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“The best place to experience Cartagena's flavors” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Cande

Cande
Calle 30, Carrera 5 #35 - 30 | Calle Estanco Del Tabaco, Cartagena, Colombia
+57 6685291
Website
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Ranked #98 of 376 Restaurants in Cartagena
Price range: $30 - $70
Description: The essence and flavors of a city can be captured through the colors, aroma,magic, land, citizens and numerous sensations associated with a close-knit community. With its live dancing and authentic menu, Cande is a restaurant that offers culture, music and tradition - night after night - through cuisine, colonial architecture and warm service, offering a new way to see (an feel) the city through your five senses. Cande lives and breathes Cartagena.
Restaurant details
Description: The essence and flavors of a city can be captured through the colors, aroma,magic, land, citizens and numerous sensations associated with a close-knit community. With its live dancing and authentic menu, Cande is a restaurant that offers culture, music and tradition - night after night - through cuisine, colonial architecture and warm service, offering a new way to see (an feel) the city through your five senses. Cande lives and breathes Cartagena.
Cartagena, Colombia
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“The best place to experience Cartagena's flavors”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2012

Candé has an interesting and authentic concept; food made completely with cartagenian ingredients. There are other local cuisine restaurants, but none as authentic as Candé; they don't offer anything that can't be found in Cartagena, no fusions allowed.

A plus of going to Candé is the Cumbia and Mapalé show they have every night (7:30, 8:30 and 9:30pm presentations), turning Candé in practically the only theme restaurant in the city.

The place décor is flawless and beautiful; one of the owners is local leather and accessories designer Gabi Arenas, who made a wonderful job combining elegance with cartagenian style.

The service is excellent. If you are looking to taste real cartagenian food and experience its local vibe in a elegant comfortable place, Candé is without doubt the best option. The place is located on Calle Estanco del Tabaco.


Taste: Very Good.
Presentation: Excellent.
Service: Excellent.
Value: Ok.
Atmosphere and décor: Excellent.

My recommendations: Seafood rice and Posta Cartagenera.

  • Visited March 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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376 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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English first
Tamarac, Florida
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Best meal, service and time we had during our trip”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2012

We ask in our hotel and some friends where we can have local cuisine and everybody said CANDE is the place to go. We did not have any expectations but as soon as we walk in the restaurant we felt in love. Natural fruit smell and nice enviroment; service was warm and kind from the hostess to the manager. The food was outstanding, we try some ceviches as appetizers - posta cartagenera and the lobster with coconut milk (best lobster I have tried) as main course - enyucado and coconut pie as desserts - all of them well prepared.

You have to try local cuisine and the place to go is Cande'.

  • Visited May 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NYC
1 review
“The essence of Cartagena (outstanding cuisine & culture) found in one place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2012

I am Colombian living in the NY. I returned to Cartagena in February 2012 after 18 years with a group of 10 Americans. All I wanted was to enjoy fresh seafood and show my friends the authentic and rich flavors from Cartagena. I am a foodie, I enjoy going to nice restaurants, having exquisite food, good wine, superb service, the whole experience AND If all of that comes at a reasonable price, I've found the perfect place.
The moment you walk into the restaurant you feel like you've stepped into the warm cozy home of a local Cartagenero. The decor is authentic and brings the culture of the city to life. Every detail on the table, the dishes they serve the food in and the cultural dance shows make it a perfect dining experience. Now the food: I started with the lobster soup, which was AMAZING! It was so good, that everyone tried it and we had to order more. I then had the coconut seafood rice...A MUST!.. Other people had the cheese soup, the snapper, which they raved about and fresh cebiche among others.. even the special bread is good! I wish I had gone earlier in my trip to Cande so I could have gone back more nights. I could hear people from other tables saying how much they were enjoying the meal and thanking the manager for such wonderful experience.
If you are looking for a nice, authentic dinner at are reasonable price, CANDE is the place to go.

  • Visited March 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mbabane
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Terrible service, expectations were not met - too expensive for what it is”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2012

We arranged with the owner to have a dinner at Cande for 30 people, and we discussed a price between 80.000 and 120.000 COP, but when the bill arrived we had to pay 150.000 pesos each! What a robbery, especially because we did not eat and drink in excess at any point: Cartagena is full with amazing restaurants and for 150.000 pesos you should be able to have an amazing dinner including drinks. It was very frustrating and embarrasing for us as we brought 30 friends over and they had to pay that huge amount for an average meal. The only black dot of an amazing trip to Cartagena.

  • Visited March 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jose L, Manager at Cande, responded to this review, March 27, 2012
First of all we want to deeply apologize if we do not meet your expectations on this occasion but we also want to tell all TRIPADVISOR readers that all the bad reviews we have so far are from the same group, you can tell because everyone agrees they were 33 people and the price paid by all.

One of the guests at this event had visited the restaurant once before and she had been very pleased with our restaurant but unfortunately she did not wrote a good critic that time; also on their arrival to the hotel in Cartagena the front desk recommended the restaurant since the hotel make reservations for their guest to come to Cande’ very often.

We actually felt very disappointed not to have fulfilled your expectations and we are going to make our best effort to work harder for our customers and try to have 100% satisfaction to all our guest and to make us better everyday.

Guests at this event had to pay a bill divided by an average of 33 people and they felt they paid too much. They were told that prices would be a la carte; you can tell because they say that we gave an estimated price between $ 90,000 and $ 120,000 but without knowing that some guests were going to consume products besides the ones choose by the organizers. These are the prices of the products consumed per person in this event:

Sparkling water or flat water $ 3.000
Welcome cocktail $ 15.000
Ceviche (sea bass) $ 24.000
Glass of wine Santa Rita 120 $ 13,000 an average of 2 wine glasses 26.000
Jumbo shrimp main dish $ 49.000
Dessert – local sweets $ 6.000

you can see our prices in our website, you will find our menu with prices.

TOTAL $ 123.000 TAX is included in all our prices, service is voluntary (10% )which was not rejected. $ 123,000 + 12.300 = $ 135, 300


Beyond that there were many costumers ordering beer and liquor and obviously all charged to their billed which was divided equally among all the guests but because they wanted that way.

Each of these products were chosen by the organizers, who were shown the restaurant's menu with prices included in a meeting we had earlier days, in which the manager of the restaurant and one of the partners were present to help them in every aspect, since they came from one of the hotels which makes reservations for their guest in our restaurant very often and they recommend us very much

For this event the restaurant had 2 service managers, two captains of service, a food runner, the manager and one of the partners who decided to attend to give them the best we could. 8 restautant members for 8 tables of 4 people, besides of course our kitchen and bar staff. The day of the meeting with the organizers it was explained to them that because of the way of the infrastructure of the antique house where the restaurant is located it was impossible to join tables to make parties of more than 10 people and that we (Restaurant Cande’) rather not make the event if they would feel uncomfortable by not putting tables together, but organizers decided this was not a problem at all.

We want to explain to TRIPADVISOR readers why it is impossible for us to join large tables:
Our location is an old house in the walled city of Cartagena de Indias (old town) and this is a narrow but long store; if we join tables motion is impossible for customers, restaurant staff and the members of our live show but more importantly is that we care at all times about our service and since our kitchen is small we cannot served 35 dishes at the same time but 12 dishes is entirely possible for us. We assure TRIPADVISOR readers that guest had their meals at the same time their friends in the same table had it, I explained myself more clearly, at the tables were 4 costumers and we brought 4 dishes to the table at the time so none one had to wait for the other person’s meal to start; we think this is the way it should be done in a good restaurant, service or protocol.

Many times during the dinner the manager of the restaurant along with the partner asks the organizers how everything was and they always answered that all was great! Yes, Guests repeatedly showed us their disagreement by not being able to join the tables and we tried to explain it was agreed this way with the organizers days ago; but we promise our customers that we have learned from this experience and next time we will find a formula for the organizers of large events to communicate this situation to their guests before they get to the restaurant because now we understand that for many guest of the event it was very uncomfortable, not knowing they would be in separate tables. We want to make clear that despite being at tables of 4 people we did reserve two rooms especially for this event. These rooms are the most desire rooms to be seated by our customers; moreover, there was no other table that was not from the event in these reserved rooms. It was almost the whole restaurant just for them because there were only 6 tables for our other customers who had booked through the hotels and which were settled in another room.

We gave the organizers of the event the option of sending the bill to their hotel and they could pay us the next day because we understood that collecting money from 33 people after a nice dinner is quite uncomfortable, we think we lost the magic of the event because everyone wanted to pay separate, which we know is very uncomfortable but it was not our decision. We learned from this experience; next time we will tell organizers it is better to work with a set price and to please collect the money either before or after the event so the day of the event this process does not become a bad experience.

Again we want to apologies and we hope you give us another chance so you can understand why the other reviewers express their excellent comments about restaurant Candé through this page!

Waiting to have the opportunity to give you an excellent service in another occasion as all our costumers deserve it, we want to say SEE YOU SOON,

Thank you!!

Restaurant Candé
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Cartagena’s culture its found in this place!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2012

Excellent local food, very attractive traditional live show and outstanding service!

Best meal we had in Cartagena and Colombia, no doubts!

  • Visited January 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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