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“Met the Expectations of a Three Star Michelin Restaurant But It's Too Commercialized.”
Review of Arzak

Arzak
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $158 - $180
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, Late Night, Breakfast, Dinner, Reservations
Reviewed September 24, 2018

We had dinner a week ago at Arzak with another couple. We were warmly greeted and taken to our table on the 2nd level/floor. They took note of my food allergies(no crustaceans) and since the menu was a la carte were flexible enough about it. Both female and male servers were very attentive and sometimes felt they stumbled with each other which was comic. All of us had two Amuse Bouche. For appetizers I had the Pescado del Dia(Chicharro) con Melon Ahumado which was delicious, and my wife had the Carabineros con Krill. Followed with Lubina en Su Plenitud, Lomo de Merluza en Salsa Verde con almejas(excellent), then some Cordero Engranado, Pichon Simbolico. Our dessert was like a dream, Trufon de Chocolate y Escombros de Cacao.We ordered our wines which paired very well with food. Why the 4 stars?
Besides the restaurant being packed, I thought that the service could have been slightly better, as there was some confusion of the plates being served, the stumbling of the servers more than one time, didn't see the sommelier until the end of our meal. The male server was a bit hesitant when we ordered the wines. Arzak has all the merits of the 3 star Michelin restaurant but perhaps has been too commercialized and has lost some of its personal touch.

Date of visit: September 2018
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank johnnapoli54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 24, 2018 via mobile

Perfection, or as close to it as my wife and I have yet experienced. That’s how we’d describe our meal at this shrine to refined Basque cooking. Normally a visit to Arzak requires applying for a reservation month’s in advance. We were incredibly fortunate to snag a same-day cancelation by calling first thing in the morning. From the moment we arrived we were greeted with grace, professionalism and friendliness — three traits that we experienced throughout our meal.

Though we may have had the worst table in the restaurant — there are really no bad tables — we never felt we were missing out on any of the sights and smells of the food, as it was effortlessly carried on large serving trays from kitchen to table.

And we certainly didn’t get second rate service. Saying we weren’t hungry enough to eat our way through two separate pre-fixe meals, our waiter helped create a bespoke sampling of half portions of highlights from the menu that ultimately cost us less than a single pre-fixe came to. And the wine steward spent much time helping us select a very affordable bottle of Rioja. (I give high points to any wine steward that “down sells” to a wine that’s less expensive than the price point you specify rather than “up selling” you.)

And, oh what food it was, all fished, bred or farmed in the region. We started with a host of tasty amuse gueule. They were followed by a simply prepared dish of incredibly fresh vegetables. Then it was on to small plates of delectable lobster wITG leek and plantain, hake with garbanzos, dark monkfish, a veal dish and one with pigeon. To finish the meal, sort of, we had one fruit dessert and one chocolate, neither of which I could adequately describe. This in turn was followed by a suite of mignardises to accompany our espressos, just in case we weren’t full enough.

AND THIS WAS AN ABBREVIATED MEAL.

All of the dishes were beautifully composed and none of them, regardless how sophisticated they may have been, was overly fussy. The essence and the quality of the ingredients were always front and center.

In short, we’d go back.

Date of visit: September 2018
Thank N4908VRmartinm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2018 via mobile

Decided to spend a special birthday with family and friends and it was just beautiful. The food was devine, the staff are gorgeous and the setting was relaxed but chic. A special birthday cake was also presented which was just so lovely. A wonderful day in a very special place. Thank you

Date of visit: August 2018
Thank aussieale
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2018

We’ve eaten at Arzak before and had a wonderful experience. So trying this restaurant a second time was a little different. We had high expectations. They weren’t exceeded but they were met. The service was wonderful. The Sommelier made a great recommendation. And then there was the food. We had the tasting menu and were not disappointed. Each course was wonderful but the prawn course was superb.

Arzak is more than a great restaurant. It’s a treasure. Reservations are a must.

Date of visit: September 2018
Thank Shannydog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 22, 2018 via mobile

Had dinner on a Sat evening. Having just eaten at Mugaritz, another great restaurant in the area, we were naturally drawn to compare the two. Fundamentally they are quite different in their approaches, with Mugaritz offering new experiences and more experimental with the food while Arzak is more traditional. Meal at Mugaritz took 4.5 hours while We finished our dinner at Arzak in 3. Arzak was very flexible in allowing us to mix set menu for one guest and a la carte for the other. Also great range in wine choices, with single classes starting as low as 7 euros. Price performance is definitely one of the top among Michelin restaurants we had tried around the world. Mugaritz offers a non alcoholic beverage pairing which included many unusual but very surprises. Arzak did not offer wine pairing. Service at Arzak was professional and efficient but did not make us feel connected to the staff. Also less private when dining at Arzak compared to Mugaritz. Food wise the only disappointment at Arzak was the lobster which I wish they would cold poach it. Mugaritz had many dishes superior to Arzak but also had a couple of great misses - the apple dessert was so tart we could not even eat half of it.

Date of visit: September 2018
2  Thank Philip Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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