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Thread: Tin Jo

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Tin Jo

    Located in the Soledad district of San Jose, Tin Jo was established in 1972 from a Chinese immigrant family. Later sold to a Tico family, Tin Jo remains a land mark restaurant in the downtown area.

    The restaurant is split into several sections of dining areas. Some offer intimate settings of 6 tops, and the larger parlors seat smaller tables to larger banquet style events.

    While you can still tell you’re in a Chinese restaurant, the bulk of the menu has been ‘Tico’d’ to fit the local taste palate. A look around the dining room will show you a wide cross of Costa Rican society. From the upper class Tico family, working class couples , to tourists dropping by for a bite. This restaurant serves all segments of the population.

    The menu tells a story of compromise and diversifying. This menu has evolved into a wide variety of Tico styled Asian items. Many items one would find on a Thai, Japanese, or even Vietnamese menu can be found on the Tin Jo menu.

    Of all the items I’ve tried on this menu over the years, the pu-pu appetizer tray is by far my favorite. Probably because it is what mostly resembles a Chinese restaurant.

    The service is quite friendly, but a little slow. That has been my consistent experience at this restaurant. The food has always been hot when it arrived, so it may be the kitchen that is slow.

    The décor is something close to genuine. When you’re seated at a table in Tin Jo, it is hard to tell you’re not in a Chinese restaurant in any modern city in the world. The staff uniforms lend to this legitimacy as well. Even down to the folded flower napkins. Tin Jo offers a Costa Rican styled Asian menu.

  2. #2
    Moderator Speedy1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    San Sebastián, San José, Costa Rica
    I never even saw this post, and it's almost 5 months old! I have to pretty much agree with whatshisname on this one.

    I like Tin Jo... I always have. It's been going strong for a long, long time. There have been one or two hiccups that caused them to close for a few weeks, but I get the feeling that that was more political than anything else.

    My basic impression of Tin Jo, for over 10 years, has been... Upper-Middle-Class Restaurant that serves Asian Food. Other than a few well-placed pieces of rice paper and a couple of paintings with some Asian-language writing on them, it could just as easily be an Applebee's or an Outback Steakhouse. It certainly doesn't feel, to me, like an Asian Restaurant... It feels like a Restaurant that serves Asian Food. As far as the atmosphere, decorations, and furnishings go... It is quite nice. Clean and quietly elegant. It is well broken up into several areas, many of which are dimly lit and give a nice feeling of intimacy and privacy. Definitely a solid choice for a "Date" restaurant.

    Despite the lack of "Asian" feeling, I don't think I've ever had a bad meal there. Everything I've ever ordered there, including the Sushi, has been above average, or better. There's nothing spectacular on the menu, but it's all very good. Lending to the lack of Asian feel, perhaps, is the fact that it's "All of Asia." Chinese, Japanese, Thisanese, and Thatanese... It's all there. Wading through the menu can take some time.

    Pricing is... Well.. a Triple Whammy. Tin Jo is located in Downtown... AND it's located in San José's Chinatown... AND it's located in Gringo Tourist Central. Calling Tin Jo a "Tourist Trap" is like calling an F-15 a "cute little airplane." Tin Jo will take every U.S. Dollar you have, and then check your pockets for loose change. A bit of an exaggeration, perhaps, but it's definitely overpriced. Nevertheless, the quality is there. If I'm with a girl that likes Asian Food, and I want to get her panties wet, Tin Jo will do the job.

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