Venezuelan chef Gisela Salazar Golding’s favourite places to eat in Caracas, her hometown

Aug 11, 2017

For gourmet travellers always on the lookout for the best places to eat in foreign lands, there’s no better advice than that from expatriate chefs working abroad. Executive Chef Gisela Salazar Golding (above) of Grain Traders shares her favourite eateries back home in Venezuela.

“Venezuela is a country of immigrants, so we’ve incorporated a lot of culinary traditions into our kitchens, with influences from Africa and Europe – mainly Spain and Italy. We mostly use ingredients like plantain, corn, coconut, avocado, long rice, beef, fish, and manioca. We use very simple techniques, and our desserts always have a homemade feel. Corn is probably the ingredient we use most, and one of the most emblematic dishes is entirely made up of it – the arepa. It’s a kind of cornbread that’s eaten at breakfast, or lunch and dinner with soups and beef.”

La casa del llano

This restaurant offers 15 to 20 different types of stuffing for your arepa (corn cake). I think an arepa is best after partying, so after 2am you see people all dressed up, with a huge arepa in their hands. My favourite is the Reina Pepeada (chicken avocado salad) which is made with gouda cheese. One of the most famous arepas is the La Llanera which is made with beef tenderloin, avocado, fresh cheese, and tomato.

Av Rio de Janeiro, Caracas, Distrito Capital


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El Mercado De Conejeros

Street food is very popular in Venezuela and one of the best is our empanadas. When you go to a beach in Venezuela, locals will sell you amazing corn empanadas with different stuffings and sauces. One of the best places to have them is El Mercado De Conejeros (Conejeros Market). My favourite one has fresh cheese melted inside, but I also love the Pabellon Margariteno which is made of fish, banana plantain, black beans and fresh cheese.

Porlamar, Nueva Esparta