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Ratings and reviews

Travellers' Choice2022
RATINGS
Food
Service
Value
Atmosphere

Mentioned in

  • Costa Rica Hiking Adventure - 10 Dayskimkim.com
  • Costa Rica Culinary Tour - 8 Dayskimkim.com

Food and ambience

Local cuisine, Latin, Central American, Costa Rican, International
About
Our cuisine features a contemporary concept, influenced by the classic European cuisine, Asia and Latin America, from an eloquent and modern perspective. Our steaks are locally produced, with very high farming standards; and our seafood and fish dishes are amongst the preferred by our guests, for whom our menu also offers many vegetarian options, made with ingredients which, in most cases, are harvested in our own farm, pesticide-free.
PRICE RANGE
US$6 - US$65
Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options
Meals
Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, After-hours
CUISINES
Latin, Central American, Costa Rican, International, Contemporary
FEATURES
Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Wine and Beer, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover, Accepts Credit Cards, Table Service
Reviews (2,880)
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LanguageEnglish
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Traveller rating
1,482
520
187
41
25
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All reviews risotto steak ceviche chicken hummus pineapple la fortuna costa rica sat at the bar an appetizer arenal area great dinner grandma appetizers tatiana presentation jose
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Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

Over all We were very, very, disappointed!!! It's not very often that we give a bad review. A lovely refined restaurant with good service. BUT We suggest you find somewhere else to eat. It started well and went down hill. Very good, refined, well presented,...great tasting entree starters. Followed by a mediocre main course. Such a contrast! it made me think that there were two different chefs for each course with completely different skills sets!!! The main courses both had very poorly cooked meat and both were bland tasting which was too much of a coincidence for it to have been just the menus choice. I started with Tuna tiradito, wakame, avocado, orange, togarashi and soy with organic radishes ......................................................¢6 500 Which was very nice, good tasting sauces, a great starter! Followed by Grilled Pork Rose Steak, roasted sweet potatoes, fennel seed candy, roasted pepper fresh salad and spinach. .............................................................................................¢16 500 Unfortunately the meat was way over cooked and tough the sauce was bland very disappointing dish in all respects, the contrast was unbelievably great that it makes me think it was impossible to have been cooked by the same chef!!! Sue had Beets salad with gorgonzola, mixed greens, pears, nut praline (v)............................................................................¢6 800 She found it very pleasant although the Gorgonzola was a little lacking. Followed by Grandma’s roasted chicken, seasoned with coffee, choco- late, and tarragon; with honey BBQ glaze, wrapped in banana leaves..................................................................¢13 400 It reads so well but lacks any kind of punch, the sauce was just sticky and sweet and amateurishly over, took all tastes, it was if it was a griddle commis chef had cooked it. An unbelievable contrast in courses and over all left us disappointed. We could not advise anyone to eat here and expect consistency. Personally we will not be eating here again.More

Date of visit: January 2023
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Restaurant's Favourite
Reviewed August 21, 2022 via mobile

Looked at several restaurants tonight before seeing the menu here. Easily the best menu in the area, so we dined here. It was busy but they made room for us and service was fantastic. We had Jose and joco. My boyfriend is a private chef...and it makes going out to restaurants hard sometimes since his food is so good. This place blew our minds, the food was absolutely amazing. We ordered several starters and a few entrees, and dessert. Every single thing was incredible. I wasn’t even hungry when we got here and I couldn’t stop eating. Really highly recommend this place!!More

Date of visit: August 2022
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Solano7, Marketing at Don Rufino, responded to this reviewResponded August 22, 2022

Thank you for the wonderful review and for taking the time to share your feedback with Don Rufino. Our priority is customer service! Kind folks like you make our job a pleasure. See you soon!

Reviewed 1 week ago

We had dinner here the other night…wonderful ambience and the food was superb as well….beautifully presented….very good service provided by the waitstaff.

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed 1 week ago

We enjoyed our dinner at this highly recommended restaurant in La Fortuna's center. Good food, service, and atmosphere.

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

We had the ceviche, beet salad and shrimp tagliatelle They were all really nicely flavoured The restaurant was busy and had a nice relaxed vibe Service was attentive and friendly Definitely recommend

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

The food was absolutely fabulous. First rate beet salad, the risotto and the steak were all great, and so were the desserts.

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago

The absolute best meal we had in Costa Rica. Fantastic meal, fantastic service, fantastic experience.

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

5/5 we enjoyed sitting at the bar, the service was outstanding and the food was even better. Great wine selection. The ceviche and risotto were our favorites.

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

My name is Donald Serrano. I have enjoyed Don Rufino restaurant since it opened 17 years ago. Hence, I have visited La Fortuna in the last 21 years, and every time I come to La Fortuna, Don Rufino is a must for me! The service...is outstanding! To the point that I have seen the staff bending backward to make my experience more than complete, instead, I would say perfect! Even though there are many specialties in their menu, I'm a meat eater person, and I have been satisfied every time. The staff has become an important part of life because of the long-time friendships I have developed. I have to say that as long as I'm alive, you will find me here! I wrote this review with the intention to let others know that Don Rufino is a place where you will find a more detailed explanation of how special you are!!!More

Date of visit: January 2023
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

My family and I went there for dinner and had high hopes for this place but felt the food was mediocre especially for the price. Wish our experience was different.

Date of visit: December 2022
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago

No clue how these reviews were aggregated. Everything is soaked in unappetizing sauces (including a grilled rib eye). If you are into good food, just avoid this place. Worst meal we had in 10 nights in Costa Rica. The staff though were pleasant.

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We ate here on our second night in Costa Rica and it really takes some beating as the food and staff were incredible! We hadn’t booked but luckily got a seat at the bar which was fine with us but if you’d rather a table...best to book. To start we had cerviche and tuna tartare which were some of the best starters we’ve ever had! I had the chicken cooked with coffee and chocolate wrapped in banana leaves and it was divine!! No wonder it’s never come off their menu since opening - I can see why it’s a favourite. My husband had the steak which was cooked to perfection. The whole experience was fantastic and our waitress was really attentive and knowledgable offering advice on the food and drink. We had one of our best evenings of our honeymoon here so I would recommend a visit if you’re in La Fortuna looking for an amazing place to eat.More

Date of visit: December 2022
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Reviewed 3 weeks ago

The restaurant is just a block away from the central square of La Fortuna. It was packed during our meal (the reservation proved essential). On the downside, there was no a/c, only fans, and it got a bit stuffy for those not right under one....On the positive side, the food was excellent, from ceviche and fish soup for appetizers, to “grandma’s recipe” chicken and pork steak for mains.More

Date of visit: December 2022
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Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Great service and good food. We shared a number of items including a new York steak. The steak was fantastic as was the humous and the beet and pear salad. We were less crazy about the ravioli and the dumplings. It’s on the expensive side...for Costa RicaMore

Date of visit: January 2023
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Jean Jimenez, Agencia/Consultora at Don Rufino, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

We are thrilled to have you as part of the Don Rufino family! Thank you for sharing your kind words with us. It means a lot to us and to our entire team! We look forward to serving you again soon!

Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

I would definitely look elsewhere! I do just want to say the customer service was very good, the team on the front desk, the waiters and waitresses all fantastic and are doing a wonderful job so thank you. The problem here is the overpriced food!...The menu has hardly any links to traditional Costa Rican food and is simply overpriced! I don’t know how there are so many good reviews. We booked for new years as we thought it would be special but would never go here again. Firstly the welcome bread was dry, we had no clue what the butters provided were and an explanation would have been nice. The starters were fine- nothing special. The mains were tasty- we had rigatoni and risotto but absolutely nothing we couldn’t get elsewhere for much less- and we could have been anywhere- not Costa Rica! It just isn’t worth the price at all! I also really disliked the plastic water bottles- we were asked about water and said yes- the waiter just brought the biggest bottle without asking (1.5l) which was not needed when there is a smaller one available but not offered. A restaurant charging triple prices compared to local averages should consider sustainability and not place plastic bottles on most tables! The wines were so overpriced too. Such a shame as there is so much potential but it honestly feels like a tourist trap, overcharging for ok food and we would highly recommend choosing a local restaurant, which is most likely family run and 100% better quality food and experience all round.More

Date of visit: January 2023
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WilliamWillner
March 17, 2015|
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Response from WilliamWillner | Reviewed this property |
There is no entrance fee, they are open till ten or eleven PM, depending upon the amount of business they have and the weather.
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DON RUFINO, La Fortuna de San Carlos - Updated 2023 Restaurant Reviews, Menu & Prices - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Don Rufino

Don Rufino is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travellers:
  • Food: 4.5
  • Service: 4.5
  • Value: 4
  • Atmosphere: 4