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“Great food, gracious hostess” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Malbec - CLOSED

Malbec
South of Puerto Viejo on the Main Road, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
2750-0581
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Brisbane, Australia
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
“Great food, gracious hostess”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2013

I have been in the area for almost a month and really needed a good steak. I went based on the reviews here and was not disappointed!

The owner/hostess was very friendly and walked me through the menu. I had a lovely half bottle of Malbec which was perfect for the evening. I ordered the peppered steak(s) which came with TWO fillets and a side of au gratin potatoes and boiled carrots and green beans. I also started off with two empanadas (cheese and beef).

The cheese empanada, which I ate there was very good. The pastry was perfect and flaky. The cheese (which had some onion in it) oozed out nicely. I took the beef one home with me, but in hindsight should have eaten it there since it didn't heat up well. The meat tasted fine but the pastry suffered. There was also a nice loaf of bread with a herb/butter spread brought out which was also good.

The steak was wonderful and I could only eat one of the fillets, which suited me just fine. There wasn't really anything special about the carrots and green beans. I think improvements could be made there that would only entail a little more work per dish. I really thought I'd love the au gratin but I wasn't crazy about it. It was bland and dry...not like what I was expecting (a creamy cheese sauce) so I'm glad it came with the dish because I would have paid for it otherwise and probably been disappointed. I did take some of it home and put some cheese on it and salt/pepper which made it significantly better.

However, the empanadas, meat and wine were the real winners here. My bill came out to about $50 which is what I expected. The other appetizers seemed quite expensive and I really couldn't justify buying anything other than the empanadas (which I believe were about $3/ea). Considering I got another 1 1/2 meals out of the steak, I was happy and will return again when another craving hits.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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170 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    140
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    8
    0
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Vista, California
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Great food, great small intimate atmosphere”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2013

My husband and I went to Malbec on the suggestion of both the owners of the house we are staying at as well as random strangers in La Fortuna. The owners are a husband and wife team from Argentina. We started with the empanadas. I have never had one before I really did not think I would like it. It was delicious. It was so juicy and moist, straight out of the brick oven. The bread was served with a garlic cream cheese. Our salads came next. My husband had the salad with avocado and I had just the mixed salad. It was a nice variety of vegetables and it was fresh. The salad dressing was like a vinagraret. I ordered the rib eye medium and my husband the flank steak. We thought about ordering a baked potato but the owner told us it would be too much food. She was right. Both came with carrots, green beans and red potatoes. The food did come before we were finished with our salads. The owner apologized but said it was done and wanted it to be hot for us. Now, my steak was prepared medium. It was rarer than I would ever eat in the states. Since I am adventurous when I travel I did not send it back. It was delicious. It was so flavorful. You just need to remember that rib eye tends to have a lot of fat. My husbands flank steak was perfect the best he has ever had!! The vegetables were great too. Remember that some restaurants do not have salt and pepper out on the tables. When we asked for salt and pepper we we're told it had it on the salads already. They did bring it to us when we asked again. We Americans over salt everything lol. There was only one other couple and their well behaved little girl. They too raved about their meal. I would highly recommend this place. It only has 10 tables too. I would love to go back if ever in this area again!!

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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phoenix
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Delicious!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

Great location, owners are fantastic, peppered steak and scalloped potatoes were so good! Desert: banana flambe and caramel/chocolate crepes. Smooth argentinian malbec that was recommended by the owner went fabulously w/ the meal.
Must go there!

  • Visited April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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The Hague, The Netherlands
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Fantastic food!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2013 via mobile

We've found this restaurant actually on Tripadvisor as it is hard to find the restaurant yourself. Located 100 meters inlands from the main road from Puerto Viejo to Manzanillo, this was the surprise of our holiday. The meat is absolutely fantastic, the best we have eaten in many years. The owners are really friendly and open. Highly recommendable.

Visited April 2013
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Los Angles
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Great food, great owners”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

Best restaurant we ate at in Puerto Viejo area - albeit pricey since it was a high quality Argentinian BBQ (think lots of high quality meat). We were the only people there - and spent considerable time talking to the owners while eating and watching the downpour just a few feet away from our table (which was on a covered porch). We greatly enjoyed talking to the owners both about things we shared in common (e.g. they come from Argentina and we have relatives in Argentina) and about their perspectives on the Costa Rican culture.

Visited August 2012
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