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Dinner at La Canoa at Zoetry Parisio de la Bonita

During our day trip to scout Zoetry Parisio de la Bonita for an upcoming yoga retreat, we had the opportunity to experience dinner at their AAA four diamond restaurant La Canoa.


The restaurant is named for the canoes that are hung from the ceiling. It features a spacious layout with an open kitchen and ocean views. Indoor and patio dining are offered. The resort enforces a “formal” dress code for this restaurant. Ladies have a little more flexibility around this but men cannot wear open toed sandals or shorts. Jackets are not required.


When we arrived at the restaurant the hostess greeted us and offered a glass of champagne with your choice of a kiwi or a cherry before showing you to your table. There was no wait to be seated. We were presented with menus and offered still or sparkling water and wine. After making our dinner selections the waiter brought this amuse bouche of cheese with a melon relish over some sort of light crispy thing that I cannot recall exactly what it was. πŸ™‚


The bread is served with fresh parmesan that is scooped out tableside along with olive oil and balsamic.


We skipped the bread in anticipation of the feast to come but enjoyed the parmesan.


The food presentation was beautiful overall and I appreciated the thought that went into varying textures and flavors in every dish. We started with two appetizers. These seared sea scallops were served over a cherry sauce with crushed hazelnuts on the side. The scallops were slightly undercooked and the sauce was a little too sweet but it was a good dish overall.


The wood-fire grilled octopus, on the other hand, was the best dish of the evening. I have to admit that the tentacles were a little mental obstacle but after my first bite I was over that. The octopus was served with a chimichurri sauce, a grilled spring onion, roasted beets and radishes.


The salads were noteworthy. This was a grilled pear salad with a melon sorbet, fresh peas and tender greens. The thing on top is some sort of fried cheese but I cannot remember exactly what.


And check out this beautiful watermelon salad! It was a layer of watermelon, some sort of sorbet, goat cheese and mixed greens. The contrast of textures, flavors and the cold sorbet were so interesting in this salad.


I had the sea bass over wilted spinach with polenta as my entree. The fish was slightly overcooked which kind of ruined the dish for me but the flavors and seasoning were good.


Dessert was truly special. First was this sample of assorted bites.


A flourless chocolate cake with ice cream.


And the shining star of the meal…the chocolate sabayon in salty caramel sauce with ice cream. This is one of the best desserts I’ve ever had in my life.

I have been so fortunate to have some really special dining experiences this year…an epic feast at RPM Italian in Chicago with my girlfriends (which I never blogged about and still feel like I should 5 months later…it was that good!), an intimate evening atΒ The Ocean Room at the Sanctuary and now this meal at La Canoa. I love trying new restaurants and this has been a good year in eating!

What’s the best dinner out you’ve had this year?Β 

{ 11 comments… add one }
  • Liz October 4, 2013, 11:38 am

    Yay for getting some good desserts!! haha. Yes, my mind goes straight to sweets. Your meal, though, looks absolutely amazing!

    My best meal this year was at a local restaurant in New Orleans called Jaq-i-mo’s .. because of the type of food, you probably only want to go there once or twice a year πŸ˜‰

    I’ve been here multiple times in my life but it remains my absolute favorite. Warning … don’t eat that day because you really don’t want to miss you. I always start with a fresh watermelon mojito and alligator cheesecake for a group app. They then bring out green onion cornbread and a small spinach salad with a balsamic type dressing topped with a single fried oyster. For my entree I try to stick with the grilled fish of the day, red beans (no rice) and collard greens, however, I will admit I pick at everyone’s plate! I’ve honestly never made it to dessert which says a lot because I’m a huge sweets person (clearly) .. ugh, I need to go find a healthy snack now, haha, I’m starting to get hungry πŸ™‚

    • Jen October 10, 2013, 9:12 am

      i love love love cajun food!!! new orleans has a great food scene!

  • Christine@ Apple of My Eye October 4, 2013, 1:44 pm

    All the food looks amazing! I love the ambiance of restaurants like that and enjoy dressing up for them as a treat :D.

    The chocolate sabayon with salted caramel sauce looks out of this world! Feel free to send me some πŸ˜‰

  • Susan October 4, 2013, 1:59 pm

    I dined at RPM during a girls’ trip to Chicago in July and, you are correct! It was incredible!

    • Jen October 10, 2013, 9:12 am

      i know! we definitely made an “event” out of it…we were there for like 3 hours with multiple courses and shared dishes and lots of wine!

  • Kim October 4, 2013, 6:29 pm

    Helllllooooo vacation!! That food looks amazing! If they fed us food like that on a yoga retreat, I would definitely attend!

  • Haley @Cupcakes and Sunshine October 4, 2013, 9:27 pm

    Ohhh, wow. This looks so nice! I would love to try it one day! : )

  • Anne October 5, 2013, 9:24 am

    Were you alone in the restaurant ? The atmosphere looks… nonexistent. Not my style of place.

    • Jen October 5, 2013, 10:16 am

      No…..that photo is when the restaurant is empty just so people could see the layout and the view. I’m the evening it was full, dim lighting, beautiful ambiance. How can you not enjoy an intimate dinner with an ocean view!?

  • Heather October 6, 2013, 9:50 am

    Hi Jen- how do you recommend building strength in preparation for yoga inversions? As in, did you find that push-ups, pull ups and body weight exercises helped? Thanks !

    • Jen October 10, 2013, 9:13 am

      yes, having a strong chaturanga and being able to lift your own body weight is key! also, work on core strength.

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