Yesterday, after a morning of shopping in El Corte Ingles and Puerto Banus, my friends and I were starving and stopped for a quick lunch at La Taberna del Pintxo, the pintxos (Basque tapas on a skewer) place right across the street by the English bookstore. There are several other branches of this casual restaurant in Marbella, Fuengirola and La Linea. I have been to this place many times before and always had a good meal. The best part is that the service is quick and the cold pintxos are passed around and ready, while hot pintxos are made to order. There are also several cazuelas (stews or traditional cooked dishes) listed on the menu but all in all, you can be in and out of there in half an hour if you’re in a rush. With kids in tow it’s practical as they can eat as soon as they sit down and are entertained with the fac that they can choose what they would like to eat from the many platters being passed around.
We arrived at the nearly empty restaurant at 3:00 p.m. and chose an outdoor table and quickly ordered several hot pintxos – chistorra (small Chorizo-type sausages from Navarra), lomo con ali-oli (pork tenderloin with garlic mayonnaise), tortillitas de camaron (crispy pancakes of tiny shrimp), croquetas de pollo (chicken croquettes), carne mechada con queso (ground beef with cheese), morcilla (blood sausage with rice from Burgos) and a racion (large portion or plateful) of crispy deeep-fried chipirones (baby squid) along with a tinto de verano (a bit of red wine topped up with Casera, the Spanish lemon-flavoured fizzy water) and a beer for the two sisters and a soft drink for teetotaler me on my last four weeks of pregnancy. The food came quickly and was delicious ad perfect for a light lunch before heading off for some retail therapy. All in all we spent 50 euros for our lunch including drinks which is pretty reasonable in overpriced Puerto Banus.