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“Very Variable”
Review of El Pirata

El Pirata
Ranked #20 of 71 Restaurants in Bocas Town
Cuisines: Caribbean
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night
Tortuguero, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
21 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Very Variable”
Reviewed January 12, 2012

I have had varying experiences with El Pirata over the 4 years I've been coming to Bocas, but in this recent trip I experienced both the best and worst service on the island. One morning, I came in for a late breakfast (which seems common here), and received the most smiley, quick, and efficient service from a nice young black woman in a cap. If she's working, you are in good hands. That very same day, I stopped in to have an afternoon snack, imagining some shrimp and fries, and sat for 10 full minutes without anyone even noticing I had entered the building. Mind you--you have to pass by the bar and kitchen to enter, and the place is fully open with high visibility. My table hadn't been cleaned after the last guest, and had a big piece of carrot on one side. After being completely ignored, I just decided to take my money elsewhere, and as I left I noticed unhappy faces on another couple there. On my way out, I saw 4 employees, all too wrapped up in their own conversations to even care that there were customers in the place.

The next day, after checking out a few other menus, something compelled me to go back, and thankfully my favorite waitress was working again.

Overall, the food is simple but tasty, and a good quantity for the price. A nice budget option.

Visited January 2012
Helpful?
Thank djskafish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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372 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Dundas, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
“There are many better options”
Reviewed January 10, 2012

We ordered two plates for take-out. It was difficult to even catch a glance from the numerous waiting staff standing behind the bar. Once we were able to order, we decided on typical dishes we had already tried elsewhere on the island: a shrimp criolla dinner and a chicken criolla dinner. Unfortunately both were a disappointment; the food was cold on arrival, the rice was missing entirely from the plate, and the criolla seasoning of both plates made us long for the servings we had received for half the price of these plates from the smaller typical restaurants on the main street.

  • Visited December 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank macaqueee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Poor service, poor food, nice view.”
Reviewed January 5, 2012

Got off the ferry and was starving! Thought this places looks nice. The service was bad with a miserable looking waitress. The food, what was accutally on the menu, tookages and was only just ok. Saving the day, was the view from the tables. Have not been back!

Helpful?
Thank PoddyPie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
United States
Level Contributor
187 reviews
79 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
“Pretty good”
Reviewed December 19, 2011

We had a hard time ordering. Lots of stuff on the menu just wasn't served. For various reasons. Even the drinks! I ended up with my third choice. Menu was very hard to read too. It was so dark I had to use the light of my cell phone to read it. We asked for candles and they said they would bring them right away. Not! They seemed to be understaffed. The waiter remained very relaxed though. Maybe too relaxed ...
Food was pretty good, but nothing special. The coconut rice was very good though.
I liked that it was right on the water.

  • Visited December 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Lt_Frank_Drebin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
429 reviews
290 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 212 helpful votes
“Average at best”
Reviewed November 27, 2011

American food, not worth visiting unless you miss home and are in need of a sandwich. We had turkey and chicken sandwiches, one beer and a coke. $18. Not bad but there are much better places in Bocas Town.

Visited April 2011
Helpful?
Thank Motorbragg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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