This tapas bar opened in 1994, so given the mayfly-like longevity of many restaurants it has clearly been doing something right for 22 years. The ground floor dining room is supplemented by a basement area and serves conventional tapas dishes.
The wine list had plenty of Spanish choices but omitted the vintages, something that I find quite irritating, basically assuming that customers are clueless about wine but saving the owners from reprinting the list when the years of the wines actually change. Lealtanza Crianza was £28.50 for a bottle that will set you back about £11 in the high street, Coma Vella from Priorat was £59.95 compared to its retail price of £24, and Clos Fonta from the same area was £123.50 for a wine that will set you back perhaps £60 in a shop, but varies widely in price by vintage, so who knows whether this mystery vintage is fairly priced or not?
We tried a variety of dishes. Chicken croquettas were quite good, with a crisp batter and meat that was not dried out (12/20). Prawns in garlic were cooked in their shells and served in a little iron wok – the shellfish were carefully cooked and had reasonable flavour, enhanced by the garlic sauce (13/20). Chicken with rice was fine, the rice having good texture, the chicken not having a lot of flavour but being properly cooked (12/20).
Deep fried tilapia did not have much flavour though the batter was clean tasting (11/20). Mushrooms in garlic were just button mushrooms that were fried, pleasant but hardly thrilling (11/20). A pair of meatballs had nicely seasoned meat and had reasonably good flavour (12/20). Roast potatoes in onion, garlic and parsley were fine, the potatoes cooked quite well (12/20).
The bill for two at lunch with still water to drink came to £25 a head. If you shared a bottle of wine then a typical cost per head would be around £55. Service was fine. The meal today was not more than pleasant, though this is a perfectly serviceable restaurant and a useful bolthole these days if you are looking for a relatively affordable meal in increasingly unaffordable Mayfair.