Note: Post updated in 2020!
Where we’re at: I’m recapping my 2019 travels, which included this trip to the Dominican Republic in February. Need a Caribbean break of your own? Nab one of the last two spots to our Wander Women Cabarete: Aerial Arts + Adventure retreat next month!
There’s a lot to love about Cabarete. One of my top contenders? The bountiful array of fresh, healthy, and fun food available in everything from roadside luchadoras to stylish organic cafes.
I put together this guide based on my first trip to Cabarete in 2019 and plan to update it with any new favorites I find on future trips — I think Cabarete is going to see a lot of me! Are you a Dominican Republic regular? Please, leave me your recommendations in the comments, too!
Everyone loves Vagamundo, Cabarete’s popular cafe selling coffee, sweet and savory waffles, and smoothie bowls. Vagamundo Coffee & Waffles is a social enterprise that supports Niños de la Luz, a non-profit organization that works to home street kids in the Dominican Republic, Venezuela and South Sudan. Many of the staff making your insanely delicious waffles are young adults who have graduated from the home! Isn’t that amazing?
Vagamundo has both indoor and outdoor seating and is, in my opinion, just about the cutest place in Cabarete to eat — which is perhaps how we ended up here so many times! That meant we got to try much of the menu, including some of the savory bowl specials they were running at the time. I also tried my first ever green smoothie bowl here — and loved it!
Vagamundo is open Monday through Saturday from 7-5pm and on Sundays from 9-3pm.
Update: Vagamundo has moved locations since this post was first published. However, their new spot is just down the road and features even more seating, plus the same great menu and vibes as the original!
If I had a genie with three wishes, I would seriously consider using one of them to have a Fresh Fresh equivalent in every destination I travel to. For now, I’ll have to settle for the ones in Cabarete and Sosua.
I was in heaven when I flipped through the enormous menu here, which offers extensive healthy options for every meal of the day. They offer everything from fresh twists on traditional breakfast dishes to smoothies, sandwiches, buddha bowls and salads.
And it’s not just the food that’s great. The colorful and cheery design is also a treat, with options for dining on the outdoor patio or the AC-cooled indoors (a relatively rare find in Cabarete).
Keep an eye on their social media for occasional live music and pop up shops. Fresh Fresh is open from 7am-9:30pm, every day of the week.
La Mesa Taina
You know the onsite restaurant at The Yoga Loft, Cabarete’s retreat center, is going to be good, right? La Mesa Taina serves up breakfast, lunch and dinner from its waterfront location on Kite Beach. They serve a diverse menu of sushi, tapas, gourmet burgers and more, with a twist — more than half the produce is supplied by Taino Organic Farm.
I was delighted by the meals I had here during my research trip and a tour of the sister farm — and tubing down the river! — is sure to be a highlight of our own retreat here. La Mesa Taina is open from 8am-10:30PM ever day.
You simply can’t come to Cabarete without having a drink at the iconic Mojito Bar! In fact, it was our first stop — and we arrived starving, so we decided to make it a meal, too.
While the place is quite popular for their sandwiches, I went with the local plate of the day, and I was not disappointed. A classic Dominican meal with my toes in the sand? It was the perfect way to start a trip. Mojito Bar is open from 11am-11pm every day except Friday and Saturday, when it’s open till midnight, and Tuesday, when they are closed.
Roma Cocina & Pizzeria Italiana
One of our trip, we were craving comfort food (let’s face it, it was after an evening of enjoying Cabarete’s lively nightlife scene!), we were seriously craving comfort food. A little research guided us to Roma Cocina, where Italian favorites are handmade with love.
I couldn’t decide what I loved more — overdosing on carbs or the rustic chic setting of the restaurant. We’ll have to call it a tie.
Roma Cocina is open from 9am-10:30pm every day except Sunday and Monday when it is open until 10pm, and Tuesday, when it is closed.
I was so thrilled to finally get to try Honey Company on my second trip to Cabarete. This small shop and cafe sells homemade greek yogurts, local honeys, organic teas, yummy smoothies, and some great handmade souvenirs and supplies.
Opening hours are limited, so take note — you can find them Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday from 10am to 2pm.
Cabarete Coffee Company
The feel-good Cabarete Coffee Company is a must for any trip to the Dominican Republic’s North Coast. Why? It fuels you up with great eats and warm fuzzy feels.
In addition to their namesake drink, they also serve up healthy smoothies and juices, hearty breakfasts of eggs and bagels, and a range of sandwiches and salads for lunch. While you’re there you can also pick up gifts from Upcycled Sails, which employs local woman while keeping old kiting sails out of a landfill.
Cabarete Coffee Company, a parter of Mariposa Foundation, aims to provide food good for the people who eat it, the people who make it, and the earth they grow it on. Graduates of the Mariposa Center, which focuses on educating girls in the Dominican Republic, get hands-on employment training here — and 100% of the profits of Cabarete Coffee go back directly into Mariposa programming.
They also offer organic local farm and cacao tours — just ask the friendly staff. Cabarete Coffee Company is open daily from 7am to 3pm.
Technically, Blue Moon isn’t quite in Cabarete — it’s in the foothills of the Septentrional Mountains above it. Set on thirty acres with stunning hilltop views, coming here is treating yourself to a vacation from your vacation.
The fusion Indian Caribbean cuisine is served the traditional way, on the floor in a thatched-roof dining hut strewn with colorful cushions and fabrics. Banana leaves serve as the ultimate eco-friendly plates.
Much of the ingredients come from Blue Moon’s own organic gardens and their own dairy cows. Fall in love with the place? I don’t blame you — they have guest rooms onsite if you decide to stay awhile. And like so many Cabarete eateries, they also have a charitable arm — they sponsor and manage a Kindergarten and a Community Center.
When a friend in Cabarete invited me to brunch at La Cabana, I was immediately suspicious. What was this place I had never heard of before? It turned out to be a hidden gem — a charming, pastel colored cafe I marveled hadn’t made it onto my radar. The beautiful hand-lettered and illustrated menu reveals a tasty array of wraps and toasts, salads and artisan burgers, of which we could barely narrow down to order.
Closed on Mondays, and open Wednesday through Sunday for breakfast and brunch. On Tuesday, they open for tapas and cocktails — which I would love to try.
Update: La Cabana has also recently moved locations since my visit. They are now oceanfront!
. . .
Like I said, Cabarete is a dang delicious place to eat! If you’re wondering what that sound is? It’s my stomach. Wanting to get back to Cabarete — right. now.
And that’s it from Cabarete — for now! Can’t wait to be back in just two weeks…