletta alle Milanese ($39,500) that can be enjoyed with puree, or the classic lasagna alla Bolognese ($28,300), one of the emblematic dishes of the restaurant. If entertaining at home, take-outs are available at Pastas Sabina, right next door.
Cr 15 No.96-55. Tel: 2573394.