January 11, 2008
Previous Page Next page
When we returned to Fortuna, I tried using the ATM, but it refused to work with my debt card. I still had not even seen a colon (Costa Rican money) during the trip, though it hadn't caused any problems. With the exception of the supers, I had yet to see a price for something that wasn't quoted in US dollars.
I suspect the supers would have taken dollars too, but I used my credit card there (and most other places). Before leaving town I stocked up on local snacks, cheese, pop and Don Braulio - a Costa Rica coffee liqueur in a beautiful hand painted bottle.
My research on Fortuna restaurants hadn't turned up any that excited me, so I drove west, past the turn off for my hotel and continued along the north edge of Arenal Lake, 30 kilometers to the Gingerbread Restaurant and Hotel near Nuevo Arenal.
I was met at the entrance by chef Eyal Ben-Menachem. Eyal began his career in Israel, and had several years of culinary training in the US before moving to Costa Rica. He prepares an international fusion with French, Mediterranean, and California influence. The meal was served by Eyal's partner, Coryn Wallen, who Eyal describes as the beautiful Amazon that walked into his restaurant one day. Coryn also manages their art sales, but the shop was closed for the evening
All of the food at the Gingerbread Restaurant is prepared from scratch and the menu changes each day. I had a real Caesar salad, and a wonderful wild mushroom appetizer, followed by bread pudding with ice cream. My best meal in Costa Rica by a long shot.
Returning to the hotel about 8PM, the top of Arenal was not visible and it rained off and on. I tried a little of the Don Braulio coffee liqueur and was early to bed.
copyright 2008 by Keith Stokes.