One of the best parts about living in Medellin is the constant stream of incredible new restaurants, bars, and cafes opening up almost everywhere you look.
There are so many places popping up that it can sometimes be a challenge to stay on top of it all. But that’s what we are here for, so you can hit the ground running when you arrive in Medellin and get the inside scoop.
Botanika Lounge is one of those spots that you’re sure to be hearing everyone talk about soon, and combines all three of the restaurant, bar, and cafe elements into one incredible space.
Botanika Lounge is less than two months old, the creation of an expat from London who brought this hip new space to Parque Lleras where it sits in the heart of the action, just one block from the northeast corner of Parque Lleras, right in front of the Charlee Hotel along Calle 9A.
As you approach you’ll immediately notice the open patio space along the corner and lush green plant life.
The name and the space itself was inspired by the neighborhood,with its lush, thick plants that line the quebradas, as they attempted to integrate the outside world into the interior.
For that reason you see all the plants on the patio, or the large green wall (backlight at night) with images of jungle scenery.
But the integration with nature and the plant world didn’t just inspire the name and design, but inspires the core concept with fresh herbs, plants, or edible flowers that are integrated into the dishes and cocktails as well, for a delicious and sensory rich experience.
Botanika Lounge has been getting rave reviews, so I just had to check it out, and I’m really glad that I did.
One might mistakenly assume from the name that it is a vegetarian restaurant, but no, there are plenty of hearty meat-based dishes on offer, which are served up alongside a delicious mix of veggies.
My girlfriend and I arrived on a quiet weeknight and were immediately welcomed by the attentive staff.
On the recommendation of the waitress, I went with the pollo crocante, who said that was one of the most popular dishes (the other being the chuzo colgante).
The pollo crocante is lightly breaded pieces of fried chicken served over a bed of greens like spinach and arugula, with a delicious cheese sauce poured over and is accompanied by french fries.
The meal was absolutely delicious, especially when accompanied by one of their craft cocktails. I got the ‘Enjoy the Basket’ cocktail, which is a Wild Turkey bourbon with subtle flavors of orange and smoky bacon, topped with a few fresh herbs.
My girlfriend opted for a hearty lentil salad, which features crunchy fried balls of lentils over a bed of mixed greens, freshly grated cheese and a light vinaigrette.
While we were both stuffed from our main dishes, we couldn’t resist trying something from the dessert menu as well, opting for the ‘tierra prohibida’ which is a big scoop of sticky sweet brownies topped with ice cream and chocolate syrup. Absolutely delicious!
We both left very satisfied and quite impressed with the restaurant as a whole. It is a new “Top Pick” for the area, for sure.
Botanika Lounge has three distinct identities that are integrated into a whole.
In the morning it is a cafe space where you’ll find people sipping on cappuccinos or cold brew as they work throughout the day on the free WiFi. You will find very reasonable prices for the area.
They also offer up some delicious breakfast options like eggs benedict, or pancakes. On the weekends they’ve even got a ‘brunch party’ where you can accompany their incredible cuisine with a bottomless mimosa if you like.
By the early evening it morphs more into restaurant mode with deliciously prepared dishes for a very moderate price.
Finally at night, especially on the weekends, it takes on its role as an upscale lounge. They offer up beer for a decent price (6.500 Club Colombia), sangria by the cup or pitcher, wines, and an assortment of expertly prepared craft cocktails for 26k.
The place looks like it will be expensive from the outside, but you’ll actually find quite moderate prices once you open the menu. As a cafe, you will find normal priced coffees and pastries for 4-5k.
As a restaurant, you will find main dishes that range between 22-33k. The cocktails are about the only thing you might consider a bit pricey, which come in at 26k, but considering what you get, it’s still a good deal.
I definitely recommend checking out Botanika Lounge while you are in town.
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