I was really impressed with Colombian cuisine. My top restaurant finds in Bogota include:
La Puerta Falsa: Located in the heart of Candaleria, this is a bakery and restaurant that opened in 1816. It is a tiny, crowded restaurant with the best seating upstairs. Make sure to order the traditional chicken and corn tamals cooked inside a banana leaf. You should also order the chocolate completo which is hot chocolate served with bread and cheese. The bread with cheese is known as almojabana. It is very traditional and a locals favorite. My guide normally takes people to similar places more for tourists, but I insisted on trying the real thing. They also sell a wonderful line of candies. So glad I saw the recommendation by Anthony Bourdain!! Calle 11 # 6-50
Harry Sasson: Harry Sasson is one of the top chefs in the culinary scene in Bogota. He promotes local, quality ingredients. His restaurant, Harry Sasson, is located in a faux-1938 Tudor mansion that has been transformed by the addition of a white-steel bird’s nest extension, in 2011, that makes the experience. It is contemporary and attractive with an open kitchen concept where you can watch the chefs prepare your entree. The bar with its huge glass wine cellar is the main feature of the space.
The menu is extensive. My scallop entree was one of the best I have ever had in a restaurant. It came with a beautiful citrus sauce with orange pieces and pistachios. I also ordered a side of jasmine rice with coconut plus a perfect mango sorbet. Carrera 9 y 75 – 70.
Club Colombia: Located in a warm and beautifully decorated former mansion, this Harry Sasson restaurant features Colombian specialties. It is located at Carrera 9 # Av 82 No. 9 – 11.
Mercado: This is a wonderful restaurant in the Parque de la 93 neighborhood where you will find many restaurants, boutiques and bars along the park. The design is eclectic and the menu very extensive. I loved the half chicken in a delicious coconut sauce with a perfect rice dish of pesto and raisins. The Guanabana ice cream bars or palettas from the delicious local fruit and a touch of mint or hierba buena were the perfect way to top off the meal. It has a very lively young crowd with Colombian music in the background. I had great service and a great meal! Calle 93A 12 – 73
Our recommendation when visiting Usaquen is Abasto at Carrera 6 y 119b-52. It features locally sourced food in a beautifully designed space that is full of large groups of locals. Upstairs is very comfortable with both indoor and terrace seating. I had the best quinoa salad with sweet potatoes, cashews, tomatoes and other vegetables; the freshest turkey sandwich with arugula on their homemade bread and a perfect coconut flan. It was recently featured as one of the best restaurants in Bogota. It has a deli and small shop where you can buy their products.
Gaston Acuria, the famed Peruvian chef, has a La Mar Restaurant also in the Usaquen neighborhood if you want Peruvian ceviches and other specialties. It is a large space with a contemporary decor.