One of the endlessly entertaining aspects of Trip Advisor is the forthright reviews of restaurants written by people who clearly have no idea of good food and are influenced too much by the ambiance, friend’s company, wine, funny waiter or whatever. How do I know all this?– 1 million air miles, travelled around the wold once in each direction, eaten in Sudan, Iran, Russia, Far East, Norway, Finland, N America, Singapore, Australia … I could go on. Whilst many of my work colleagues are discerning there are also many whose mouths move up and down but clearly they are not tasting anything and freely admit to “not being fussed” about fine dining. So having established my credentials as a know-it-all which you can believe or not as you please, what about this restaurant and why did we visit a second time given the less than average food.
The first thing to say is the reason that this restaurant gets such good reviews is that it has an excellent atmosphere. You walk in to a cosy two level restaurant in authentic Italian style. The second thing is that it has a Rioja Crianza of good value which comes in half bottles (10 Euros). We drink wine every night but, sorry, a bottle of wine between two for an evening is over indulgent but you have probably already concluded that I am a fuddy-duddy. In mitigation I would say that my wife drinks very little so that leaves three quarters of a bottle for me. Overall the restaurant is modestly priced.
I will be brief on the food; it doesn’t merit more. Mussels – tiny, chewy and in a sauce that tasted just like Heinz tomato soup with chili powder added (by the way, good Mussels are available in Tenerife – we had them elsewhere). Fettuccini with mushrooms – fresh pasta as advertised and the best I have tasted outside of Italy BUT too much Olive Oil and the Fettuccini Coeur de Filet just didn’t work. Marinated monkfish (why would you?) – chewy and a an unusual taste which my wife couldn’t identify but didn’t like. My wife couldn’t eat the onion soup which she described as too rich but I saw this in other restaurants and it seemed to be the same kind of thing so the jury is out on that. Why is it that outside of Italy nobody can use just enough olive oil to lightly coat the pasta and not drown it? You can always add more at the table.
It is tempting to say that we just ordered the wrong thing (so it’s our fault?) but with the restaurant named as it is maybe the steak is OK. I can almost read the next review from somebody saying I don’t know what I am talking about – but, as I say, that’s the beauty of Trip Advisor. Three stars for food, four plus for character so I think that makes four stars average.
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