Jun 302017
 
RESTAURANTE AZAHAR, BALCÓN AL MAR, JAVEA  965770047

 ★★★★☆ 

Lunch under the rubber tree

Balcón al Mar is a residential district of Javea to the south of Arenal between Cap Negre and Cap de la Nao. At number 3 Calle Cap Negre is to be found Restaurante Azahar, with its huge Ficus or Rubber tree. We chose to have lunch under this tree which provided a relaxing, comfortable ambience.

The menu del día is priced at €12.90 for three courses and includes a half bottle of acceptable house wine, bread and alioli.

The Thai mussels were the popular choice for the first course and the lenguado and lamb dishes were the dominant main courses.

 

 

 

 

Some of the main courses incurred a price surcharge and one of our party chose to go off piste to savour Caesar salad and Cordon Bleu.

 

 

Our host decided to trade up for white wine with a very enjoyable Alberiño called Lagar de Indra (€16).  

The only negative about eating under the Rubber tree were the flies, but this was a small price to pay for such a great outing.

The overall cost p.p. for this lunch including desserts, brandies and coffees amounted to €28.67.

JB 78

May 192017
 

NEW INDIA GATE,  ORBA,         965 584 399    (e-mail: newindiagate03790@gmail.com )

 ★★★★☆ 

It’s not just the petrol that’s four star!

 

On the winding road down into Orba from the Jalon Valley there is a petrol station on the outskirts of the town. Not an auspicious place to have a rather impressive Indian restaurant – but don’t let looks deceive you. The un-prepossessing exterior gives way to a pleasant, airy restaurant where you will be greeted with enthusiasm and served with excellent food.

 

 

 

 

 

You can, if you are counting your centimos, have a basic Menu del Dia for just under ten euros, but if you want unrestricted access to the meat courses on offer, head for the €13.95  version. We opted for a €15 Menu del Dia which included half a bottle of wine per person. The wine turned out to be a very pleasant Bach – available in red and white. On a hot day we declined the soup and all chose poppadoms, with an interesting assortment of hot chilli, onion, mango and mint chutneys.

We then had a starter course consisting of a number of tasters, mostly in batter, and although these were not especially striking (and tended towards being dry) they set us up nicely for the main course. We each chose our own type of curry, based on either chicken, lamb or beef, and in each case we found the curry a delight. Those who wanted their curry hot, hot, hot were not disappointed.

 

 

Those who did not want to venture beyond a korma were left equally happy. The meal really was very good, and the waiter was quite splendid – whoever said that you cannot learn good English from watching TV shows?!

We generally dispensed with the pudding course in favour of coffee – supplemented by a small brandy, supplied on the house on account of the fact that there were eight of us in the party.

All in all a really pleasant meal. And when you realize that the restaurant will even come and get you and take you home afterwards (as long as you live within a 10k radius, and as long as they’re not fully booked already) you will appreciate how helpful they are. There is only one downside – the setting is next to a petrol station. But even that did not prevent one of our number noting that a nightingale was singing its heart out, loud enough to drown the sound of Indian music…..

The cost per head came to a not unreasonable €17.80

MR  76                                                    

 

 

May 122017
 
LA FONTANA,                  JAVEA             965790417

 ★★★★☆ 

Life´s a beach

A first welcome to the Arenal district of Javea for the 2017 season and to La Fontana, a family owned and recently renovated restaurant, in business since 1963.

All but one of our members opted for the €16 menu del día, the odd man out chose the €21 version, the difference being in the price of the main course.

 

The wines selected by our host were a Rueda Verdejo called Cyatho (€13) and a Rioja called Carramimbre (€13.50); judging by consumption, both well appreciated.

 

 

The starters chosen were a combo of three tapas, chiperones (squid) and garlic prawns, all tasty, although the prawns were slightly overcooked.

 

 

The main course was an excellent paella con marisco, lamb and from the premium menu a slightly overcooked beef tenderloin.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our desserts were crema catalan and mousse de coco, providing a pleasant conclusion to our enjoyable lunch. Chopitos were graciously offered by the establishment. Cost p.p. €25.22. Good value for a front line Javea restaurant.

RH 75    

Apr 072017
 
LA VENTA DEL COLLAO,         BENIMAURELL,   649590538

 ★★★★☆ 

On top of the world

This establishment rewards those who have made the effort to drive deep into the mountains above Orba. Those lucky enough might also be rewarded by the sight of cherry orchards in bloom in April.

The restaurant itself is a renovated staging post and has plenty of charm and character. The large outside space accommodates al fresco dining as well as ample car parking just over the road. The location and views are quite remarkable.

The menu del día is priced at €14 which suits the country location with a selection of hearty dishes. Our party of seven chose from a range of starters including: salad, traditional sausage with a meat, spice and honey filling, cocas, chicken livers and a delicious homemade tomato soup.

Six main courses were on offer and we selected three; oven cooked lamb, confit of duck and wild boar stew.

 

 

For pudding the usual flan and tart were on offer but most of us opted for a delicious chocolate brownie.

 

Wines were not included in the price of lunch but the house wines, both priced at a reasonable €8, were most acceptable – a red Marnes and a white Verdejo.

A word of warning regarding payment; there are no facilities for cards so bring cash! Our adventure in the mountains cost €21.92 p.p.

 

JS 77     

 

Mar 242017
 
LES ARCADES,              ORBA     965088445

 ★★★★☆ 

Outstanding value

It sometimes pays off to go down a backstreet to find a restaurant offering great value food and drink. This was certainly the case in Orba where our host brought us to No. 2 Calle Canonge Sendra which runs parallel to the main street.

From the outside Les Arcades looks like a modest local bar and curiously it does not display its name, but inside there is a small restaurant with a cosy atmosphere and given the cold weather, a welcoming log fire.

Les Arcades offers a menu del día for just €10 and this includes an amuse bouche, pan y alioli, three courses, a half bottle of house wine and coffee.

There are five options for each course. The amuse bouche was a plate of delicious fried mushrooms. Our host decided against the house wine and instead selected a Rueda Verdejo called Castillo de Aza and a Ribero del Duero called Lelón both priced at just €7!

For our first course we selected entremeses, onion soup and a rustic pate. All good.

The main courses selected were roast pork, roast chicken and merluza à la romana. All really fresh and tasty.

Desserts were apple strudel with cream, profiteroles and strudel with ice cream. Delicious.

 

Our pleasant lunch was completed with coffees and brandy, all for a remarkable €17.33 p.p.

LdD 77

 

 

 

 

Feb 172017
 
TAVERNA LLORENÇ-BOTERO ,      SENIJA  965730996

 ★★★★☆ 

Genuine article

Taverna llorenç-botero is located in the heart of the village of Senija at Plaza Ayuntamiento 13.

The restaurant is small in size and the walls are decorated with paintings, plates and other bric-a-brac which create a great atmosphere.

The menu del día costs €10 and consists of six courses of tapas, a main course and a glass of wine. Our tapas courses included Russian salad, followed by a homemade Tortilla, hard boiled egg with anchovy, patatas bravas, baby broad beans and fresh salad. All delicious.

For main course we had pelota, meat wrapped in cabbage accompanied by stock. Again very tasty. The house wines were both from Utiel Requena and called Capellana, priced at €6.

 

 

All in all, a very pleasant lunch, in authentic surroundings. Cost p.p. €16.87

SL 78

 

 

Jan 202017
 
RESTAURANTE TAVINO,              CALPE      965832667

 ★★★★☆ 

Paradise for wine loversDSC01619

Tavino is located in Calle Blasco Ibanez, one of the streets running off Gabriel Miró in central Calpe. The street is full of restaurants but Tavino is noteworthy for its small al fresco area outside complete with a sign declaring  “A paradise for real wine lovers”.

Inside the restaurant the décor is classic but at the same time modern and attractive. On a cold, wet January day the warm muted ambience was welcoming and inviting.

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At the bar area Tavino boasts a state of the art dispensing unit offering a wide selection of wines by the glass in perfect condition. At the rear of the restaurant is a bodega/wine shop with a limited range of quality wines.

 

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The menu is extensive and although there is no advertised menu del día, there is one available on request at a reasonable €12.50 for three courses, excluding drinks and one of our group opted for this.  DSC01627

For the rest of us we selected deep fried camembert and calamares á la romana for starters and salads, schnitzel and pork cheeks for main course.

Our host did not scrimp on the wines, selecting a Rueda Verdejo called Rey Santo (€15) and a Rioja Crianza called Jaldum (€16.80).  We completed our meal with a Ribero del Duero called Silvanos which cost €4.10 per glass.

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A very enjoyable lunch with excellent wines in comfortable surroundings, costing just under €33 p.p.

JS 77

Jan 062017
 
VICTORIA RESTAURANT & TAVERN,   PARCENT         966405398

 ★★★★☆ 

Planet rebrandeddsc01595

When we last visited this restaurant in April 2015 it was called The Planet and had recently been taken over by a British couple who had very successfully operated the Paraiso restaurant further up the Coll de Rates road. At that time Paraiso was rated the number one restaurant in Parcent by TripAdvisor.

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Victoria operates as a restaurant and pub and we decided to have our lunch in the pub area as it was more lively and warm on a cold January day.

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The extensive menu del día now costs just €12.50 and offers a choice of five starters, main courses and desserts as well as a half bottle of wine. There was a more extensive menu priced at €18 and that was what most of us chose from. Before our starters were presented we were served a delicious Stilton cheese and brocolli soup on the house.

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We selected Thai fishcakes, deep fried Brie with cherries, stuffed mussels, hot chicken and bacon salad and Italian style stuffed mushrooms. The presentation was particularly impressive. Our host decided to trade up from the house white for a Chardonnay ( €8.50).

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Our main course selections included fish and chips, duck breast with berry sauce, and chicken wellington. The red wine selected was Pata Negra from Peñades (€8).

Desserts included apple crumble, chocolate melt with raspberries, flycatcher ice cream cocktail and a creative lemon chiffon with a raspberry stiletto. All creatively presented.dsc01611

Certainly the cuisine at Victoria is every bit as good as it was when our hosts operated Paraiso and together with coffees and brandies our enjoyable lunch cost €24.38 p.p.
SL 75

Dec 022016
 
BASE CAMP,          CALPE     965831833

 ★★★★☆ 

Top Indian cuisine in Base Campdsc01571

Base Camp is a well established Indian/Nepali restaurant located at km 1 on the Calpe to Moraira road. It is easy to locate being next to the Bed Centre and a few doors away from the landmark bar called “Grizzly´s”. There is plenty of parking in front of the restaurant.

The outside has the appearance of a normal Indian restaurant with a small terrace for al fresco dining. Inside the restaurant is decorated with ethnic fabrics and impressive murals.dsc01577

The à la carte and takeaway menus are extensive and there are three menu del día options priced at €9.99, €16.99 and €26.99 for two people sharing. When we visited Base Camp it was a rather miserable winter´s day and we were the only customers; no doubt business would be brisk in the evening. Regardless, the atmosphere was warm and friendly although we did have to request the background ethnic music to be reduced in volume.dsc01574

We decided to select the €26.99 menu for two and thoroughly enjoyed savouring the starters of kebab sheek, chicken tikka, vegetable pakura and samosa. These were followed up by main courses of two varieties of chicken and two lamb curries accompanied by potato side dishes, naan bread and deliciously cooked rice. There was a choice of mixed ice cream for dessert or coffee.

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To complete the authentic Indian experience were large bottles of Cobra beer (€5.50) and some of us opted for a perfectly acceptable Marques de Teran Rioja (€13.50).

Service was efficient and attentive without being obtrusive and the cost p.p. for this very enjoyable Indian lunch was €26.49.

JS 78

Nov 182016
 
BROU,       PEDREGUER      965761173

 ★★★★☆ 

A hidden gemdsc01542

After aperitifs in the Musical Bar (owned by the local band in Pedreguer), we made a stroll to Brau which is located on Carrer Cova Santa 2. The restaurant serves a menu del día at lunchtime and tapas in the evening.

The price of the menu is determined by the main course selected and ranges from €16 to €19, not including drinks.dsc01543

We started with two tapas –ensalada de roast beef with a tartar sauce and sardines with aubergine on a crepe base. Both delicious.

For main course we all selected meat dishes although a cod option was available. The Rabo de Toro was cooked to a turn and as good as we have tasted. The entrecote was also highly appreciated and plentiful.

The wines selected by our host were a white Muga 2015 (€16) and Bobal en Calma (€14) for our red.

For dessert the group split between Turron with crème brulée sauce and a mix of chocolate “goodies”. A worthy culmination to an excellent meal.

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Our thanks to our attentive hostess Leo for whom nothing was too much trouble. Brou has all the attributes to be sustainable success, but you need to find it! It is well worth the effort.

RH 79