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el galeon bar 
 - Costa Rica

El Galeon

El Galeon

Destination: Jaco

Los Suenos' flagship restaurant has earned its reputation over the last 12 years as the bastion for fine-dining in Herradura; and El Galeon made its reputation on the grill. Specifically, the 1,800 degree overfired, infrared broiler that perfectly chars the crust of its certified Angus beef steaks that have made the restaurant so popular. Filet mignon, surf and turf, New York strip, and 20-ounce porterhouse and ribeyes are all on the menu. But the real treat comes on Sundays when El Galeon makes its prime rib, $35, seasoned with mustard, salt, pepper and coriander and roasted for an hour, served au jus with horseradish sauce, grilled vegetables and a baked potato.

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El Galeon offers an equally creative seafood menu. Take for example, the ceviche tower –a creative twist on the Costa Rican staple – , $13, with three layers of seasoned guacamole, ceviche and salsa to soak up the citrus flavor finished with thick-cut plantain chips for scooping up the ceviche. The tuna tar-tar, $13, is a different work of architecture, with phyllo crisps rising up from the Japanese chili marinated yellow-fin tuna with sesame volcano oil. Another favorite is the crisp, fried whole red snapper, $26, served in a ginger cured black bean sauce with steamed rice and garlic zucchini.

Dessert harps on an old American classic: apple pie, but El Galeon flips the a la mode tradition on its head using its own homemade vanilla ice cream as the base for the dish, adding brandy-soaked caramelized apple slices, sprinkling a sugar cookie crumble and finished with a short bread cookie drizzled in caramel sauce, $8.

Ambiance

El Galeon's dimly-lit, thatch roof, open-air restaurant looks out over the Los Suenos marina. Marlin and Sailfish models hang above the bar beside oversized fans shaped like boat propellers.

Service

Friendly and helpful, but not classically trained in service. The servers didn't follow table service etiquette and had a limited knowledge of the wine list.

Price

Apps $6-$17; Entrees $15-$60

Hours

6 p.m.-10 p.m.

El Galeon in Pictures