In my previous post, I did a ‘blog tour’ on my stay at the Four Seasons in Costa Rica. Throughout my stay, I was wined and dined at the resort’s best restaurants, sampling some of their finest dishes… so welcome to my longest ever blog post on the most incredible mouthwatering treats.
My first taste of their luxury dining options began at Cena Sociale, the Four Season’s own Italian kitchen and wine bar that is located within the main resort.
I loved the modern décor and pebbled brick pillars, especially the collection of geometric lanterns that hung above.
After a glass of Prosecco, a range of appetisers and anti pasti were brought out to whet our palettes for the main event. The combined taste of Italian cheeses and meats took me back to my favourite European country. However my favourite starter was the crispy fried local buffalo mozzarella balls, dipped in a tomato sauce.
For my main I selected the ravioli; prosciutto filled pasta with a provolone cream sauce, sprinkled with a pistachio crumble. You can also choose to enhance your pasta with a side of seafood, so naturally I chose the scallops.
It was delightfully rich and creamy and the seasoning of pistachio was a perfect accompaniment to the salty prosciutto.
For desert we each selected from the famous gelato menu.
I decided to try three different flavours, one from each of the different categories. As a lover of unconventional combinations and eccentric flavours, I naturally chose the rosemary-fig, pear & gianduia (a hazelnut chocolate spread) and the coconut-jalapeño.
The pear and gianduia was pleasant, light and refreshing with a slight fruity after taste. The fig was a little overpowering in terms of its sweet perfume fragrance although the others enjoyed it. My favourite by far was the coconut and jalapeño. The initial coconut taste followed by a slight heat worked perfectly and was enjoyed by all.
To accompany our gelato, a box of bombolini were brought to the table, an Italian style donut with a hazelnut spread filled shot, a fun theatrical way of adding the chocolatey goo into the centre.
The next morning we enjoyed the Four Season’s breakfast at Sol y Sombra. Apart from serving the first meal of the day, this South American style restaurant and fish house is also home to a made-to-order ceviche bar, rotisserie and lively night music.
I opted for the breakfast buffet, unable to resist the incredible range of sweet and savoury dishes on offer.
I started with the hot savoury cart, choosing eggs, potatoes, chorizo (which should be served with every breakfast) and French toast topped with maple bacon.
I also choose a mix of papaya and orange juice from the self-serve juice bar.
With room for more (a energetic day lay ahead!), I couldn’t resist the pancake station, its wide range of toppings and mixtures calling my name. I opted for blueberry and white chocolate, a gorgeous combination topped with a fine sprinkle of icing sugar.
Later in the afternoon, we were invited for a private tour of the Four Season’s suites and villas, each sitting upon the jungle cliff like an adult treehouse hidden among the forest.
At every new villa we were greeted with refreshing drinks and an abundance of luxury treats…
Our last stop was a private home, owned by someone who obviously led the life of utmost luxury. We were welcomed by a tray of ice cold fresh mint mojitos, possibly the best mojito I’ve ever had.
As you can tell I was so distracted by the lavish lunch buffet that I forgot to take pictures of the rest of the house #foodieproblems. A range of fresh seafood, salads and hot meat skewers lay across a garnished wall, with local sauces and plantain crisps to accompany.
The raw tuna was just delicious, I couldn’t resist going back for more.
Following our lunch, we were invited to sample some of Costa Rica’s best beers with a tasting session. I’m not afraid to enjoy a light lager with a spicy dish but I’m definitely not an expert in the field, or a fan of the darker ales. I didn’t particularly like the heavier drinks, they were much more enjoyed by the males in the group! Us ladies were however fans of the Four Season’s own local brew, ‘Four Sins’, a light refreshment perfect for a summer’s day.
With full bellies (and slight beer breathe?!) we were shown outdoors onto the private patio where a tray of mango and strawberry popsicle bellinis awaited. As I took the first sip, I immediately knew I would be stealing the idea to hopefully enjoy in our unpredictable English summer.
With a cocktail in hand, we were invited to have a dip in the luxuriously warm infinity pool, overlooking an incredible ocean view. With celebrities such as Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian and Rafael Nadal staying in the Four Season’s private homes, I delighted at the prospect of sharing a space with the rich and famous.
For $30,000 a night (yes I meant to put that many zeros), it’s not surprising that these houses are reserved for the prestigious people of the world. It was incredible to be able to enjoy such a once-in-a-lifetime experience, sipping my bellini to the panoramic view.
My favourite (and regrettably last) taste of the Four Season’s fine dining was at Caracol Restaurant. Bizarrely translating to ‘snail’, this American steakhouse sits a buggy ride away from the main hotel, overlooking the golf course panoramas.
Before appetisers were served, we were presented with the Four Season’s signature cocktail, the ’18th on the Green’, a mixture of basil, coriander, lime, Costa Rican Cacique rum and simple syrup, served in a salt rim glass. The hotel wanted to create a cocktail that was different from the common Cosmopolitan so developed a drink made from a local spirit and herbs picked from the close by garden. The herbs are also freshly picked in front of guests for their chosen dishes.
An array of starters were brought to the table, everything from spiced tuna tartar to fine sushi sea bass with avocado. I tried my first ever oyster with a sangrita sauce, a pleasant taste but like most people, I’d rather chew and taste my food! My favourite was definitely the beef carpacio, with a top layer of thinly sliced cheese and hand picked herbs.
Sipping on fine red wine (Coyam 2010 Emiliana, a heavy blend from Chile), I scanned the steak menu, unsure of what to get. I was encouraged to order the bone in rib eye, known for its luscious texture. I’ve never eaten a bone in steak before so was intrigued for what was to come.
The steak was so juicy and tender, it pulled away so tenderly, dipped in truffle butter it melted in the mouth.
Perhaps my favourite dishes of the night were the selection of sides; caramelised mushrooms, basil mashed potato and creamy lobster mac n four cheese with a crisp crumb topping.
To end the night, we headed back to the main resort for a drink at Tico’s Bar, an idyllic setting for a cocktail, spot of sushi or mid-afternoon mixology class.
I loved the look and feel of the bar, it’s sky high ceilings, open space and nautical décor.
We each opted to try a sample of the bar’s famous rum, which sits ageing in a barrel in the middle of the lounge.
The 12 year old Centenario was slightly too bitter for my palette. However after one sip of the more mature, 25 year aged rum, I knew I would be taking some home.
Thank you (and well done!) if you made it to the end of this post! Apologies if it has left you hungry… I hope you have a delightful dish in the oven or a glass of wine at your side. I hope you enjoyed the post and would love to hear your thoughts on your favourite dish!
Next Tuesday I will be continuing to post about my Costa Rican trip, this time sharing ocean activities, rainforest adventures and traditional dishes.
See you then!