Restaurants in Quito
Ecuadorian cuisine never fails to surprise those who seek haven in discovering the culinary diversity of ethnicities and gastronomies of their cultures. Quito, which is the country’s capital city, is an exciting hub for exploring the authentic South American dining scene. The local chefs value the local organic ingredients which come from the Galápagos to the Amazon and from the mountains to the coast. Their ingenious methods and techniques blend both the local and international cuisines which have resulted in a kaleidoscopic array of new dishes all over the capital of Ecuador.
Undoubtedly, the culinary aspect of Quito is thriving. In this article, we have compiled a list of the 11 best restaurants in Quito you need to try. We will talk about the cuisines, techniques, pricing, and of course, the best-sellers on the menu of these high-end restaurants. Rest assured, you will not help but appraise these Quiteño masterpieces.
1. Chez Jérôme
Located within the spectacular gardens of a heritage house in the capital city, Chez Jérôme Restaurant is a palace of aroma, taste, and colors. The restaurant is characterized by its sophisticated and elegant decor which is complemented by stunning views of mountainous scenery. The overall vibe of the restaurant is cozy that will give you the perfect sense of relaxation along with some best quality meals, after spending a busy day in the capital.
Chef Jérôme Monteillet is the most Latin American French chef you’ll find in Quito, who expresses French culture and food with traditional European methods, garnished with Ecuadorian allure. The restaurant serves the country’s prominent seafood-centric dishes, such as crispy langoustines with honey and tomato. Of course, all their dishes come along with the European favorites, including the onion soup, frogs’ legs, and foie gras sandwich. This bold blend of two ethnic diversities of Ecuadorian and French cuisine is what will give you a unique culinary experience at one of the best restaurants in Quito.
Average price per person: $50
Timings: Monday – Friday; lunch and dinner.
With an eccentric decor consisting of chandeliers and colorful modern art pieces; this restaurant is located at the edge of the tranquil Parque de Cumbayá. If you are a fan of having meals with the perfect picturesque backdrop, the top floor terrace is one of the best places to eat in Quito as it offers a complete 360-degree view of the city and the surrounding mountains.
The chef, Eric Dreyer, preserves the traditional origins of Ecuadorian dishes with excellent quality local ingredients grown in his organic garden. His famous creations include the langoustine fideúa, crunchy suckling pig, and Ecuadorian Black Angus beef with native potatoes. Each dish is made with innovative techniques driven by passion and experience. Ciré serves progressive Ecuadorian cuisine at its finest and invites you to have an unforgettable gastronomic experience that your taste buds will thank you for!
Average price per person: $36
Timings: Tuesday-Saturday; lunch and dinner.
3. El Salnés Gastro - Picantería
Characterized by the minimalistic and serene environment of its lush green, plant-filled dining room; this restaurant is the first gastro-picantería in Ecuador. This diner is a contemporary twist derived with sophistication, presenting the best Ecuadorian products combined with an innovative cuisine under the supervision of Chef Mauricio Acuńa.
The menu includes starters such as fish broth with forest mushrooms. The main courses, which are considered as the house specialty, include homemade cold cuts like spicy chorizo and country-style chicken or a suckling pig. Using the seasonal Ecuadorian ingredients and organic produce, each meal is a work of art, often served with purple potatoes or pretty pink flowers which highlight the entire presentation of the dish.
Average price per person: $24
Timings: Tuesday-Saturday; Lunch and Dinner.
We are talking about the first Ecuadorian restaurant ever to land on the Top 50 Latin America’s Best Restaurants in 2020, of course, this is hands-down the best restaurant in Quito, Ecuador. This place is a spectacular product of the chefs Alejandro Chamorro and Pia Salazar, with their aim of presenting the traditional biodiversity of Ecuadorian culture, using the most inventive methods of the present day.
This fancy restaurant gains its hype for Chamorro’s unique fudge made from black clams and bone marrow with lentils. Salazar, the pastry chef, serves his popularly unexceptional desserts made from strawberries, local herbs, flowers, and sacha inchi, which is a local plant. Neuma is loved by their customers for their mind-blowing collection of natural wines and cocktails, and the fascinating part is the fact that they are made with just three ingredients. The creativity at Neuma is truly top-notch and if you are looking for a flattering cuisine in Quito, this is the place you need to head over to!
Average price per person: $85
Timings: Monday-Saturday; Lunch and Dinner.
Zfood is a part fish shop and a part restaurant, thus offering you the option to either buy the fresh catch of the day from the counter or dine in with the extensive menu of seafood starters and main courses. The place offers mesmerizing outdoor seating as well as a naval-white interior dining room, so you can choose the environment you prefer before you dig into their delicious dishes.
Coming over to their bestsellers, the fish and chip tacos, the salmon poke bowl with prawn and octopus, and the whole fish of the day with roasted vegetables in balsamic vinegar or wild rice; are the ones which make it to the list. Another best seller includes Ceviches which are made at the table with a choice of fish, prawn, octopus, and several options like peanuts, prawn stock, etc. They also have vegan options including poke bowls with oyster mushrooms or avocado quinoa salad.
The best part about Zfoods is that they claim to take responsibility for marine conservation and sustainable consumption, with no harm to the ecosystem. No doubt, this is surely what the world needs in the line of the seafood industry!
Average price per person: $40
Timings: Monday-Sunday; Lunch. Thursday-Saturday; Dinner.
6. Somos Restaurant in Quito
With her motto, “Ecuadorian born. Globally inspired,” Alexandra Espinoza is the chef-owner of one of the best restaurants in Quito. She combines her childhood experiences and culinary studies to attain a global perspective of the food she serves; ranging from Europe to the U.S, and from Asia and to the Nordics. If you are someone who appreciates the fusion of different cuisines from all over the world, an elaborate meal at Somo’s is your safest bet.
You can start your meal with some purple corn dough empanadas before jumping onto the extensive variety of mains including pulled guinea pig dumplings, Morocho dough with Hoja cheese and so much more. You can finish off on a sweeter note with their best-selling choco-pops or homemade ice-cream treats! The dining hall of the restaurant is what the customers refer to as the shrine of Ecuador, due to its decor that corresponds with their cultural heritage.
Apart from delicious food, an amusing feature of Somo’s includes a menu with popping colors and catchy, humorous phrases that are enjoyed by all customers.
Average price per person: $32
Timings: Thursday-Saturday; Lunch. Tuesday-Saturday; Dinner.
If you are looking for a sushi bar, Shibumi is one of the best places in Quito to enjoy a wondrous sushi meal. The chef Junior Córdova Galarza uses Japanese traditions as the basis of his technique and quality to reinvent dishes using the local and seasonal ingredients of Ecuador.
You can choose your meal from a variety of different rolls, such as the Shibumi kaburimaki with red tuna and crab and the selection of sushi or sashimi. However, we recommend you to take full benefit of their “Omakase” philosophy. It allows you to eat according to the chef’s selection, giving you a new level of experience as the decision of your meal of the day lies in the very capable hands of the chef.
Average price per person: $35
Timings: Monday-Sunday; Lunch. Monday-Saturday; Dinner.
8. Casa Gangotena Restaurant
Housed in a sophisticated old-world hotel in colonial Quito, the gastronomy of this restaurant is inspired by Ecuadorian, European, and Afro Ecuadorian cultures. They have developed their signature mestizo haute cuisine and if that’s what you are craving for right now, you need to try the Casa Gangotena Restaurant, which is one of the best restaurants in Quito, Ecuador.
With their menu ranging from redfish, tuna dipped in chalpi corn crust to smoked ceviches of marinated shrimp, and the main courses ranging from chicken, duck, and fish to lamb, pork, and prawn, their extensive list just never seems to end! The cuisine claims to not only revere but also elevate the country’s gastronomy and culture. With romantic aesthetics all over the property, this restaurant will give you both delicious and dreamy experiences simultaneously!
Average price per person: $70
Timings: Monday-Sunday; Bar, Cafe, Brunch, Lunch, And Dinner.
9. Zazu Gourmet Restaurant
The chef Wilson Apala uses nature’s diversity and his experimentation that is the driving force of the restaurant Zazu. The cuisine here is synonymous with contemporary, with hints of Latin influences in the meals. It is a progression of rare ingredients and focuses on bringing texture, flavor, and harmony to the food that is served.
Snow crab ceviche, octopus parrilla, and Pisco Sour cocktails are some of their best-sellers. However, if you are looking for a lobster meal, Zazu is one of the best places in Quito that serves this Ecuadorian delight. The month of August is the popular lobster season and these crustacean treats are prepared in many ways including carpaccio, risotto, and even tempura; thus giving you a chance to have a next-level experience of your favorite meal. Another prominent feature of this place is their wine collection which goes in an eight-meter high, glass-ceiling cellar. This adds to the charm of the atmosphere of the Zazu’s dining area.
Average price per person: $35
Timings: Monday-Saturday; Lunch and Dinner.
Urko is yet another best restaurant in Quito with its fine and casual dining area. The blend of concept, technique, and sustainable sourcing from Chef Daniel Maldonado is extraordinarily unique and drives many food-lovers to this Quiteno diner.
The greatest highlight of this place is their inspiration from the ancient Andean astral cycles. This implies that this restaurant varies its menus accordingly for each of the four reasons: harvest, fertility, sowing, and flowering. The ingredients come from the Andes, Amazon, and Galápagos, depending on the serving season. So when you do go to dine out at this one-of-a-kind restaurant, don’t forget to try out the bestselling Andean grains, clams with cacao, and the smoked Amazonian cachaca fish in particular!
Average price per person: $45
Timings: Tuesday-Saturday; dinner.
11. Rincón de Francia
The cuisine offered here is classic French and the restaurant serves dishes like lobster bisque and steak with peppercorn sauce. They are quite known for their series of grilled fish and other seafood options which come along with matchless tastes and presentation. Dishes with the hints of South America in the form of ceviches and Spain in the form of Spanish omelets are also a specialty of this place.
At Rincón de Francia, you can have a wondrous dining experience in a soothing Ecuadorian atmosphere. It has a vintage interior and is a place rich in history, old folk, and magical moments. The dining space gives the feel of a home, with small rooms divided by wooden panels and arched windows. Being the favorite host of many politicians and heads of state, this restaurant has been a traditional spot in the heart of Quito for the past forty years.
Average price per person: $50
Timings: Monday-Friday; Lunch. Monday-Saturday; Dinner.
We hope this list helps you in finding the restaurants of your liking so that you too can experience the exceptional tastes of Ecuadorian cuisine at some of the best places to eat in Quito.
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