Tag Archives: review

Restaurante Jerusalem – Eating Vegetarian in San Juan

6 Dec

Many of you have asked me where to eat delicious vegetarian food when visiting San Juan… I even once wrote an article in Serious Eats on my favorite restaurants in San Juan and Jerusalem was definitely on that list.

Ever since I returned from a trip to Israel in April 2000, I have been enamored with the flavors of the Middle East. We spent our days eating mostly falafels, hummus, pita bread and salads. That was our menu almost every single day. And when we returned to Puerto Rico, I wanted to remember all the flavors of those travels. It was a magical trip and Jerusalem was the only restaurant that made me go back to the flavors of Israel.

In my opinion, Jerusalem has THE BEST Middle Eastern food in Puerto Rico. There are several Middle Eastern restaurants here, most of them located in Roosevelt Ave. , but none of them stand close to the food at Jerusalem.

Jerusalem has, in my opinion, the best falafels in Puerto Rico. They taste fresh and light. I am not the greatest fan of tahini sauce, but I consider Jerusalem’s tahini sauce the best as well.

I usually order the hummus as an appetizer. The olive oil on top of it tastes so fruity and delicious…

Another reason why I love to eat at Jerusalem is because they serve a vegetarian kabob platter that I just love. It is grilled tomatoes, peppers and onions served with rice and the arab salad of tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, cubanelle peppers, parsley dressed with lemon juice and olive oil. I am making myself hungry just writing about this right now…

When people want to invite me to dinner… I usually suggest Jerusalem. It has a little bit of everything and even when you’re ordering vegetarian food it does not feel like you’re missing out on anything of the traditional flavors of the region.

Have you been to Jerusalem, the restaurant in San Juan??? Tell me what’s your opinion… what else should I order besides my usual fare???

 Rest. Jerusalem – Ave. Roosevelt 1109, San Juan, Puerto Rico

Taquería Los Pioneros… Ándale, ándale!!! Arriba, arriba!!!

14 May

Ever since Cinco de Mayo week I’ve had the worst taco cravings EVER!!!

I was traveling in Dallas recently and with all the work we had, I was not able to enjoy as much TexMex fare as I wanted. So as soon as I landed back in Puerto Rico, all I wanted was TACOS. And the best tacos in Puerto Rico are at Los Pioneros.

I learned about Los Pioneros from my Mexican friend Carla. She worked with me in P&G and Los Pioneros was her favorite place to get her Mexican food fix whenever she was feeling home-sick. To me, the measure of great ethnic food is if people from that region/country love it. If Mexicans loves Los Pioneros, then it has to be as authentic as can be.

I don’t know why I don’t visit Los Pioneros more often, because I drive by it almost every time I visit the Yoga Center. They’re located on Piñero Ave. in Puerto Nuevo. It’s super casual… you order at a window and sit in one of the wooden tables with benches until they call out your number.

Los Pioneros have a full menu of Mexican delicacies… but I usually go for the Vege-Tacos. They have 3 options to choose from:

  • Tacos de Nopales – Cactus Tacos
  • Tacos de Espinacas y Setas – Spinach and Mushroom Tacos
  • Tacos de Calabacitas – Zuchinni Tacos

I have ordered the spinach tacos, but by far my favorites are the Nopales Tacos. They remind me so much of the nopales sauce I had in Guadalajara over my chiles rellenos. They’re cooked with slices of mushrooms, onions and large pieces of jalapenos. If you’re not too find of eating chiles directly like me, I suggest you look thru your filling to make sure there aren’t any big pieces of jalapeno you prefer not bite into.  Can you see the piece of jalapeño right there, with the stem still attached???

They’re sold individually and you order as many as you want. They give them to you in a platter and you go to a station where you can pick your favorite condiments to eat them with: Lettuce, raw onions, and your selection of salsas that span from the mild tomatillo to very, very spicy versions I don’t even dare to look at. Remember I am the spice WIMP.

I usually order just 2 tacos, but the last few times I have been left wanting more… like a pregnant woman that just can’t get enough of her craving. And for the record – I AM NOT PREGNANT!!! But I have made a conscious decision I will start ordering 3 tacos from now on…

So if you live in San Juan’s Metro Area or if you’re visiting and get a Mexican food craving… all you need to do is visit Los Pioneros and you will not be disappointed at all. It’s not a vegetarian restaurant, but their vegetarian options are as authentic as they can be.

Have you eaten at Los Pioneros?? Do you agree with my recommendation??? What do you love to order??? Please share your vegetarian recommendations, because if they’re not, I won’t be able to try them on my next visit…

Los Pioneros
1511 Ave Piñero
Río Piedras, PR
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