El Cayuco: Honest Food, Friendly Service, Fair Prices

Back in  the old days (three months ago), when Penny and I lived in Santa Cruz, California, we seldom dined in restaurants. To be sure, there are some fine dining experiences in “Surf City, USA”.

But as Penny said “eating out in Santa Cruz feels a bit anonymous. Here in Todos Santos it feels more like we’re going to a friend’s home for dinner.”

El Cayuco's palapa entrance leads to an arched brick dining room

El Cayuco Restaurant, located in Todos Santos, Baja California Sur, has that family feel. It’s owned and run by the Fuentes family.

The atmosphere is pleasant. There’s a choice of seating: beneath the palapa-shaded patio, or in the garden. From your table, you can watch the cooks as they prepare food in the open kitchen.

Through arched brick portals you can see the green palm oasis of Todos Santos  spreading out at your feet. El Cayuco serves up simple seafood and a surprisingly good spaghetti with shrimp or marinara sauce. There’s a good mix of shrimp, octopus, scallops or mixed seafood cocktails to start your meal.

Fish comes at least a half-dozen different ways: Veracruz style, stuffed with seafood, breaded, in garlic sauce, or smothered in cheese.

The kitchen staff at El Cayuco takes pride in their dishes

For my money though, Cayucos really shines in the ceviche arena. For lunch, we’ll often buy a kilo of shrimp or mixed (fish/octopus/shrimp) for 150 pesos (about $12 USD), which is enough for four hungry people.

We’re still working our way through El Cayucos’ menu. Yet to be explored are marlin quesadillas, and shrimp, crab or marlin burritos.

For an appetizer, El Cayuco serves chips with smoked tuna dip, a fiery hot sauce and salsa fresca. The creamy tuna dip is outrageously good.

There are equivalent choices of  meats for machaca (shredded meat style) as well as stuffed poblano peppers.  The dessert flan in sweet, creamy and tasty.

El Cayuco is located on Mexico Highway 19 at the far northern end of Todos Santos, just before you hit the topes (speed bumps) in the road.

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2 Responses to El Cayuco: Honest Food, Friendly Service, Fair Prices

  1. Baja Joes says:

    Could you tell me where this is relative to the signal light at the “T”?

    • mikebrozda says:

      Hi Baja Joe,

      At the signal light, continue straight. Turn right at the T junction. Go past Bancomer, Hotel California, Milagro Real Estate the Cultural Center, etc. Go another 100 to 200 yards. El Cayuco will be on your right hand side just as you are leaving Todos Santos.

      The ceviche is really the thing to order at El Cayuco. It’s consistently fresh and tasty. Last night I had the spaghetti with shrimp and it was good too if you like rich creamy sauces, which I do. Tons of shrimp. I liked it.

      In the past I’ve had the breaded fish and breaded shrimp, which were OK, but not inspired. I think it varies by who is cooking when you are there.

      Let me know what you think.


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