NamasTe vegetarian restaurant

The advantage of living above a restaurant is that you can eat there any time you want. The disadvantage, when the food is so delicious (not to mention healthy), is that it’s hard to not eat there every day. But even if I didn’t live in the same building, I’d probably still eat at NamasTe all the time. I haven’t found anywhere else in La Paz where you can get vegetarian food for such a good price.

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Sandwiches can be had for 12-15Bs, soups and salads for a similar price and main dishes, (including all day breakfast) from 20-25Bs. NamasTe was originally a tea shop and it’s retained a nice variety of black and herbal teas on the menu. There’s also lots of fresh juices and smoothies. Being an almuerzo fan, my favourite thing is the four course lunch for 20Bs, which changes daily and leaves you feeling satisfied but not too full.

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Everything is prepared fresh to order and takes a minimum of 20 minutes, although the almuerzo is usually faster. Because the restaurant is not that big, it fills up fast and often sells out at lunchtimes (there is another room out the back, so ask if the front looks full). Get there early if you want to make sure of getting the set lunch, otherwise you can order something off the regular menu anytime.

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I don’t need to mention the cool decor or chilled soundtrack that’s always playing (and which, like the almuerzo, is never the same each day). These are just added features that make eating in NamasTe such a fun experience.

NamasTe
Hours: Monday-Saturday 8am-4:30pm
Address: Calle Zoilo Flores #1334 casi esquina (on the corner with) Almirante Grau, San Pedro

Also, there’s a newly-opened travel agency right next door which is worth going in just for the beautiful hand-painted landscapes of Bolivia.

Chocolate Caliente

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Chocolate Caliente is the sort of place that if you order a la carte ends up being expensive (for Bolivia, at least). Fortunately, they have a great set lunch menu and special offers (happy hour cocktails, for example) that make it affordable.

If you don’t want a dual-carbohydrate lunch that leaves you comatose from eating too much, this is the place to go. For 20Bs you get a good size soup, simple mains and a tea or ice cream. The soup is Bolivian but the mains are more international – burritos, quesadillas, pasta – although not totally authentic. Still, it’s all very tasty.

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Burrito and guacamole, sopa de manĂ­

Like any fancy restaurant, the decor is stylish (think skylights, leather sofas and dubious artwork) and the service average (if you ever get a smile out of the waiter on lunch shift, let me know). But it is a good value place for when you want something a little bit different but don’t feel like paying for it. It also has the best llajua (spicy salsa).

Location:
Av. 20 de Octubre 2347, near Calle Gutierrez, Sopocachi