Venezuelan cuisine has finally arrived in Tobago by way of AREPAS VENEZOLANAS!
Tucked into Buccoo Junction, this cozy restaurant serves arepas, empanadas, cachapas, pabellon criollo and other Venezuelan cuisine. After one visit, we’re addicted to the empanadas and arepas made from yellow and white corn respectively.
As the hops (and cheese) of Venezuela, arepas are a staple for our neighbors to the South, and now we know why. Stuffed with beef, chicken, cheese or black beans, two arepas make the perfect lunchtime meal. One more arepa filling to try is the Reina Pepiada – a silky chicken salad made with ripe avocado and mayonnaise.
The crispy empanadas have a soft filling of beef, chicken or cheese, and occasionally lobster empanadas (made from fresh-caught lobster) can be had. Either way, order two empanadas with a side of Venezuelan-style scrambled eggs and you have a breakfast meal that will quickly become a habit. Or try the Perico, a breakfast meal of the scrambled eggs with tomatoes, peppers, onions and cheese stuffed in an arepa. Lobster also can be incorporated into the scrambled eggs, if it’s available.
Soup and lunch combos like the pabellon criollo – Venezuelan-style shredded beef, rice & black beans, plantains served with an arepa – are also available. In addition, “local food” is on the menu via daily specials like the Stewed Beef, Parsley Cassava, Fried Plantain & Fresh Salad or the Dolphin in a White Sauce, Celery Potato & Sauteed Vegetables. Tuesdays are salad days with a rotating salad entree like the Margarita Salad w/Grilled Fish.
Fresh juices made from local seasonal fruits are also on tap; don’t miss the lovely soursop, watermelon, cantaloupe, lime and pineapple juices
Last but not least, AREPAS VENEZOLANAS sells the most delightful desserts, including one made by a Venezuelan expat – SandBar Sweets. Made from milk, sugar and cloves, these sweets are the perfect companion for the restaurant’s milky but strong Venezuelan coffee.
What We Paid: $116 for Lunch (Two Adults) – Three beef empanadas, two reina pepiada arepas, one shredded chicken & cheese arepa, and three juice orders — two soursop juices (we ordered it twice, it was that good!) and one watermelon juice.
Cuisine – Venezuelan
Serving – Breakfast; Lunch
Hours – Tuesday – Friday: 7am – 2pm; Fridays: 5pm – 9pm; Saturdays: 8am – 2pm.
Features – Counter-style service; Limited seating
Good to Know – Cash only (for now); Call ahead if you’re in a hurry, the arepas are usually made to order; Lunch is generally ready at 11am and may sell out early, so call ahead to reserve; Delivery (limited area) is available.
Address/Phone – Buccoo Strip Plaza (on the right, just after the Buccoo Junction turn), Buccoo, Tobago; (868) 631-1137
Website/Email – Arepas Venezolanas Facebook Page; firstname.lastname@example.org
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