This was a bit like the last supper, well it was almost Easter and it would be the last meal girlfriend and I would have until possibly the end of May or the beginning of June as she was flying off to see her new grandson in Zimbabwe.
We initially thought we would go to Valle San Lorenzo but there are not that many nice restaurants in the town that open on a lunchtime. Don´t get me wrong there are masses of lovely restaurants in Valle San Lorenzo but they are mainly open on an evening. So before we met I was struggling to think of somewhere to eat when she sent me an email. Do you fancy the sheep place?
Yeah fine, where and what is the sheep place You know as you drive through Guargacho there is the place with the hedge that has been trimmed like a sheep. Oh, yes next to the purple house.
In fact, I had heard good things about this place called El Cordero so when I called for her at 12.00 we were both looking forward to it. We turned up and the car park was full, we managed to slot along the road which is very busy but thought that being where we were we would not get blocked in and the gap in the trees would mean we could easily pull out when we were ready to leave. We walked up to the door and there was a queue of people, all Canarian chatting away. It does not open until 1.00 we were told so we fell in line. It must be good if they are all here waiting.
After waiting almost 15 minutes the door was opened by a member of staff who ushered us all inside to the most enormous room and we were asked if we wanted to sit inside or in the extension which is also a huge room. We opted for inside which was quite dark. It was packed with tables of all sizes and it was only when we were seated that we noticed the floor, which was volcanic gravel. So I imagine if you want to describe the ambiance, it would be ‘rustic’ (at the very least!)
We ordered our drinks; my usual Cola Lite and friend asked for wine, red came by the glass but white, which is what she drinks came in what looked like a ketchup bottle. I guessed that she wasn´t winking at me so presumed it tasted like vinegar and she quickly replaced it with a cola.
We didn´t have to wait long before the waiter came across to take our orders. We asked for the menu, I am the menu he said – Okaaay…. so he rattled off what was available and we asked him to go through it again but a bit slower. We ordered our starters Fried Cheese and Morcilla Dulce (Black Pudding) which I was surprised friend had never had before unlike me, if it is on the menu it is a must. For anyone who hasn´t tried it, it is stuffed with fruit and nuts and tastes nothing like the stuff you get in the UK.
As you can probably guess from the photos, we were a bit off the mark but I was sure he said queso frito and not queso fresco (fresh cheese), Ah well; it tasted good with the fresh bread, mojo sauce and alioli.
We then ordered our main and both opted for pork, I had the fillet and friend the chop. You order each item separate so our choice of vegetables was chips or chips, we asked for salad but it was ‘off’.
In all honesty, the main courses were disappointing. There was nothing wrong with them both, were nicely cooked, but I am always put off if the portions are so large I feel bloated before even taking a mouthful and these were enormous.
There was so much food that friend took home one enormous pork chop and I only ate the pork that was on the top, the large piece underneath was also taken home. This must be very common as they have bags especially for this that they hand out to all the tables.
We lingered over our meal and finally asked for the bill €27.00 not unreasonable, if you consider the amount of meat we were taking away with us. In fact, my dogs had a treat for the following two days as it was mixed with their dinner so they were very impressed. I on the other hand was disappointed. I really wanted to like Carnes a la Brasa and I did like it but not to the extent I would make it a regular place to eat. It was ‘interesting’ but the fact there was no menu, wonky seats and plastic tablecloths didn´t really do it for me and there was nothing that made the food stand out from any other traditional Canarian restaurant.
Friend and I could be out of step with the majority though because as we left the place was heaving, both rooms were packed and that nice little gap we had left to easily pull onto the road was long gone. So it was back a bit, forward a bit, back a bit more and breathe in, so as to squeeze through the gap.