Don Juan

A Standout Fine-Dining Restaurant that's a Real Treat for Gourmands

If the Basque-influenced culinary delights of Don Juan are good enough for the president of Colombia when he's entertaining illustrious guests in Cartagena then they're good enough for us.

  • This Is What We Love

    • You’ll be overwhelmed with the foodgasms to be savoured here. Our favourite dishes include, the grilled octopus, crayfish and lobster risotto and the chocolate mousse
    • Being on the same street as Alquimico and La Jugada, top-notch, night club options for some after dinner action
    • Eating in the company of Colombia’s jetset
    • Extremely high quality food in an understated setting
  • What You Need to Know

    • It's extremely popular so it pays to book ahead. If you can't get a table here, try their sister restaurant, Maria, located next door
    • The service fails to match up to the food's high standards
    • Prices are on parr with New York or London, but worth it for the superior dining adventure
    • Don Juan is closed on Sundays
  • The Details

    Type of Food: Haute Cuisine

    Hours and Days: Mon-Sat: 12:00-15:00 & 19:00-23:00 Sun: Closed ?

    Price Range: $$$

    Address: Calle del Colegio 34-60, Local 101, Cartagena, Colombia

    Neighbourhood: Centro

    Rating: TIC User Rating

    Rating: Trip Advisor

  • THE LOWDOWN

    Our Full Review

    When the Colombian president makes his regular trips to Cartagena, Juan Felipe Camacho (Don Juan) normally gets the nod to cater for the exclusive soirees in his official Cartagena residence, the Casa de Huéspedes.

    When he's not cooking for fat-cat politicians in Cartagena looking for summit special, Camacho is serving up his particular take on the new Basque gastronomic phenomenon in his understated but immaculate restaurant on Calle del Colegio.

    Having passed through the kitchens of no less than three of San Sebastian's three Michelin star restaurants—under the tutelage of Martin Berasategui, Pedro Subijana at Akelare and Juan Mari Arzak-he returned to his home country in 2003, to set up his own venture in the historic center of Cartagena.

    Two years after making a name for himself with his numerical debut he broke ranks  with the interiors from his wife Maria Pinto of Pinto Design Group, he went about creating the city's top restaurant experience.

    While his celebrated mentors made their names creating a new breed of Basque cuisine that's evolutionary, investigatory, and avant-garde, Don Juan built this special restaurant celebrating natural flavours served as they should be in a designer setting that stands toe-to-toe with the elegance of the food.

    His exquisite menu includes seven starters, thirteen mains and four desserts that keep Cartagena's moneyed classes coming back for more.

    If you are on a budget forget entering Don Juan's refined surroundings but if you're the type of traveller used to paying a premium in New York and London—dinner for two is about USD$80 (without wine)for quality then Don Juan won't disappoint.

    The punchy prices are reflected in Camacho's insistence on using only the best products and paying over the odds for first pick of the local produce that does the rounds every day in the Cartagena's walled city.

    If you overdid it on lobster in the islands then his grilled lamb chops with artichokes and new potatoes provide a welcome break from the seafood routine.

    Camacho and his business partner, Alejandro Ramirez, have a fantastic sister restaurant, Maria, which is located next door. It offers a by-no-means-inferior alternative to Don Juan, if you’re unable to get a table there.

LOCATION & MAP

  • Centro

    Cartagena's nerve centre serves up breathtaking colonial architecture, the city's top attractions, finest hotels, eateries and drinking dens as well as being the administrative and cultural heart of the city. 

    Centro has lost none of its importance thanks to the universal lure of its colonial pomp and the concentration of government buildings, hotels, tourist attractions, bars and restaurants in the area. 

    Cartagena's finest hotels and restaurants have taken over the uber-casas built by slave traders and Spanish plunderers in the 17th century. 

    The richest residents knocked up stunning two and three-storey mansions by the westernmost tip of the walled city, where they bagged the sea breeze and first whiff of pirates. Today only those at the very top of Colombia's rich list can afford to maintain these opulent houses in their original residential state.


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