My family and I are regular visitors to Nerja but had never visited La Joya, we were looking or somewhere new to try and thought we would give this place a try.
First impressions were good, greeted by a very friendly staff member but a little indecisivie about which table we should be allocated. We were seated and quickly offered drinks and given details of the specials.
The restaurant is small with a couple of tables outside. There is art work on display in the restaurant and it had a very nice atmosphere.
Drinks arrived fairly quickly and our order was taken (this was where our issues started!) The items in red on the menu take longer to cook than the other items. My husband ordered the tiger prawn tempura only to be told that this would take longer, he asked how much longer and was told that no one else had ordered any of the items that take longer to cook. He asked for a rough idea of how long and was told well I could ask the chef, at that point he changed his order to the beef burger (which I had also ordered). Then it was suggested that one of us had the chicken burger and shared or had the deluxe burger. We did feel like we weren't allowed to order what we wanted. We also ordered some garlic bread and some olives to have while we watied on our main.
We waited around 30 minutes for the garlic bread and olives to arrive, the very friendly staff member admitted that they had forgotten about it. The garlic bread was warm and very tasty, not bland like some can be.
We then waited around another 30 minutes for our main courses. The main courses are served on their own, fries, rice potates etc have to be ordered as side dishes. The hand cut fries were lovely, real proper ones and not just frozen ones thrown in a deep fryer. The beef burgers are absolutely huge, served in a bun with salad, ketchup and cheese if required. The burgers are very tasty, the best that we have had for quite some time, I couldn't finish mine.
We also noticed that the two ladies at the table next to us also had a lengthy wait for their food.
We were offered dessert and coffee but declined and got the bill. Our bill was 28 Euros which we feel is very reasonable or the food and drinks that we had. A few people have commented to say that they felt the prices were too high, I would not agree with that. I feel the prices are fair for the food served.
We really enjoyed our food and liked the restaurant however the very slow service did put us off. We were in the restaurant for almost 2 hours, when we had a main course and bread is a bit lengthy.
The two staff serving in the restaurant were both very friendly and there seemed to be only 2 staff in the kitchen (in the summer there were 3) this is what is causing issues. A restaurant does not want to be over run with staff in quieter months but on a busy Saturday night an extra pair of hands would certainly help.
The food is excellent, service is friendly but slow, which is my main criticism. If the service had been quicker a higher overall score would have been given.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.