Editors' Picks

Vera Restaurant

Calle 38 # 6-1 a 6-99, Cartagena De Indias (Distrito Turístico Y Cultural), Bolivar, Colombia


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If you are lucky enough to snag a table here, don’t bother showing up for dinner before 9 p.m. (Attractive Colombian couples that may be dressed in clothes by Silvia Tcherassi, the hotel’s owner, do not even order drinks until 10:30) Order what the chef recommends. Daniel Castaño, who worked at Lupa and Babbo, stops to chat at each table. Once you’ve tasted his fried chickpeas, you will find yourself craving them as the perfect accompaniment to a chilled drink on a hot afternoon. Even seemingly typical Italian dishes like Caprese salad come with a twist; a ball of buffalo mozzarella rolled in pesto sauce is served with oven-roasted tomatoes. Other dishes that had our group oohing and ahhing: the risotto with portobello mushrooms, the tuna carpaccio and the chopped asapargus tossed in olive oil and parmesan.

Thanks to a wine list more than 100 labels strong, there are fantastic New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs and Italian Barberas and much in between. Be sure to save room for dessert, though. We were so won over by the chef’s guidance that we let him choose our dolci. The Pane Mocca, a brioche bread pudding with coffee ice cream, mocha drizzle and a sour cream ricotta foam was a standout. Vera, which means true, can truly be named as one of my all-time favorite restaurants. No walk-ins; you must have a reservation.

Written by Melissa Biggs Bradley

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