As of 2015, there was a new coffee shop in town — Sibu! Owned by a Guatemalan/Hungarian couple with three kids, when the family first visited Uvita, they knew that they wanted to make the area home. They came upon a work opportunity soon after and were able to make their dream a reality. As coffee lovers themselves, they noticed that there was no real cafe in town. When the opportunity arose to buy the locale where Sibu now resides, they jumped on it, renovating it and readying it for opening. Sibu is now one of the busiest spots in town during the day due to its central location, delicious coffee, and satisfying, homemade food.
- Cuisine: In the tradition of a coffee shop/lunch spot in North America + Costa Rican fare
- Hours of operation: Open Monday-Saturday 7am-8pm, and Sunday 8am-6pm
- Price range: $$ (plates are between USD $8-12)
- Serves: Coffee, specialty drinks, smoothies, desserts, breakfast, and lunch
- Recommended for: Singles, couples, families, and groups
- Address: Next to the Uvita Information center
- Phone: (506) 2743-8674
- Online: Check out their Facebook to get the latest
- Important notes: Cash or credit
Every gringa’s dream
As soon as I entered, I knew that this was no typical Costa Rican restaurant. The display case to my left was lined with cheesecake, chocolate-raspberry tortes, and lemon pies, among other delicacies. A long list of fresh-fruit-smoothie flavors were listed on a large chalkboard behind the counter — more than the average local restaurant offers — plus there were fancy add-ons like greens and spirulina. Coffee, iced coffee, cappuccinos, and frappuccinos practically dripped from the elegant menu board. In addition to cow’s milk, almond milk was an option for a dollar more. Yes, Sibu Cafe was every gringa’s dream.
At Sibu, portions are generous, as are the menu options. The menu offers pancakes, bagel sandwiches, french toast, and typical American or Costa Rican breakfast. Lunch options include burgers, burritos, chalupas, and pizza. There are vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options, even for pizza! And of course, there are plenty of decadent desserts. Even for Costa Rica, which tends to offer high-quality, homegrown coffee, Sibu’s coffee tastes exceptional.
The prices are a bit higher than other local restaurants; however, they are in the same ballpark. I enjoy Costa Rican food, but it is nice to have different options. Although some additional items (like almond milk or avocado) are not cheap, these are expensive items to purchase here in Bahia-Uvita.
Perks of the place
The first and second visits to Sibu involved me ordering the frappuccino and vegetarian bagel breakfast sandwich. The frappuccino was served with chocolate drizzles and a thick dollop of whipped cream, which was delicious. When I ordered one without a plastic straw, they brought it out with a sweet cookie straw instead! This earned them some major points.
The bagel was soft and satisfying, topped with a fried egg, cheese, and a pile of oily, sautéed veggies. Salty and slightly crispy home fries were served on the side. I was truly digging this “americanized” breakfast. The third visit, I ordered french toast. The bread was fluffy and topped with butter, syrup and fresh, local fruit. The fourth time, I ordered a veggie burger. The burger was served on a homemade bun, which was dense and somewhat heavy, but tasty. The waiters always bring over cold water flavored with cucumber, lemon, or starfruit.
All in all, my many visits to Sibu Cafe within a short time testify to the diversity of the menu, the quality of both food and drink, and to the overall atmosphere. Although it is not authentically Costa Rican, there are typical options. I believe most visitors would not be disappointed, especially gringas who want their “Starbucks, etc.” fix. They also offer free wifi!
Written by Sam Rose