You were hoping to take a tropical vacation at some point this summer. Instead, you spent a lot of effort and time trying to make the perfect smoothie bowl, which left you with a lot of chia seeds and no money. It’s OK - just head to Bongos, a colorful renovated gas station on Green Lake where the very fake (but still convincing) beach patio is covered in sand. Grab your friends (and their dogs) after a lap around the lake and work your way through Bongos’ delicious Caribbean menu, from excellent spicy shrimp with Cuban rice and beans to slow-cooked pork sandwiches that rival Un Bien’s. Make sure the tostones with cilantro sauce hit the table, too.
More spots in Green LakeSee more
Retreat is a coffee shop and bar that serves American small plates and overlooks Green Lake.
You’ve probably walked by Shelter Lounge in Green Lake, but haven’t actually gone in. You should. It’s a great spot for day drinking or a casual date.
More Caribbean spotsSee more
Paseo Caribbean Food
Paseo is a legendary Caribbean sandwich shop in Fremont. You’ll like it, but it’s not the best Carribbean sandwich in Seattle - that’s Un Bien.
Manu’s Bodega is an excellent fast-casual Cuban/Caribbean/Dominican spot in Pioneer Square.
Rumba is a great Capitol Hill substitute for a tropical vacation - island vibes, Caribbean/Mexican/Argentinian snacks, and flaming tiki drinks.
Suggested by our writers
You know Paseo, but Un Bien is where you want to be. It’s where the old owners work now, and the Caribbean sandwiches in Ballard are the city’s best.
Manolin is a beautiful seafood-focused restaurant in Fremont. It’s strangely affordable, and you can use it for just about any dining situation.
La Cocina Oaxaqueña
La Cocina Oaxaceña is the reliable Mexican restaurant you need in your life.
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