My friend and I were recommended Paco Jimenez as an excellent place to enjoy Spanish cuisine and ambience; we were advised to allow at least 2 hours to enjoy our meal and booked a time which allowed for a relaxed, unhurried dining experience before we went on to a flamenco evening which began at 10.30pm.
The setting is fabulous. Accessed through a traditional Moorish-influenced Andalucian courtyard and upstairs into a relatively small dining room with two tables on a balcony overlooking Orange Square. Staff were attentive, friendly and efficient, and helpfully advised on the evening starter special which was a giant prawn and fish gratin served in a scallop shell. The wine list offered prices from 15 - 50 euros, and we settled on a mid-range 20 euro Sauvignon Marques de Riscal which was very pleasant. We also requested a bottle of still water. A complimentary pre-starter was brought to the table in a small cocktail glass comprising pasta, ground nuts, sesame seed and garlic flavouring together with 3 slices of garlic bread. The starter was beautifully presented, and included a tiny square of puff pastry with salmon caviar decoration. Following a reasonable length of time our main courses of entrecote steak and quail breast was served with a selection of beautifully presented vegetables including a large ramekin of hand cut potato chips. We chose not to have a dessert but observed other tables enjoying fabulous puddings. Instead we ordered coffee, and received a complimentary Spanish liqueur following coffee. Total bill was 100 euros, so not an inexpensive dinner, but a very pleasant experience indeed and one that we would recommend to others seeking an authentic, well-presented and beautifully cooked dinner in great surroundings.
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