We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Level Contributor
5 posts
36 reviews
Save Topic
Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain


We have been travelling to Nerja for over 30 years and at least once each visit we go to Pepe Rico Restaurant. My son had proposed to his girlfriend that day in Frigiliana so the entire family and partners were going out to celebrate. Our waiter came to the table and I explained I am coeliac and he all but raised his eyes to heaven and mumbled under his breath before walking off! You could see that he wasn’t happy that a table of 8 had arrived at 9:30 and he wanted an early night.

We ordered an assortment of food and the starters arrived and were delicious. The main courses arrived and this is where it all went wrong, they were a disaster!! Clearly presentation is not key in this restaurant, it looked like a child had just thrown the food on a plate. From the eight at the table 5 went back. The chicken with green peppercorn sauce was awful, dry and tasteless. One son had a beef stroganoff which tasted appalling and looked like something that had been sitting all day in a canteen. Another son ordered steak fillet; medium and it came blue. He called the waiter and explained his problem and they took it away and it returned very well done and threw it at him. Two of the girls had ordered sole pan-fried with king prawns and it came to the table looking like a brown congealed mess.

I never return food but when things are that bad you have to speak up, especially with it being one of the most expensive restaurants in Nerja.

The head waiter only speaks a small bit of English we used one of the other waitresses (who was extremely helpful throughout the whole night) to interpret our complaint. When we explained that we were not happy with the food his reply was that no one else had complained. We pointed out that we were not concerned about that fact and wanted our complaint dealt with; he continued to argue venomously about the fact that nobody else was having a problem but left with the uneaten food. He was extremely rude and verbally abusive and we asked for the manager but were told that she had already left for the evening.

Now this is where its gets like something out of Faulty towers, the bill arrived and we said that we thought we should not have to pay for the uneaten food. He grabbed the bill from my sons hand and started to bang it against his head, screamed at him with venom in Spanish and left. He returned with 2 plates no longer on the bill, One of my sons approached him at the cash area to try sort the bill out and not cause a further scene. He again informed him that this was unacceptable and the waiter ran at him trying to hit him. He had to be restrained by the two waitresses. He became more abusive and threatened to call the police. We once again asked for the manager and he left, my husband followed to see if he was making an effort to contact her and found that he was locking the door of the restaurant. Once he saw my husband he again ran for him and was held back by the waitresses. He challenged him and he pushed my husband back and he came back to the table and we then said that we were going to call the police. The manager arrived during all of this and my son explained what had happened. The waitress had tried to hold the waiter back and appease the situation to no avail; I explained that despite the madness that had gone on we were willing to pay for our food and did not want anything for nothing. I explained that I and the other women were terrified by his behaviour which was totally off the wall. When we said to the manager that we had been coming to her restaurant for 30 years would be putting this up on tripadvisor she lost the plot, started screaming us all saying that she” hoped that bad things happened to us all ” and stormed off.

The end product was we paid for what we had eaten and left. NEVER to return again. They totally ruined, what should have been, a lovely evening for my son and his fiancée and the rest of our family. I really, really hope that people read this and realise it’s not a scene out of a Monty Python skit and that the manager realises that thanks to tools like tripadvisor everybody is a critic and things like this will be heard about.

Level Contributor
64 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Blimey! I would have paid good money for a ring side seat!

Seriously though that sounds really bad and their attitude is appalling. I was only in Nerja for 2 weeks and did not come across this restaurant but rest assure that if and when I return I will not darken its doorstep from what you say.

I know its tough buts its the only way IMO to vote with your feet, restaurants as well as other establishments need to learn that customers expect certain standards and curtousy, its not much to ask.

If they cannot show this basic respect for their paying customers then they do not deserve to be in business.

I do not know where this restaurant is can you enlighten me?

Lake Vinuela...
Level Contributor
9,535 posts
18 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

On Calle Cristo - also known as Post Ofice Street.

We regularly visit Pepe Rico and have always had good food although service can be slightly surly. After this report we will be reluctant torisk returning.

The only thing - minor - I could say in the restaurants favour is that we always advise larger parties or anyone with dietary special needs, to book and inform staff of this in advance. Not that this excuses the behaviour one iota.

I wish your Son and his Fiancée every happiness in the future.

Edited: 7:04 am, September 22, 2010
Lake Vinuela...
Level Contributor
9,535 posts
18 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

By the way Carole, did you ask to complete the Complaints Book as this will show a permanent record of your experience?

Blackpool, United...
Level Contributor
1,600 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

I was going to suggest this too . Its called the "Libro de Reclamaciones".

It is obligatory in all establishments and has to be on display. It is taken very seriously and complaints are acted upon in no uncertain manner.

(eg. My friend wanted to complain about a Hostal he stayed in. He was told that they could not find the complaints book.We reported this down at the relevant office (opp the Tourist office) within minutes two Guardia Civil were roaring up the road on motor bikes!!! I think they found it very soon after that!)

The whole experience sounds horrific, Like you say ,you could have written a Fawlty Towers series from it!

Hope your son and fiancee were´nt too traumatised ! Mind you,they could dine out for years on that story!! lol :-)

Destination Expert
for Belgrade
Level Contributor
15,158 posts
1 review
Save Reply
5. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Sad to hear this, It's a place I never been to in all my years in Nerja and i don't know why.

One thing I'd ask, was it any of the same staff as you've seen before in the 30-years? Seems very odd to go from sublime to ridiculous.

I any event, the thing that shouts at me in your description is the waiter banging your sons head and being agressiv. In any such situation you should have called the police immediately and made a complaint. Still not too late, you can say stress and shock stopped you reporting it and you were scared.

Never, NEVER let a restaurant treat you this way, I'd insist on the waiter being charged as if he can do it to you he'll do it again and such nutters tend to get worse and more aggresive the more they get away with it.

Please do follow this up to the authorities.


Antrim, United...
Level Contributor
448 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Terrible experience on such a memorable day. We planned to visit this place next time but would now not consider it. There are plenty of other places in Nerja that actually enjoy serving customers with great food and great service.

Torre del Mar, Spain
Level Contributor
3,037 posts
37 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Click on "Write a Review" at the top of the page and then on restaurant and you can find that restaurant there. Then copy and paste (right clicks) your post onto the blank area for the review as a warning to others in the future.

Liverpool, United...
Level Contributor
615 posts
14 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

I loved when you said you were going to post the debacle on Tripadvisor, and the manager went mad.

Shows the power of Tripadvisor....

Level Contributor
168 posts
106 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Wow, that was terrible. I have been there once and whilst it was early in the night with okay food, we did find the staff unfriendly.

I was not very keen on the back outside area which was covered in a trellis and looking out onto what seemed like the back of an apt complex. They know how to charge though... won't be seeing me again!!

cordoba, spain
Level Contributor
3,154 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Thank you for the advice. Sorry for your experience. Amazed for the knowledge that those beasts had about Tripadvisor. Definitely, a place TO AVOID.