In Puerto Rico, chef Jose Enrique makes pineapple mojitos and garlicky pork shoulder to fuel San Juan’s nightlife.
San Juan’s La Placita square is a low-key marketplace with a 100-year-old hall where vendors sell bananas, avocados and other Puerto Rican staples. But on Friday nights, the plaza transforms into a vast, exhilarating party with live music, DJs, crowds of gorgeous salsa dancers, and stands that sell beer and shrimp and octopus ceviche in clear plastic cups.
The party encompasses the entire square and the bars that surround it. One of the busiest spots is the pink stucco building facing the market, home to the restaurant Jose Enrique. People fill the porch; they may leave to dance, but they always return, waiting two to three hours for a table. The 60-seat spot often has 100 names on the wait list.