StephenL

Jan 112019
 
EL KARMALET,            JALON          966369619

 ★★☆☆☆ 

A bit disorganised

There have been a number of restaurants located at this corner of Calle Judas just off the  Plaza Mayor in Jalon in the past, the last being Barrio Fiesta which closed in 2013. El Karmalet opened at the end of 2018, just about a month before our visit.

The restaurant has been redecorated with one wall in the bar area completed covered with an interesting black and white photograph of Jalon in days of yore. In fact it was in the bar that we had lunch although there is apparently a pleasant dining room with a fireplace in the back of the building.

There was a menu del día on offer and priced at €12 but it was uninspiring; a salad, followed by ham with melon or courgette soup followed by a main course of either chicken breast or fried fish. We all decided to go á la carte.

 

We quickly discovered that many of the dishes listed on the menu were not available and so our starters were caramelised goat´s cheese salad and a tasty courgette soup.

 

 

Our host ordered bottles of a Rioja Crianza 2013 from Don Jacobi (€14) which went very well with the lunch.

 

 

The main course selections were all meat dishes, two of them using beef from Avila.

There was a T-bone steak weighing almost 900 grams that two of our members shared (and just as well as it cost over €33) and an entrecote (€14.50) which was pronounced very tasty. The lamb cutlets (€13.50) had to be sent back to the kitchen for reheating and this was just symptomatic of the disorganised service.

We concluded with coffees and chopitos of brandy kindly offered by the house, but we came away believing El Karmalet can develop into a better restaurant than it was when we lunched there. Cost p.p. €30.88

SL 64

 

Jan 042019
 
SIETE LUNAS,              CALPE     965034129

 ★★★★☆ 

A shining sun

Carrer Dr. Fleming is at the edge of the centre of Calpe, quite close to Avenida Gabriel Míro and there are lots of restaurants in this area.

Siete Lunas is located at no. 7 on the Carrer and is a modern style restaurant, which is much larger on the inside than it appears to be on the  outside. Siete Lunas is run by a friendly Dutch/German couple and has a pleasant ambiance.

 

There are two menus del día on offer: menu Siete Lunas priced at €20.75 and menu Gourmet priced at €30. Both menus offer a wide choice of starters, main courses and desserts.

 

 

 

We ordered Atun ahomado, French onion soup and Hojaldre Mariscos for our starters and all were very tasty.

 

 

 

 

Our host chose a lovely Rioja to accompany our meal from Ramon de Bilbao (€23.75)

For our main courses we had Babi Ketjap, Hojaldre with wild mushrooms, and steak with red pepper sauce. One of our group found the Babi Ketjap a bit salty but otherwise everyone else was very pleased with their choice.

 

 

 

 

 

Two of us had Siete Lunas coffee for dessert, the rest of us had coffee and brandies and this very pleasant lunch cost €34.43 p.p.

LdD 79

 

 

 

Dec 282018
 
CA EMILIO,      BENISSA        965733736/639110646

 ★☆☆☆☆ 

Trawling…

Ca Emilio is to be found on Calle Cami de Canor no.26, which is a corner site next to a roundabout in Benissa, with interesting neighbours nearby of a crematorium on one side and a large school on the other opposite side.

 

The outside wall of the restaurant has a massive mural depicting a trawler and the message that their menu del día carries the very modest price of just €9. Ca Emilio is long established and is run by Emilio, a former trawlerman from Calpe and his daughter Rosanna.

Many of their customers stop off at the bar for a drink and tapas, but we moved into their separate, rather chilly, restaurant which was decorated with rural bric-a-brac.

 

 

 

 

We all indulged in the €9 menu and starting with a prawn soup and a moist paella-style rice dish called Arroz Señoret. The soup would have benefited from being served hotter.

 

The main courses were somewhat limited and we tried Pulpo con ajos (Octopus with garlic) and Bacalao Cruet, a sort of cod stew, which while tasty, was served warm but on a cold plate.

The menu included a third of a bottle of wine p.p. so our host had to fund some additional bottles of Salinas, a light (12%) red and white wine from Utiel-Requena at €7.50 each.

 

 

 

This is a modest but friendly restaurant which does offer great value for money. The cost p.p. was just €11.70.

MH 56

Dec 212018
 
CLUB DE TENIS,               JAVEA       965791911

 ★★★★☆ 

Game, set and lunch!

 

The Javea tennis club is located on the Ctra. Cabo la Nao in the Arenal area and is well known for producing some good Spanish players, the most famous being David Ferrer. The restaurant is at the back of the complex that includes tennis and paddel courts, a swimming pool and many fine palm trees. The restaurant is renowned for rice dishes, Mediterranean fare and tapas.

It offers two menus del día; the one priced at €18 includes four starters, four main courses and three desserts. For starters we chose mussels and a delicious homemade soup. These were followed by a tenderloin fillet, sole and chicken cordon bleu.  Most of us opted for the €11 menu and enjoyed pumpkin soup and the same chicken and fish dishes from the more expensive menu and it included a half bottle of wine in the price!

Our host selected Cal y Canto verdejo white wine and the same label red, both priced at €14.

All in all, an excellent lunch in an atmospheric setting, for a reasonable price. Next time we will bring our tennis racquets!  Cost p.p. €19.26

JB 75

 

 

Dec 142018
 
TASCA EULALIA,     DENIA        965786479

 ★★★☆☆ 

Tasty Tasca

Tasca Eulalia is a family run restaurant that has been operating at Carrer Campos no. 30, just off the Marques de Campo for almost 40 years.

 

It is one of Denia´s most popular and emblematic restaurants with a very strong following by Spanish rather than foreign diners.

The ambience is relaxed and the decor is reminiscent of a country chalet using lots of warm wood.

The menu del día is priced at €14.50 and changes daily according to available supplies.

For our starters we were seduced by a wonderful crèma de zanahoria (pumpkin soup) and huevos à la flamenco, also delicious.

 

 

The main course was rabo de toro (ox tail) and arroz caldosa, a rice stew with vegetables and pork. Both dishes were appreciated by our members.  Our host selected two Valencia wines, a white called Las Blancas (€16.50) and a red called Les Alcusses (€17.50), both excellent.

Desserts on offer were fresh fruit, ice cream and pudding Castro.

 

 

We thoroughly enjoyed our lunch in this gastronomic corner of Denia which cost €20.60 p.p.

PM 74

Dec 072018
 
LA REBOTICA,           JAVEA        966461318

 ★★★★☆ 

A back room with a difference

A group of four of us visited La Rebotica, an apothecary and surgery of the distant past, but now a thriving tapas bar and restaurant on Calle San Bartolomé in Javea Old Town.

A warm and friendly welcome awaited with a good variety of tapas, however unfortunately a number of their flagship lines were not available on the day; this was the restaurant was going to close the next day for a two month holiday break.

 

 

We shared five dishes, namely Gambas al ajillo (€12), Tempura de veduras (€9), Chopitos (€9), grilled red mullet (€10) and pimientos del Padron (€6).

 

All were very tasty but we were left the thought of what might have been.

The accompanying wines were Darsena Rueda (€13) and an excellent Bai Gorri crianza (€19) from La Rioja.

For dessert we enjoyed pumpkin tart and profiterole and these were followed by coffee and brandy, which was kindly offered by the proprietor. An enjoyable lunch which cost €26.10 p.p.

RH 75

Nov 302018
 
34 de SAN NICOLAS,               BENISSA       865716345

 ★★★☆☆ 

Where in Benissa?

This recently opened restaurant is located at 34 Calle San Nicolas in Benissa in a quiet street leading up the hill from the Plaza Jaume.

 

 

 

Whilst not formally pedestrianised , the street has little passing traffic and so 34 has a number of tables on the street itself.

 

Inside 34 the décor is bright and modern, comfortable, warm and inviting.

The menu del día changes every day according to availability of fresh products and is priced at €14 for three courses and one drink. The food is typically Spanish, well cooked and presented. The service is prompt and friendly.

Although there were three or four starters all but one of us opted for the home made cocas. The cocas which are like a mini pizza bases were indeed pleasant, however the toppings were surprisingly small.

 

 

The main courses included delicious Secreto de Iberico, an enjoyable dish of rice and mussels and excellent spare ribs.

Finally the dish called Mar y Montaña which turned out to be chickpeas and squid was not rated positively by the one luncher who chose it.

Our host selected Somantano Pirineos red and white wines both priced at €11 and very acceptable.

Most of us skipped the usual desserts of flan, tarts, ice cream etc and instead had coffees accompanied by chopitos offered by the house. The 34 is a welcome addition to the stock of restaurants in Benissa and our enjoyable experience cost €19.62 p.p.

JS 72

 

 

Nov 232018
 
EL BENIASIA,            CALPE      965875533

 ★★★★☆ 

Outstanding!

El BeniAsia is to be found at Avenida del peurto no.5 within walking distance of the spectacular Peñon de Ifach in Calpe. It is easy to spot on the drive down to the port as there are a pair of golden lions outside the entrance.

Our hostess was from Shangai but the cuisine was not exclusively Chinese as it included Thai specialities. The menu options are vast and although we were five in number we chose a menu for six (€66) as the selection of dishes was wider than for the menu for five (€55).

There were nine courses included in our menu and we started with a large spring roll each served up with delicious sweet and sour sauce.

 

Thereafter we worked our way through crispy aromatic duck, sweet and sour chicken and substantial spare ribs with barbecue sauce.

Included in the menu price was a half bottle of house wine per person, both came from Cariñena, the red called Viña Arazu was rather better than the thin white called Macabeo. Our host kindly traded up to Sangre de Toro (€8.95) and a 2018 Rueda called Arribeño (7.95) that could only have been a few weeks old, but nonetheless was acceptable.

 

Our lunch continued with sizzling duck with sour sauce, pack-choi, Szechuan chicken and finally, Thai beef.  The different courses were accompanied by fried rice and fried noodles.

 

 

 

 

Most of us skipped having dessert –ice cream or flan, and instead opted for coffees with chopitos of brandy offered by the house. This outstanding lunch cost €16.58 p.p.

SL 79

Nov 162018
 
AN SHEBEEN,            JAVEA         965776197

 ★★★★☆ 

Great value at the “Irish”

An evocative revisit to An Shebeen in Javea, popularly known as the “Irish”  by our group of six; one of us, an ex-proprietor and another an inspiration for the original concept.

Now owned by four Spaniards after 5 years of closed doors, the pub remains essentially unchanged, a warm ambiance with a consistent Irish theme, of which the excellent pint of Guinness (€4.25)is a feature.

 

A well priced menu del día at €9.95 was selected by three of us, starting with a tasty “revuelto” followed by grilled hake or a meat stew.

 

 

 

All very acceptable. Those going off-piste had garlic prawns, a Hereford beef burger and a goat cheese salad curiously named after George Best. Again positive feedback.

 

 

The wines selected by our host were an excellent Verdejo from Ruedo called Ayre (€12.50), followed by an equally worthy Bobal from Utiel Requeña called Nodus (€15.75). The choice of wines is certainly more extensive under the new owners of An Shebeen.

 

All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable lunch with good value food and drinks (€22 p.p.) and the welcoming atmosphere of this Irish pub.

RH 76

Nov 022018
 
TAURINO,             ONDARA      966491251

 ★★★★☆ 

Great lunch, no bull

Restaurante Taurino is to be found on Avenida Dr Fleming 42, in Ondara just down the street from the iconic Bullring. From the outside Taurino is rather nondescript but inside it is a warm cosy venue run by Bolivians.

There are four menus del día ranging in price from just €11 to €22. There is a choice of eight starters and our members selected langoustines and a substantial goat cheese salad. Both excellent.

We all chose different main courses, three of them fish based; cod, trout and langoustines served on potato which didn´t really combine well.

 

Our meat eater had pork fillet wrapped in Serrano ham and was not disappointed. Our host selected Darsena Verdejo (€14) and Ramon Bilbao Rioja (€16), both well appreciated.

Our choice of desserts ranged from a Brownie, apple pie with ice cream and a fruit Macedonia, all very tasty.

Taurino was packed with lunchers but the staff coped very well and including coffees and chopitos our enjoyable lunch cost just under €25 p.p.

LdD 77