Enjoy gourmet meals in the middle of a rainforest with a window to the wild at Lapa Rios Ecolodge. Since its beginning the multi-award winning resort offers gastronomical delights that greatly enhance the enjoyment of their guests. The lodge’s restaurant Brisa Azul specializes in freshly-cooked international cuisine infused with a hint of the tropics and offers breathtaking vistas and an experience of the rainforest like none other.
The secluded resort, surrounded by exquisite natural beauty, has received many accolades from visiting guests who compare their meals to dinning in a 5 star restaurant. In fact, the staff frequently fields questions such as"We are really enjoying the food, and we are so far away from everything. Where did you get your chef?"
While Lapa Rios does not employ a classically trained chef they are proud of their staff of seven local men who have learned the art of cooking under the expert tutelage of an experienced food manager. Katie Hennessy, who oversees the culinary program, has been with Lapa Rios for almost 10 years. She resides with her husband Mike, who conducts the fishing and surfing tours and young daughter in a house near the lodge. Katie, a native of Hawaii and of Asian descent, brings a fusion influence to the culinary program combining the flavors of Costa Rica with international and Asian influences. The ecolodge also employs a waitstaff, comprised of an incredible group of young people who for the first time are being exposed to upscale service techniques and a foreign language.
Lapa Rios’ founder, Karen Lewis, who also loves to cook, developed the program and was instrumental in getting the culinary program off the ground. Karen is very keen on using local and indigenous ingredients and has always held the belief that great food is an essential part of an enjoyable, memorable experience.
Together this powerful and supportive team has redefined service in a wilderness setting and has elevated cooking in the wilds of the rainforest to a fine art. The restaurant offers a wide variety of seasonal and organic foods with an emphasis on quality and freshness and also features a fine selection of international wines to compliment the meals. These qualities combined with the stunning location contribute to what makes a dining experience at Lapa Rios appealing and memorable.
Lapa Rios is an ecolodge practicing sustainability through land conservation and education. They employ staff members, almost exclusively from the surrounding communities, who are learning and practicing newly acquired English in combination with progressing work skills. Guests who stay at the ecolodge help assist the tourism project while enjoying a comfortable location in which to experience and learn about the surrounding tropical rain forest. Together everyone at Lapa Rios--guests and staff alike--play an important supporting role in continuing sustainable development with land preservation in this pristine tropical paradise. At Lapa Rios the unique experience of enjoying international menu selections, featuring fresh foods and scrumptious desserts within a stunning rainforest preserve provides a consistently and an unexpected highlight of stay at the ecolodge.
The Lapa Rios Cookbook, published in 2001. Features recipes from Restaurant Brisa Azul, along with stories and anecdotes about kitchen development at Lapa Rios, It’s available at the reception gift shop or check the website for ordering information. For more information or to make reservations call at (506) 2735-5130 or visit their website at www.laparios.com.