2400 Boston St., (667) 212-4273, almacocinalatina.com
Fans of Irena Stein’s two cafes on the Johns Hopkins Homewood campus, Café Azafrán and Alkimia, might have been prepared for the deeply cool appeal of Alma, Stein’s shimmery Venezuelan restaurant in the Can Company. At Alma, which looks like a shelter magazine come to life, Stein makes an argument in favor of universal access to sophistication, glamour, and, let’s just say it, beauty. You can drop a lot of cash here, but you don’t have to. The menu’s core is Venezuelan street food, empanadas, Caracas-style hot dogs, and especially arepas, crisp corn-flour pockets filled with delectable meats, seafood, and vegetables. There are terrific ceviches, soups, salads, and pastries, too—thumbs way up for that Charlottetown Farm goat-milk cheesecake—and the best limeade you ever had.