Food in El Salvador
The restaurant scene in El Salvador is influenced by many different cultures. You can choose from Italian, Korean, Japanese, French, Chilean, American, Peruvian, Mexican, Spanish, Middle Eastern, German, Chinese, Argentinian and more. American fast food chains such as Burger King, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, KFC, Subway, Quiznos, Pizza Hut, Little Caesar’s and Domino’s are also easy to find in the country’s largest cities such as San Salvador, Merliot / Santa Tecla and Santa Ana. Other franchises include Tony Romas’, Bennigans and others. Some of the best restaurants are in the Zona Rosa (Paradise, Alo Nuestro, 503).
The typical Salvadoran diet includes lots of rice and beans, seafood (especially for those living on the coast) and the most common Salvadoran dish, the famous pupusa, a round corn tortilla filled with cheese and other elements, usually chicharon (shredded pork). The best pupusas in the country are found in Olocuilta, which you can reach by taking the motorway to Comalapa airport. There you will find more than 50 pupusas stands competing for business.
Salvadorans also eat sliced fried plantains (platanos), usually with beans, sour cream, cheese and sometimes eggs, yuca con chicharron, pastelitos de carne, panes con pavo (turkey sandwiches), handmade tortillas, among other very tasty Salvadoran dishes.
If you are on the coast, be sure to try the cóctel de conchas. It’s a mixture of black mussels, lime juice, onions, tomatoes, coriander and chillies in a spicy black sauce. You can find it for around $3/bol, with freshly harvested mussels. There is also a wide range of other seafood dishes.
Many large, modern supermarkets are scattered around the capital and larger towns, such as La Despensa de Don Juan and Super Selectos, which offer local produce and a wide range of international products. Like everywhere else in the world, these supermarkets are a cheaper alternative to eating out every night.
Drinks in El Salvador
Typical drinks and fruits
Try the more delicious horchata (made from rice and “morro” seeds) and cebada (a sweet and mild refreshment made from pink barley). If you prefer (at your own risk), drink natural juices such as: Guava, Jocote, Arrayan, Chirimoya, Granadilla de “moco” and Marañon. Also, try to enjoy local fruits such as: jocotes, marañon japones, green mango (with salt, lime, alhuaiste (ground pumpkin seeds), manzana pedorra (orig.from Los Planes de Renderos), “nance”, “almendras red or yellow” salvadorenias, “hicaco”, “paterna” (also try the paterna seeds, cooked with lime and hot pepper, and don’t miss the sweet and luscious aroma of “carao”.
In San Salvador, the hippest nightlife district is called La Zona Rosa. Although it does not cover a large area, it is home to many exclusive and high-class bars and nightclubs, as well as the best restaurants in the city. One famous place is a shopping centre called Multiplaza, where there are several clubs and bars. Paseo del Carmen is also located there.
In San Miguel, the famous Av. Roosevelt, which hosts one of the biggest festivals in Central America in November, you will find many bars and clubs for a sexy nightlife.