Chilean centoya crab

Eating Out

There are some very famous and delicious dishes to be had in Chile, especially revolving around seafood. One of the most spectacular feasts is made from the giant King Crab, known as centoya, but you won’t find that in the Limache Valley. What you will find, though, are plenty of authentic traditional country restaurants heavy on roast meat dishes, beans, pumpkin, and corn. The most famous, not least for its ridiculously gigantic portions, is called No me Olvides (Don’t forget Me), located in the village of Quebrada de Alvarado. Another option here is aptly called El Rustico.

Olmué is a very popular weekend destination for Santiaguinos and Viña Marinos, and one of their favourite places for lunch or afternoon cakes is Parador de Betty. The highway between Limache and Olmué is lined by at least a dozen other options, such as Rancho Carolina and Torro Gordo. An up-market and expensive choice is Campo Alto, which also has very fine fish and pasta dishes. An unexpected option is provided by the genuinely German Tauss Brau beergarden, off the highway at bus stop no. 8; and if you like Italian ice cream, you have to try El Triestino.

In San Francisco de Limache, there are several restaurants around the main square, ranging from Sushi take-away, Chilean courtyard meals, to Argentinean pizza at Casa Wagner. An excellent daily lunch menu is offered by the vegetarian restaurant El Canelo. Lunch in a beautiful park setting can be found at the Ferienheim on Caupolican street, which is also home to the fabulous cafe Mürken that makes everything in-house: cheesecake, chocolate truffles, savoury pastries, cookies and lots more. In Limache Viejo, expensive but authentic pasta dishes are offered at the Club Italiano and you can also eat a cheaper standard Chilean lunch menu.

A fish lunch at the beautiful country house known as Humberstone, in the neighbouring Quillota Valley is a real treat, and there is a local bus that takes you almost door to door from the Quinta Escondida.

Without a doubt,  the most varied and cosmopolitan eating and drinking options are on the coast, in Valparaíso and Viña del Mar. Fortunately, both are easily reached and make for wonderful culinary day trips, either by car or via the metro train. A great place to start is Portales Metro Station, where a whole row of fish restaurants line the beach.

Portales fish restaurants
Portales fish restaurants

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