Flavors of San Juan Food & Culture Tours - San Juan, Puerto Rico
Flavors of San Juan Food & Culture Tours
San Juan, Puerto Rico
A visit to San Juan, Puerto Rico would not be complete without experiencing the section known as Old San Juan and a visit to Old San Juan would not be complete without experiencing some wonderful Puerto Rican cuisine. Flavors of San Juan Food & Culture Tours is the perfect way to do both!
Old San Juan, which was founded in 1521, offers some fantastic historic sights. The streets are lined with Spanish architecture dating back to the arrival of Christopher Columbus making it a photographer’s paradise.
An impressive 42 foot high sandstone city wall still stands at the seas edge and has protected the capital city since the 16th century. The San Cristobal fortress (1634) is the largest fort ever built by the Spaniards in the new world and the Castillo San Felipe del Morro fortress (1539) rises nearly 150 feet above the sea and has survived attacks by both the British and Dutch.
Flavors of San Juan Food & Culture Tours owner and operator Leslie Padro says, “Flavors of San Juan Food and Culture Tours is dedicated to exposing visitors to Puerto Rico to the tastes, history, and culture of Old San Juan. We believe that the history, culture and cuisine of a place are closely intertwined and to truly learn about a location you must experience all three. On our tours we strive to expose guests to these aspects of Puerto Rico to give tourists a greater appreciation and understanding of the Isla del Encanto.” We chose the Foodie Lunch Tour. Our tour guide led us “on an easy two hour walk through the 16th Century Spanish Colonial city streets of Old San Juan, sharing savory signature items of the top restaurants on the islet and inside knowledge only a local can provide.”
Michael Jurado of Flavors of San Juan Food & Culture Tours provided us with one of the best tours we have experienced anywhere – and we have toured the world! To say that we highly recommend Flavors of San Juan Food & Culture Tours would be an understatement.
Michael’s knowledge of the history of San Juan is extensive and impressive. He was able to both enlighten and entertain by mixing serious history, historical peculiarities and local humor. We learned about everything from the Taino Indians to Christopher Columbus and Ponce De Leon, from the Catholic Church and convents to historic brothels! It was a thoroughly enjoyable and educational tour.
Our Foodie Lunch Tour had three food stops where we sampled recipes native to Puerto Rico .
Our first stop was a Aromas where we enjoyed Chicharrones de pollo (fried Puerto Rican style chicken), Amarillos (sweet fried plantain), and Pina Coladas (served with Don Q rum).
Our next stop was at Café el Punto where we were treated to Frappe de mango y parcha (fresh mango and passion fruit smoothie), Sopa de viandas, platano y calabaza (soup made with different root vegetables, plantain and a squash that is native to Puerto Rico), Mofongo de pollo (fried unripe green plantain mashed with garlic, olive oil and butter served with chicken in a criollo sauce (a tomato based sauce), Arroz y Habichuelas (rice and beans - the beans were thickened with calabaza - a native squash/pumpkin).
Our last stop was at Rosa de Triana where we were served Cafe con Leche (espresso with steamed milk) and Flan (a Spanish custard). We asked Michael about the local acceptance of gay travelers. He said, "Everyone is accepted in San Juan. It is not even an issue."