RESTAURANT: Lava Lounge in La Fortuna

For lunch one afternoon, The Dog and I decided on Lava Lounge in La Fortuna. It's right on the main drag of the town near the middle. They're open from 11am - midnight. They bill themselves as "International Flavor, Costa Rican ingredients". The building is rustic with benches and tables and a bar. It's open air, as many of the buildings in Costa Rica tend to be. If you visit their website, you can see some cool shots of the place. Click on the title of this post to get to their site.

We ordered a bottle of Sangria, Ensalada Lomito, and the Lava Lounge Burger. The burger was served with fried yucca, which our server said was a "Costa Rican french fry". We requested the fried yucca with the garlic option, but it was served without garlic. The yucca came out on The Dog's plate as four large logs of fried stuff. Other than their large size, they were completely unremarkable.

That being said, everything else was scrumptous! My salad involved mixed greens and grilled veggies topped with local grass-fed steak and bleu cheese with house dressing. The dressing was a vinagrette of sorts - not too overpowering and added the right notes to the bleu cheese and steak. In a nice change from the standard salad layout - greens on bottom, then the "good stuff", this salad had a layer of the grilled veggies on the bottom, a layer of the mixed greens, then more grilled veggies, steak, and the bleu cheese. $10USD

The Lava Lounge burger was divine. Juicy and drippy, loaded with melted cheddar, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, plus bacon, mushrooms and grilled onions. As you know, a good burger is hard to find, but we found one! $8 USD.

The menu also offered various wraps, pasta, and some sushi rolls, ranging in price from $7 - $10 USD. There was a daily specials board posted with some interesting options - tenderloin medallions in sangria, tuna steak with ginger pineapple soy salsa, and coconut shrimp with mango salsa. The sushi rolls were the standard offerings.

Let me write for a moment about the sangria. Simply perfect. It was slightly thick because it had been made earlier and the fruit was well-soaked with wine. They also served it cold without ice. We quickly consumed the whole carafe. $12 USD.

Total cost - 18975CRC or $33 USD. The prices on the menu DO INCLUDE the 13% country tax, but do NOT include the 10% service charge. And these taxes are a definite thing to consider when looking at menu prices....