Food News

Samara’s Narrow Door to Wine and Tapas Paradise

Esta publicación también está disponible en: Español

New Yorker Megan Kennedy was born into the restaurant business. Her mother owned an upscale restaurant and a neighborhood bar. As Megan puts it, “It was 5 star dining with fine wine upstairs, while downstairs we served fish and chips with shooters and a cigar.”

It is no surprise that even after a rewarding career in publishing, Megan ended up back in the restaurant business, much to Samara’s advantage.


Media Luna is behind a narrow door between a souvenir shop and a taco stand on the main street. That door leads to an expansive restaurant and lounge with Art Deco style.Megan’s goal was to create a place where you would drop in for a drink, get comfortable and call friends to come meet you for dinner and end up staying for music and dancing.


The meat and cheese platter contains some old favorites, but also with a salty and slightly sweet Jamon Iberico (Iberian ham). The platter is served with a yummy, well-balanced onion confit, a pineapple and raisin chutney and slices of fresh bread.

The bruschetta, though not traditional, is good, with a tangy Dijon and garlic aioli under the tomato basil relish. Coconut shrimp is crispy, not greasy and has a nice balance of savory and sweet. The gingery dipping sauce is served in an edible basket made of plantains.


The Caribbean chicken soup has a sweet coconut broth. However the chilero served on the side perks it up. The pistachio crusted fish fillet is crispy and nutty on the outside, light and flaky on the inside, served over garlicky green beans with a creamy white wine sauce on the side and rice.

The kitchen stays open until midnight. Small plates range from 1,500 to 3,500 colones ($2.80 to $6.65). One makes a great appetizer. Meat and cheese platters range from 3,500 colones ($6.65) for 1-2 people up to 14,500 ($27.60) for a deluxe platter for four.

They have one of the best mojitos in town and there is a nice selection of Argentinian, Spanish and Chilean wines kept in a wine fridge.. Wines are 2,000-3,000 ($3.75-$5.70) a glass.


After dinner, stay for live music twice weekly starting at 9:30. Thursdays it’s Latin Night and Saturdays there is an eclectic range— Celtic music, folk, jazz, rock….

Hours: Opens 5 p.m., closes when the party is over or the staff drops from exhaustion.

Location: 150 meters from the beach on the main road.

Phone: 8416-1852

The Good: Quality food available until midnight.

The Bad: As in all small plates restaurants, it’s easy to get carried away and order too much. Not easy to find if you do not know Samara well.