This bursting bowl of flavor at the Puerto Rico Open’s host is not to be missed

Asopao de pollo from the Hyatt Regency Grand Reserve Puerto Rico

The Hyatt Regency Grand Reserve Puerto Rico serves up an Asopao de Pollo you won't soon forget.

Shana Novak

Welcome to Clubhouse Eats, where we celebrate the game’s most delectable food and drink. Hope you brought your appetite.


Imagine yourself on a bluff, high above the Puerto Rican rainforest, sipping a craft cocktail while an insanely aromatic parade of local dishes merengues across your plate.

You can make it a reality if you book a blanket at the Hyatt Regency Grand Reserve Puerto Rico’s Sunset Picnic. Of course, everything you’ll taste here is wonderful, but there’s one dish you’ll write home about: the traditional Asopao de Pollo — chicken and rice stew — crafted by the resort’s culinary director, Chef Ibrahim Sanz.

According to Cocinero Sanz, who, during the Sunset Picnic, operates in a small kitchen just down the bluff, the Asopao is a dish personal for him. Generational. His recipe was passed down from his grandmother to his mother, then from his mother to him. Each family member had their own special modifications, and while his additions include traditional Spanish influences as well as African and indigenous Taino flavors, the result is a savory bowl uniquely Puerto Rican.

So what is it that makes Sanz’s version so delectable? The secret is in the sofrito — the blend of onions, peppers, garlic, cilantro and tomato sauce that serves as the Asopao’s base. Sanz says he experimented with numerous iterations until he achieved the ideal flavor and texture.

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As for beverage pairings, Sanz suggests going with a traditional Puerto Rican spirit like pitorro, a homemade rum made from sugarcane, the sweetness of which makes for a pleasant flavor contrast to the savory spices present in the Asopao’s broth.

Regardless of how you opt to enjoy it, Sanz is sure of one thing: You’ll be back for seconds.

“A lot of people don’t eat once, twice or three times,” he said with a laugh. “They keep going up to five times.”

So, if you happen to be on the island for the upcoming Puerto Rico Open at the Grand Reserve Golf Club in Rio Grande, don’t miss the picnic. Better reserve now. Editor

As a four-year member of Columbia’s inaugural class of female varsity golfers, Jessica can out-birdie everyone on the masthead. She can out-hustle them in the office, too, where she’s primarily responsible for producing both print and online features, and overseeing major special projects, such as GOLF’s inaugural Style Is­sue, which debuted in February 2018. Her origi­nal interview series, “A Round With,” debuted in November of 2015, and appeared in both in the magazine and in video form on