I was reading on Tripadvisor someone wanted advice on places to eat in El Roque and I must admit I thought ‘fat chance’. I was, however expecting Steph who lives there, to come and cut my dogs hair that day, so it was an ideal opportunity to check if there was anywhere suitable. As it happened, she enthused over a place called El Rincon de Patri. Now, I don´t like recommending places unless I have firsthand knowledge so we decided to take our friend Julie, who was staying for a long weekend, on Saturday night to see if Steph was right.
From the main TF28 El Rincon is easy to find they have an illuminated sign and are the first place you arrive at in the village. There is a large car park across the road and as you enter, there is a nice patio area with fountain, fairy lights and a little bar that serves wines from Vilaflor and Tacaronte at €0.90 a glass – first impressions, excellent!
The new owners have only been there 6 or 8 weeks and speak no English, although with smiles and nods we were made to feel welcome. The waitress, who lives in Las Chafiras has a little English so we had no problems asking if we could have a look around before choosing a table.
Going to El Rincon is not like visiting a restaurant, more like going for a meal at a friend’s home. It consists of several varying sized rooms, where you can either join other diners, or reserve for your own party of friends.
There is household paraphernalia dotted around. Birds in cages in the corner, old-fashioned gramophones by the door, somebody’s works of art on the walls and shelves stuffed with pots and tiny trinkets that little ones have brought back from holidays abroad.
I like to have a look at what our American friends call the ‘comfort station’ before I am totally happy with eating somewhere new and this is in an outside area close to a childrens play park – I can confirm it was spotless so no problems with cleanliness. It was relatively early in the evening and I would not have done this if the place was packed, but being a nosy parker I also asked if I could see the kitchen. The chef and his helper were more than happy, in fact I think the old lady was showing off a bit as she smuggly posed to have her photo taken.
We ordered our meal and while we waited, were brought a basket of bread, crackers, mojo, alioli and a cheese spread. Our starters of black pudding, garlic prawns, and garlic mushrooms followed, plain, simple, plentiful and good.
I had ordered the sirloin entrecote which with trimmings was €8.50 and when I saw the size of it thought it would probably be suitable for shoes, however it was tender and cooked to perfection, as was the huge piece of pork loin steak. The chips were homemade and the only other accompaniement was a cooked tomato.
When we had finished eating there was just a little meat left on each plate which the dogs enjoyed when we got home that evening.
Puddings next, girlfriend and I had no room but needless to say OH can always manage something sweet so he ordered the blackberry cheesecake – I ordered two extra spoons so we could try it! Good, but a little too sweet for me.
We had had a couple of soft drinks each, two bottles of water, two G&Ts , two barraquitos and a cafe con leche so when the bill arrived it was a very reasonable €51.50 we were also offered a choice of copita, I chose Baileys, friend had peach schnapps and OH had a Baileys as he doesn´t drink so I was having his!
On our way to the car we passed the entrance to a cave where the proprietors also serve meals, it was pretty with different coloured lights shining on the walls. For those who want to find somewhere traditional, authentic and IMO cheap, coupled with pleasant staff you would have to go a long way to find better than El Rincon, I do hope word spreads and this little restaurant is here to stay for a long time.