RESTAURANT: CariBeans in Puerto Viejo

Coffee and chocolate are part of the Costa Rican Caribbean and CariBeans offers both, plus tasty ice cream and WiFi. They're located about 50m off the main drag in Puerto Viejo, overlooking the beach. It's a tiny walk-up place that usually has a large crowd clamoring for ice cream and coffee and chocolate.

It is hot in Puerto Viejo so The Dog and I ordered shakes. I got a Crazy Monkey and he got.... dang. I can't remember, but it was delish. While trying to decide what to order, we both got samples of their
dark chocolate that they make right there. Ooo-wee - tasty! I bought four bars of it - 1000CRC each. The chocolate is dark and rich and formed into these little logs, wrapped in tinfoil and pastel paper with a CariBeans paper label pasted on.

As we were waiting for our shakes, I wandered back into the WiFi and store area. They offer a small selection of locally made herbs and potions and coffees, plus this amazing soap made by CariBeans. We bought the Orange Chocolate and the Coffee Chocolate soaps - 2500CRC/each.

So just beyond the store area is a little room that says Factory. I peeked in and one of the guys working back there motions me back and I got to see the raw coffee beans waiting to go into their big roaster and then a smaller machine busily humming as it spun the chocolate into this thick delicious liquid. He even let me have a direct taste of the chocolate as it was mixing! The picture to the right is a handful of the raw coffee beans just before they go into the roaster.

CariBeans is a lovely little spot to cool off with some ice cream or satisfy your deepest, darkest needs for chocolate or both! To see their website (and you can also order their Fair Trade coffee and chocolate for delivery), click here.