Food + Wine

Beach Food for Hungry Surfers

by Cathay Che

Domes Beach and Casa Islena Tapas Bar, Rincon, Puerto Rico

Ride the waves: Rincon, near the northwest corner of Puerto Rico, is the best surf spot in the Caribbean. Happily, wave-deprived East Coasters can hop direct morning flights from New York or Miami and be paddling out in the afternoon. There are beginner spots in Rincon, but Domes is not one of them. This big, spectator-friendly beach gets its name from a curved metal structure nearby (a nuclear plant decommissioned decades ago). Its reputation comes from the challenging six- to eight-foot waves that roll in all year. It's a great spot for working on your front-face carves, but be warned: If you wipe out, you're falling on reef and a good number of spiky sea urchins.

Tide your appetite: Located less than two miles from Domes Beach, the oceanfront Casa Isleña is the Spanish-style villa you wish you built for yourself 20 years ago when real estate in Rincon was a steal. It's a modest place with a bohemian vibe, nine guest rooms, a waterfront pool, and surprisingly, a tapas bar that serves tasty Thai-Rican treats, such as green papaya salad, chorizo with Manchego cheese, char-grilled octopus on white bean salad, and wahoo skewers in spicy coconut broth. These are small plates, so order a few (maybe even one of everything). A habañero Bloody Mary will help you toast any moments of glory you had out on the water.

Tapas Bar
Casa Isleña
Barrio Puntas, Rincon, Puerto Rico
Carretera Interior 413, Km 4.8
Tel: 787 823 1525
Tapas plates $4–$14

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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