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“A little Spanish cracker” 4 of 5 stars
Review of El Rincon de Rafa

El Rincon de Rafa
off St Johns Street, 244 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4BQ, England
+44 (0)161 839 8819
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Ranked #191 of 1,718 Restaurants in Manchester
Price range: $0 - $59
Cuisines: Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Preston, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“A little Spanish cracker”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2013

Not the easiest place to find, but we're glad we did. It was a Saturday afternoon and it was really busy, with couples, families and a couple of larger parties. The menu was extensive and had a lot of specials to choose from. Service was pretty quick, although due to the tapas style of service, the food did not arrive all together (just as well as it wouldn't have all fit on the table!). The food was delicious and we recommend you have some bread so you can dip it into all the sauces that you won't want to leave.
Best of all is the atmosphere. A constant buzz. Whether you're after a romantic meal, a larger party or just want to sit at the bar, you can't not enjoy it here.

  • Visited October 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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658 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Manchester, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Celebration Time”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2013

We are two Senior couples & had the pleasure of celebrating our joint wedding anniversaries on the last Saturday of September at El Rincon. The atmosphere in the restaurant was loud & vibrant with patrons of all age groups having a good time. Our service was good and the staff very pleasant. You have to appreciate the tapas style of service with your dishes arriving at any time and in no particular sequence. Not overpriced for a City Centre restaurant El Rincon can be recommended for a good night out!

  • Visited September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Has always been hit and miss but now very much a miss”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2013

I have been going to El Rincon for more than 20 years and have to say I have had some disappointing meals however mostly the place was on form and when so the food more than made up for the previous disappointments.
However this time the whole experience was terrible: The food started arriving within minutes (we hadn't been served wine yet) and we had to ask several times for our bottle, the calamari (out first) had soggy batter and was rubbery and cold. The prawns were not de-veined (I can deal with that somewhat) and the fabada (a dish I have here previously as well as elsewhere) was so watery and devoid of flavour that I had to send that back (along with the calamari) this was was met with disdain and I was told that the fabada was fine and as it should be...
The worst bit though was that we had to ask for bread twice, on the second time the waiter reached over to the next table that had recently been vacated but not cleared and gave us the left over half basket of bread!

  • Visited September 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chesterfield, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Always Delivers”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2013

I've been here a number of times when in Manchester as it has always been one of my favourite restaurants. I think the popularity is affecting it nowadays though as our table wasn't ready when we got there on Saturday even though we had booked. I do think they are trying to get too many people in and maybe take a chance that people won't turn up on time etc. That being said I just love the food. I can't get enough of the filletos and the chicken croquettes and the rest of the tapas dishes aren't bad either.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Very overrated”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2013

If you like tapas find somewhere else. Some of the dishes were terrible and when the main dish arrived there was barely enough for four people let alone a party of eight. The service was good and the staff were tentative. Would I go back? absolutely not.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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