Do's and don'ts in Cabrera

Makinater

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May 4, 2013
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Do:

Go get some beach time at Playa Diamante – calm, pristine and clean.

Eat at Chico's – they've got mouth watering, perfectly made Pepperoni pizza's.

Shop at Garcia's where they got all sorts of imported goods and a wonderful service.

Stop by Choripan to get some break feast or a plato del d?a. It's nothing fancy, but good food at an affordable price. Although the name of the place is deceiving – my wife cried a bit on the inside when she realized they didn't had the Argentinian picadita choripan on the menu.

Get your chicken killed and plucked from the local breeder instead of buying at los supermercados.

Don't:

Eat at the San Marino restaurant where the definition of fresh pasta and unfrozen meat means that the dried pasta is cooked just before being served, and that the meat is defrosted before it hits the grill (although my husband's piece
was still a bit icy in the middle).

Expect not to be bored. There's wonderful beaches around and incredible nature. But you get bored nevertheless. Once you've seen ten beaches you've seen them all.

Ask where the churrasco importado that they serve at Choripan is imported from. I expected them to answer Brazil or the US when I asked where it came from. But the waiter said “aqu?”. I just had to understand this mystery, so I asked: “What do you mean by here. It says on the menu that it is imported. De donde?” And the answer was: “From Santo Domingo.” Needless to say, I chose to eat pica pollo instead of “churrasco importado de la capital”.

Stay at the Azul Bravio aparta hotel right at the sea. The view is great, and it's not expensive (1 000 pesos a night). But as for the agua y luz permanente that they promise, forget about it. Our one-year-old son woke up crying in the middle of the night because of the August heat in a room without fan or AC. Lovely night indeed.

Think it will be possible to buy quality meat around here. Just stick to fish and chicken instead and you will not be disappointed.

And please add your do's and dont's in Cabrera ...
 

pularvik

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Jan 2, 2011
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Do
interact with the incredible people in this town

Do Not
live here if you need to be entertained
 

rafael

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Jan 2, 2002
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www.dr-tourist.tv
Do:

Ask where the churrasco importado that they serve at Choripan is imported from. I expected them to answer Brazil or the US when I asked where it came from. But the waiter said “aqu?”. I just had to understand this mystery, so I asked: “What do you mean by here. It says on the menu that it is imported. De donde?” And the answer was: “From Santo Domingo.” Needless to say, I chose to eat pica pollo instead of “churrasco importado de la capital”.

Think it will be possible to buy quality meat around here. Just stick to fish and chicken instead and you will not be disappointed.

And please add your do's and dont's in Cabrera ...
I assume you realize your waiter is likely not on speed dial for the Nobel prize committee but he likely has no clue. The restaurant likely buys imported beef from a distributor from Santo Domingo, where that distributor gets it is a mystery to the waiter. I am pretty sure most meat in DR is imported from US.
 

Chennifer

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Oct 18, 2008
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That's probably the case, rafael, it was still hilarious. and afterwards when we asked if they had tres leches, and she had no idea what we were talking about, that was pretty funny too.

Cabrera is really beautiful, and we've met some great people here. But on a whole I find it easier to interact with people in Sto.Dgo. It's been hard to strike up a conversation with dominicans here that last for more than 2 minutes (not counting the family we rent from or the family colmado next door). It reminds me of a small Swedish town where you need to stay for a longer period of time before people feel like they can bother talk to you.

I think we all need to be entertained, pularvik. For some that entertainment is watching beautiful nature, and others might need something else...
 

cobraboy

Pro-Bono Demolition Hobbyist
Jul 24, 2004
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Cabrera and 5 miles either direction is about to become the most expensive place to owm property in the DR. Anyone who can buy property with an eye toward rapid appreciation, that is the place to do it.
 

Makinater

New member
May 4, 2013
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Do
interact with the incredible people in this town

Do Not
live here if you need to be entertained
True on both accounts. Would've been great if you had elaborated some on the first point. Will add my info in the meanwhile:

* The founder of La Catalina Foundation - doing a great work for the community (support with what you can)

* El supersastrero Daniel - skilled at his craft and a very likeable person

* The owner of D'Sara - a woman full of joy and with a market full of great fruits and vegetables - it's a must

* Los chamacitos at el colmado My Propio Fuerza, that's where I get all my ice, snacks and the occasional haircut in the backyard

* El maletero de Caribe Tours, chattier than most sleepy Dominicans in this town

* The founders of La Esperanza project who helped us out a lot in the beginning

Lots of nice people indeed ...
 

Makinater

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May 4, 2013
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Cabrera and 5 miles either direction is about to become the most expensive place to owm property in the DR. Anyone who can buy property with an eye toward rapid appreciation, that is the place to do it.
Most definitely so. Great investment opportunities ...
 

Makinater

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May 4, 2013
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I assume you realize your waiter is likely not on speed dial for the Nobel prize committee but he likely has no clue. The restaurant likely buys imported beef from a distributor from Santo Domingo, where that distributor gets it is a mystery to the waiter. I am pretty sure most meat in DR is imported from US.
Not on speed dial, no. And she wasn't a laureate last year either. I can even tell you that she won't be one next year either, since I am Swedish and happens to know a guy on the committee. On the topic of good meat, however, I just heard that they import Argentinian beef at the hotel La Isla Catalina - so I may have to revise my previous statement about quality meat in Cabrera :)
 

Makinater

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May 4, 2013
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More do's and don'ts:

Do:

* Enjoy breathable air, cleanish streets and a serenity that makes it possible to hear one's own thoughts

* Take a walk with a stroller without having to zigzag between piles of trash, holes in the ground and other obstacles on the sideroad

Don't:

* Expect to have a normal conversation with the guy that walks around the streets babbling to himself and screaming at the cars - he's just incoherent and keeps repeating himself
 

frank12

Gold
Sep 6, 2011
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Not on speed dial, no. And she wasn't a laureate last year either. I can even tell you that she won't be one next year either, since I am Swedish and happens to know a guy on the committee. On the topic of good meat, however, I just heard that they import Argentinian beef at the hotel La Isla Catalina - so I may have to revise my previous statement about quality meat in Cabrera :)
Kjenna,

Hvor i Sverige er du fra. Hva gj?r du i Dominikanske Rep? Er du gift med Dominikanske man eller Jobber du det? Vet du det Svenske venn til William Webster? Han bor i Cabrera ogs? og ser ut som Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Frank
 

Chennifer

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Oct 18, 2008
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Moves to the D.R this summer
tjena, tjena ;)

Kjenna,

Hvor i Sverige er du fra. Hva gj?r du i Dominikanske Rep? Er du gift med Dominikanske man eller Jobber du det? Vet du det Svenske venn til William Webster? Han bor i Cabrera ogs? og ser ut som Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Frank
Hi, frank12 - Makinater is part Swedish and part Dominican, and his wife (me) is part Swedish and part Argentine. We don't know William Webster or his Swedish friend though - we don't actually live in Cabrera but in StoDgo. We just needed to get away and wanted to explore the island, and see if maybe we would rather live somewhere else here (as we've really never been anyhere else but la capital - well, my husband has a bit but that was some time ago).
 

gandolf50

New member
Apr 17, 2011
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Not on speed dial, no. And she wasn't a laureate last year either. I can even tell you that she won't be one next year either, since I am Swedish and happens to know a guy on the committee. On the topic of good meat, however, I just heard that they import Argentinian beef at the hotel La Isla Catalina - so I may have to revise my previous statement about quality meat in Cabrera :)
Argentine beef was good 45 years ago. Today it is third rate!! Stick to the US meats!
 

LaTeacher

Bronze
May 2, 2008
848
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do: be thankful you're actually in the town and not up in the hills with no way to get around. beautiful place, cabrera, but BORING. we own some land in laguna honda but i would never ever want to live there permanently
 

william webster

Platinum
Jan 16, 2009
23,864
701
113
Cabrera and 5 miles either direction is about to become the most expensive place to owm property in the DR. Anyone who can buy property with an eye toward rapid appreciation, that is the place to do it.
Who am I not to agree?

Just google Playa Grande or Aman Hotels...

Cabrera and area is not sparkling.... not at all... an acquired taste, be prepared for 50 minute drives to Playero, The local stuff is fine for day to day but not equal to Playero

Fresh veggies, fish and so on are at hand.... other things, not so easy.

Quiet, friendly, we like it... I doubt it's for everybody.

We'll see about the property values -but all indicators are good to date.

Reading DR1 as regularly as I do I see a dichotomy I do not understand... happily for me....

One denizen refers to it as ..... oh, I won't say..... just say undiscovered.
We hope it stays that way.

We are all old, drink sparingly, never fraternize w/ each others wives..... as boring as you can imagine.

When we throw the car keys in the bowl, it's for the car !!!
 

2020

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Apr 10, 2012
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Cabrera and 5 miles either direction is about to become the most expensive place to owm property in the DR. Anyone who can buy property with an eye toward rapid appreciation, that is the place to do it.
Hmm..sounds like a true real estate agent speaking.
 

gas

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Jul 28, 2013
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Why isn't Frank's bar on the list, either to go to or stay away from, haha. I'm finishing up his latest now and I want to go there and meet all the characters. Frank, are you still there? I'm visiting Sosua at the end of the month.
 

frank12

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Sep 6, 2011
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Why isn't Frank's bar on the list, either to go to or stay away from, haha. I'm finishing up his latest now and I want to go there and meet all the characters. Frank, are you still there? I'm visiting Sosua at the end of the month.
I'm in Norway working right now. I'll be back in Cabarete in the middle of October. Trust me, the same people will be still sitting at the bar.

Some things never change.

Love Frank
 

gas

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Jul 28, 2013
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Frank, how do I find your bar? I'm not familiar with the area. I'll be staying in an apartment in sosua. Sorry I won't get a chance to meet you. Love the book.
 

Rancho Para?so

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Jul 18, 2013
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DO have breakfast at Hotel La Catalina. The ocean view is amazing and the breakfast itself is great (and not expensive).

DO follow the above recommendation to eat at Chico?s (and the menu is much more than wood-fired pizza). The food and service (with English speaking staff) are fantastic; I should know...I own the place...he he he.

DO be very careful with buying "fresh fish" out here. The vast majority of fishermen out here don't keep their catch on ice, and then the fish is thrown in their freezer with no inverter; when the power goes out the stuff starts to go through the defrost/freeze cycle. Nice.

DON'T believe that you will get churrasco (or any other beef) imported from ANYWHERE at ANY restaurant in Cabrera, except the restaurant at Hotel La Catalina. The beef in almost all (I want to say "all" but will refrain myself) Cabrera restaurants is local (as in "from Cabrera"), with very few exceptions. And local butchers often sell beef from old dairy cows...let's not even go there. At Chico's we don't buy any beef locally.

DON'T even DREAM of buying ground beef at a local "butcher" here.

DON'T think you'll get good groceries in Cabrera. Garcia's Supermarket is great in a pinch, but fits in a corner of Janet's or Playero.