We’re sitting at a wooden table in a white washed room, just a few steps from the sand looking out over the San Juan del Sur Bay. It’s hard to think of a more picturesque dining venue than Meson Español. The entire two-level dining area is open to the beach, so you can watch the ocean from any spot you choose.
After serving up great Spanish food in Managua’s Gallerías Santo Domingo, we were pleased to see them finally open a San Juan del Sur branch right on the malecón. It’s a good sign for San Juan del Sur’s dining scene when popular Managuan restaurants come to town.
It also means that when it comes to food, the malecón just got a whole lot fancier.
My companions and I shared the seafood paella especial. The portion was generous, the seafood nicely golden and the rice slightly browned at the bottom of the pan. Overall a pretty good rendition of this difficult-to-get-right Spanish dish. It came sizzling hot so we were pleased to be warned by our waiter to watch out (cuidado!). We were just as happy with the steak. Huge, very juicy and accompanied by a crispy salad.
As this is a Spanish restaurant you may be wanting some tapas. You’ll find a good selection on the menu; some of the classics, house specialties as well as a sampler plate. So whatever role you want tapas to play in your meal you should be covered.
The service was bright and attentive with some traces of Spanish style formality when pouring the wine and serving the paella. It’s not the cheapest dining spot on the malecón, but still well below what you’d pay for comparable food in the US or Europe.
In fact, the setting alone may be worth the price-tag.
50m north of Eskimo
Beach front road, San Juan del Sur
Open every day from 11.00am, expect Tuesday