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Bocanova is excitement on wheels, from the big-windowed space right on the Jack London Square waterfront, to the colorful ethnic touches in the warm decor, to the lineup of penguin photos on the wall, to the inventive cocktails and well-picked wines. The mostly small-plates menu offers lots of excitement, too—the dishes that worked for us were bold and interesting—and goes above and beyond to showcase the “pan Latin” flavors of Central and South America. A quinoa, shrimp, and beet salad was earthy-crunchy-meets-calypso, the wholesome grain enlivened by the sweetness of the shrimp and beets and the fruity zing of an orange vinaigrette. A shrimp ceviche, on the other hand, sported a sauce that we thought overpowered the flavor of the shellfish. Frisee, grapefruit, and radish salad said fresh flavor times 10, and its mango vinaigrette also upped the ante. A chocolate bread pudding with a cinnamon-spiked chocolate ice cream equaled loveliness in a hot ramekin. Lunch and dinner daily.
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