Costa Rican Cuisine and Culture on Display This Weekend in Zacero.
For a chance to sample traditional Costa Rican food and see genuine Costa Rican culture brought to life; visit Zacero on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of March!
The tiny town is always a tourist treat with its crazy topiary, but promises much more this weekend. While the local people may not be offering gourmet cuisine from the featured food stands, you can get a hearty meal -- or at least a taste and smell the flavors of typical Costa Rican fare.
Chicarrones are a greasy, but curiously addictive snack of fried pork meat and fat with salt and lemon on top. Mondongo soup is a firm favorite, but isn’t usually appealing to tourists as it is tripe! If these don’t sound tasty, there’s always a buttered corn cob, or the delicious sweet offerings -- such as arroz con leche (rice pudding) or Tres Leches (literally, three milks, but a creamy moist cake). Don’t eat before you go!
Saturday sees the very traditional Ribbon Race -- where horsemen show their skills by riding under a line with attached ribbons and then plucks one as they pass beneath. The rider with the most ribbons wins. The real excitement is caused by the fact that participants insist on riding full pelt to the cheers of onlookers and the plucking of the ribbon becomes a talent only the truly blessed and brave can boast!
The highlight is easily the closing at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, when Costa Rican’s Editus will be giving a free concert at the Art Academy. The Grammy-winning band play haunting tunes which combine classical and jazz influences with a Latin touch.
The fair is organized with the intention of reviving cultural roots and traditions, so expect to see genuine Costa Rica here!
Directions: "How do I get there?" Take the Inter-American Highway from San Jose until Naranjo. Follow road through San Jaunillo and on to Zacero. From San Jose, your journey should take about one and a half hours. If you have time to spare, the town of Sarchi, just down the road, is famed for its high-quality leather and wood souvenirs at prices cheaper than in the capital.
Reporting by Sara Ford
• Freelance writer for Vamos Rent-A-Car