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Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

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35 reviews
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Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain


We have been travelling to Nerja for over 30 years and at least once each visit we go to Pepe Rico Restaurant. My son had proposed to his girlfriend that day in Frigiliana so the entire family and partners were going out to celebrate. Our waiter came to the table and I explained I am coeliac and he all but raised his eyes to heaven and mumbled under his breath before walking off! You could see that he wasn’t happy that a table of 8 had arrived at 9:30 and he wanted an early night.

We ordered an assortment of food and the starters arrived and were delicious. The main courses arrived and this is where it all went wrong, they were a disaster!! Clearly presentation is not key in this restaurant, it looked like a child had just thrown the food on a plate. From the eight at the table 5 went back. The chicken with green peppercorn sauce was awful, dry and tasteless. One son had a beef stroganoff which tasted appalling and looked like something that had been sitting all day in a canteen. Another son ordered steak fillet; medium and it came blue. He called the waiter and explained his problem and they took it away and it returned very well done and threw it at him. Two of the girls had ordered sole pan-fried with king prawns and it came to the table looking like a brown congealed mess.

I never return food but when things are that bad you have to speak up, especially with it being one of the most expensive restaurants in Nerja.

The head waiter only speaks a small bit of English we used one of the other waitresses (who was extremely helpful throughout the whole night) to interpret our complaint. When we explained that we were not happy with the food his reply was that no one else had complained. We pointed out that we were not concerned about that fact and wanted our complaint dealt with; he continued to argue venomously about the fact that nobody else was having a problem but left with the uneaten food. He was extremely rude and verbally abusive and we asked for the manager but were told that she had already left for the evening.

Now this is where its gets like something out of Faulty towers, the bill arrived and we said that we thought we should not have to pay for the uneaten food. He grabbed the bill from my sons hand and started to bang it against his head, screamed at him with venom in Spanish and left. He returned with 2 plates no longer on the bill, One of my sons approached him at the cash area to try sort the bill out and not cause a further scene. He again informed him that this was unacceptable and the waiter ran at him trying to hit him. He had to be restrained by the two waitresses. He became more abusive and threatened to call the police. We once again asked for the manager and he left, my husband followed to see if he was making an effort to contact her and found that he was locking the door of the restaurant. Once he saw my husband he again ran for him and was held back by the waitresses. He challenged him and he pushed my husband back and he came back to the table and we then said that we were going to call the police. The manager arrived during all of this and my son explained what had happened. The waitress had tried to hold the waiter back and appease the situation to no avail; I explained that despite the madness that had gone on we were willing to pay for our food and did not want anything for nothing. I explained that I and the other women were terrified by his behaviour which was totally off the wall. When we said to the manager that we had been coming to her restaurant for 30 years would be putting this up on tripadvisor she lost the plot, started screaming us all saying that she” hoped that bad things happened to us all ” and stormed off.

The end product was we paid for what we had eaten and left. NEVER to return again. They totally ruined, what should have been, a lovely evening for my son and his fiancée and the rest of our family. I really, really hope that people read this and realise it’s not a scene out of a Monty Python skit and that the manager realises that thanks to tools like tripadvisor everybody is a critic and things like this will be heard about.

Worthing, United...
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2,537 posts
49 reviews
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51. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

In our 25 years of going to Nerja we've been to Pepe Ricos only once, many, many years ago and that was at the invitation of a friend who was celebrating her birthday. The food was very average, nothing to make us go back. No doubt the staff, if not, the owners are all different now, but once we eat at an average restaurant it never gets a second try.....too many other good ones.

Lake Vinuela...
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9,535 posts
18 reviews
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52. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

We have always enjoyed our meals at Pepe Rico but have admittedly only ever had the Menu del dia.

We have found staff surly at times but like the rear patio for a relaxing lunch with friends.

Hastings, United...
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171 posts
29 reviews
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53. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Like casaianda ,I've always enjoyed the menu del dia at Pepe Rico.

What would be really be useful would be comments from the restaurant itself.

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54. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain


Yes We are new posters and I only decided to join in to TA about 3 weeks ago just before all this blew up. TA has given us some really good advice

over the last few years all of it much appreciated.

We have visited Nerja many times over the last 10 years and for the first 5 or so looked at Pepe Ricos from outside but moved on for some reason.

However over the last 5 years or so it has become a firm favourite for an

evening of well cooked & presented international food. We have alwayys found the regular staff polite and obliging and usually enjoy our meals on

the rear courtyard in a very tranquil atmosphere.

We were in Nerja first 2 weeks of September and dined at Pepe Rico`s on 3 occasions all of which were perfect.

The whole saga puzzles me ?

Una Mas

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55. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

I live in Nerja and I work like waiter in another restaurant in Nerja.

I know Pepe Rico restaurant and I have to say that is one of the best restaurant in Nerja.

And the waiter that you are talking about is one of the best waiters that is working in Nerja, he is working in Pepe Rico since 1978 more or less, anda like person hes is better than waiter. (All that in talking about you can confirm speaking with the people livng in Nerja).

I have to say like waiter and like person:

Enjoy and will enjoy with you.


Wilmslow, United...
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887 posts
6 reviews
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56. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

And the PR machine trundles on, for how much longer?

Strange how all the frst time posters have homed in on just one review/complaint?

Edited: 02 October 2010, 11:43
Lake Vinuela...
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9,535 posts
18 reviews
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57. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

How many more first posters should we expect?

Blackpool, United...
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11 reviews
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58. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

Over to you Pepe Rico! I cannot understand why you are not taking this opportunity to have your say on this ? I don´t mean in a round-about -way (customers,lawyers and waiters.....) but officially? I know that if it were my business ,and that I thought I was in the right ,I would have been on here days ago.

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59. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

There is a first time for everything

OK I have not made 8,774 posts yet but you have to start somewhere :-)



Gloucester, United...
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129 posts
43 reviews
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60. Re: Pepe Rico, Nerja, Spain

We were in Nerja last week, and went to a few restaurants that we took recommends from off this site.

Pepe Rico we decided to give a miss due to the post in this forum,the post at the time i read it only had a few responses long. We did wonder by during the week and it was empty (it was early evening so may have got busier later).

The original post was extremely long and detailed and would have thought that the restaurant would have responded to put their point of view forward, there are always two sides to every story or perhaps they have contacted the poster direct???

There are so many good restaurants in Nerja why take a risk. The point that Pepe Rico seem to be missing by avoiding their right to reply. Whatever the circumstances there is no excuse for poor customer service, in the hospitality industry that is what puts you above your competition, people often forget the meal but rarely forget the service.

Question is who would now eat at Pepe Rico?

It is a great shame if some of the 'first time' posters are not quite what they seem, ( i know this is starting to happen due to recent media reports) that is not what this site was set up for and will work towards devaluing reviews as you will never be able to trust what you read, Perhaps TA should do more to qualify membership of this site before trying to find as trying to find anything unbiased will be like trying to find an honest politician! - rant over now and off my soap box.

It will be interesting to see if any comments are posted by the restaurant.

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