Fast Food in Costa Rica
Over the past ten years international conglomerate fast food has exploded and is readily available across Costa Rica.
“Fast food” has been in Costa Rica for decades in the form of Pollo Frito which as the name implies will fry you part of a chicken and Sodas which offer quick traditional meals.
The quality varies immensely.
The soda El Río on the southern edge of La Fortuna near Arenal volcano has excellent, hot fresh arroz con pollo (chicken with rice), burgers, ensalada palmito (heart of palm salad) and other favorites in large portions at fair prices (actually very low prices for a tourist town!). On the other hand at some sodas it’s possible to be served crunchy dried out rice with stringy chicken leather that’s been in a warming tray since the day before and might qualify as a winning entry in the microbiology category at the high school science fair.
Ask locally for recommendations and take a look at what’s on other peoples plates before you sit down.
International chain fast food is expensive in Costa Rica compared to the U.S. A Denny’s grand slam breakfast runs $13 and a burger “value meal” can be more than $10.