The Tastes of Southern Spain

August 8, 2017

I love to travel, and while the people, sights and sounds of a place are enchanting, for me it’s all about the food. La Costa de la Luz did not disappoint, at least most of the time.

I’m a contributor on Trip Adviser, and I like to give honest reviews of a place. But taste is very subjective, and what might warrant two stars from one reviewer may get five from another. Sometimes the text is telling, as the rating might be based on bad service rather than bad food, and norms in other countries might drive us crazy. Having to ask for the check in Mexico seemed odd to me until it was explained that it would be considered rude to rush a patron by dropping the check at the table before it was requested. Live and learn. So we had both good and great experiences at some of the Trip Adviser highly rated restaurants in Spain. “Good” meaning half of our food was excellent but there was a dish or two that was mediocre or meat that was tough. One such place was La Brena, which rated four Trip Adviser stars and was an expensive restaurant inside the hotel of the same name. Lovely setting with a view of the Atlantic, al fresco dining, etc., but our server spoke no English, and even with translation by Pablo, Teresa’s Spanish dictionary, and the hotel manager we had issues. I’d think in the hospitality world a martini would be universally recognized. I even asked for specific vodkas to see if that would help. So my vodka martini, up, with olives came out looking like this:





















It tasted like a Manhattan, possibly made with vodka. I drank it because it was WAY too much work to try again, short of going behind the bar and doing it myself. Which I did consider. My meal was excellent, a pork dish heavily charred on the outside and perfectly cooked on the inside, but the rest of the table was not as happy, having to either send something back or wishing that they had sent something back. For a highly rated restaurant that came recommended it was a bit of a surprise.





















































































The rest of our dining experiences were better and even great. On our first night we dined at El Alferez, a restaurant on the beach in El Palmar. We watched the setting sun as we dined on tuna tartare, multiple fish dishes and gorgeous desserts.













































































































In Los Canos de Meca we walked to La Laja restaurant from our inn in the pine forest, and we liked it so much we returned a second time later in the week. Pablo raved about the partridge dish he ordered, and the local cheese platter appetizer was educational as well as delicious.


































































































Castillejos was another place near enough to access on foot, and their upstairs bar and bartender proved far superior to La Brena in the martini department. He also nailed a rum punch for Pablo.































Our meal was interesting and tasty, though not the best of the week, but the view from the upstairs bar and the prowess of the bartender were outstanding.


































































My favorite meal? There were two; the night in Vejer at Trafalgar that I described in an earlier post, and the tapas at El Faro in Cadiz, which I’ll enlighten you about in my next post about our trip to that great city.

Hasta Pronto,




{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Cheryl August 8, 2017 at 9:36 am

Swooning… more please.


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