DAY 2 – January 27, continued…
We ate lunch at a restaurant called “Mojito’s” that had authentic Puerto Rican food. I ordered a chicken breast dinner with creole sauce. Paul ordered the beef mofongo. This is when we first discovered our newfound love for plantains!
Plantains look a lot like bananas except they are green and slightly larger. They taste very different than a banana, though. They are starchy like a potato but the taste is sweeter. Plaintains are used in many different dishes. Mofongo is a dish involving plaintains that are fried and then mashed using a mortar and pestle. Mofongo is often served with a meat sauce over the top. More details about mofongo later…we encountered it again during the food tour.
After lunch, we visited another fort, Castillo San Cristóbal located on the eastern end of the walled city of Old San Juan. While El Morro was designed to protect the city from attacks by sea, San Cristóbal was intended to protect the city from enemy approaches by land. The fort covers 27 acres.
San Cristóbal has five independent units, each connected by a moat or tunnel, designed to be independent should the other units fail during attack.
Here is a view of the main plaza inside San Cristóbal. San Cristóbal has everything: dungeons, tunnels, sentry boxes, huge cannons, a WWII era lookout, etc. Inside the two circular walls shown below towards the right of the photo are two wells. Underneath the ground is a huge cistern that stored rainwater collected throughout the fort.
It’s fun to imagine how it would have looked in its heyday.
The soldiers would have bunked in very tight quarters.
Paul posing with his “toy cannon.”
A view overlooking part of the fort and San Juan beyond.
A view facing the other direction, towards Old San Juan.
To cool off, we stopped at the Old Harbor Brewery, which is the only micro brewery on the island. Paul ordered a coffee-chocolate beer (what a combination!) and I ordered a mojito (Puerto Rico is known for their rum, after all).
We took a taxi back to our hotel in Candado and took a walk on the beach for awhile.
For dinner, we went to a Japanese Sushi restaurant. One of the types of sushi that we ordered was cream cheese, avocado, and plantains. So good! It was a nice ending to a full day.