Update: Unfortunately this restaurant has closed as of 06-2012.
Joyudas is known as one of the main places to eat seafood in Puerto Rico. I would call it the Seafood capital of the west coast. So why am I mentioning a seafood restaurant on Veglatino?
For many years before I became vegetarian I would visit Joyudas to consume awesome plates while driving near the ocean to get there.
When I became vegetarian I thought my visits to Joyudas would stop. But after taking some non-vegetarian friends that where in Puerto Rico as tourists, I stopped at my favorite restaurant Pino’s where I found out that they had other vegetarian customers and had a plate or two which they prepared for them.
Fully Vegetarian Meal
Pino’s had a vegetarian customer who showed the owner how to prepare a vegetarian mofongo.
We have shared recipes of our version of the Mofongo but it is mainly fried mashed plantain (or breadfruit) which is eaten plain or with filling in this case full of vegetables.
The Preparation is Critical
One of the reasons I don’t visit many restaurants is because they decide to cook meats, seafood, and my veggies in the same place. When I speak to the person preparing the food and sometimes interrogate them, I make sure they are not contaminating my food with animal products.
Kikin makes sure he prepares all our meal options in separate area that gives me peace of mind and the opportunity to visit him over and over again.
Our Latest Meal at Pino’s Restaurant
We went for a Sunday lunch with a friend to Pino’s. Our meal consisted of:
* Tostones de “Pana” (Breadfruit)
* Fried Cheese balls
* Mofongo de Yucca (Cassava) stuffed with Vegetables in Mojo
The appetizers where delicious. I am a big fan of “Pana” or Breadfruit. It is a seasonal item and not easy to find year round on the island. The fried cheese balls where very tasty. My favorite plate is the Mofongo de Yucca with vegetables. This is a dish I recommend if you are ever in the area because it is the best representation of a Puerto Rican Recipe made vegetarian.
After our meal we were so filled we did not have space for dessert, which I will probably cover on this blog in the next visit.
If you are requesting mofongo as a vegetarian option make sure you ask where it was fried and if it has any “Tocino” which is pig fatback mashed in either the plantain or breadfruit.
So if you are on the island seeking for places to eat on the west coast, open throughout the day, vegetarian friendly, great view of the Caribbean, and awesome wait staff, I recommend you visit Pino’s.
I have known the owner for over a decade and since he started Pino’s, I feel like I am at a family member’s house not a restaurant. This is a well-run family business that is not scared of trying new things to satisfy their customers.
Pino’s restaurant is one of the few that over the years has excelled in customer service while giving you a relaxed environment to have a meal with friends and loved ones.
So in appreciation for being such great hosts at Pino’s , stop by ask for Kikin and let him know Raúl and Lucy from Veglatino sent you. Let us know how your visit went.
Cabo Rojo, PR
phone (787) 255-3440