DIDN'T QUITE BLOW ME AWAY YET A DECENT RESTAURANT OVERALL
Bar El Molino (Lanzarote)
Member Name: lak11
Bar El Molino (Lanzarote)
Advantages: Pleasant interior, nicely cooked food
Disadvantages: Lack of vegetarian options, not quite as friendly as most restaurants in the area
I remember a little Spanish from school and know that 'El Molino' translates as 'The Mill'
On my recent holiday to the Island of Lanzarote, one of Spain's Canary Islands, I found myself hugely disappointed with the food on offer at our hotel complex. We were staying there on an all-inclusive board basis and so we hadn't expected to have to eat out too often but as the food was far from great, we did. In fact,we found ourselves going out in the evening and sometimes also for lunch, to eat. It wasn't so much that the food in our complex was cooked badly but there was very little menu choice and variety overall, and for vegetarians there was no meat-free option at all. My husband, my son and his fiancée, agreed with me that we would have to eat out for most of our meals. And also I do think it is important to help these resorts to keep going and if tourists on all-inclusive can still manage to spend some money in restaurants and bars then this should greatly help to keep them going, after all all-inclusive hotels must make it harder for them to survive if guests don't venture out and spend some Euros. Well, we ended up spending plenty and much more than we had budgeted for, although I will say that (fortunately) I thought that in general, Lanzarote's restaurants offered reasonable prices. I wish we had stayed in Lanzarote on a self catering or bed and breakfast board basis. Oh well, next time!
This was the first restaurant that we chose for an evening meal, outside of our hotel, whilst on our holiday. We took a taxi from outside our hotel and looked in a few bars and restaurants and we found that the restaurant workers vied for our trade I think somehow we managed to be commandeered into this one. It looked appealing which was also a reason why we paused and let our decision be made for us but, usually I have a better look at the menu posted outside before deciding to see if there are good choices for all of us, whether we eat meat or not. I think, as this was the first time we had dined out during our holiday, we really didn't expect meat free choices to be so limited. Also, after spending many holidays in Greece and Cyprus, we have become accustomed to there being several choices on offer. It was getting late as well and we were all hungry holidaymakers.
It did look nice in here and with more of a formal look to it than most other restaurants and bars along this stretch; with waiters looking like waiters and tables looking inviting with crisp tablecloths, sparkling cutlery and gleaming glassware.
Wine was available by the bottle but only the house wine could be ordered by the glass. The waiter said he would bring some house wine for me to try which he did. I didn't like it. My husband and son said they would help out (most kind of them!) by having a glass of wine too. Because of this I chose a red sauvignon. It was alright but in truth, nothing particularly special.
Throughout the meal, in addition to the wine, we ordered two glasses of beer, ( I stuck to wine ) an apple juice and a Malibu with coke.
At the end of the meal we were given complimentary glasses of the local honey rum liqueur.
I thought the menu offered a good choice but ONLY in the case of meat eaters. There was a very limited choice for vegetarians. I did actually find that most places that we visited on this island were limited in meat free choices. However, I would say that El Molino offered les choice than many.
The menu offered both Spanish and English dishes from the plain and simple to fancier type choices for starters, mains and dessert. There were various cuts of steak on the menu.
We all decided to have a starter and our choices were:
Prawns cooked in garlic
Mushrooms cooked in garlic.
These starters really were delicious and were enjoyed by all. The sizes of the portions were good.
and accompanied by a bread roll and butter.
My husband and son both chose sirloin steak from the main menu and asked for them to be cooked medium. They were both, I was told, were cooked how they wanted them. In fact, both really enthused over their steaks and actually commented that the steaks were up there with the best they had eaten in any restaurant, either at home or abroad. Their meals were served with chips, grilled tomatoes and mushrooms.
The desserts on the menu sounded inviting but we were all too full to try any.
As I looked at the menu when I was choosing my main course the waiter seemed in a rush to take our order. I explained that I was looking for meat free dishes as two of us were vegetarians. I thought he might have made a suggestion or two but instead said, "Okay!" and walked off. I think he meant: each to his own but what do you expect me to do about it? He wasn't so much rude as unconcerned.
I chose from the very limited choice for vegetarians of a vegetarian lasagne. When served this looked inviting and did in fact taste lovely but I do get a little bored of the usual vegetarian choice of a lasagne.
My daughter-in-law to be chose a Margherita pizza. It was huge but did look good and she managed to eat most of it and so I feel must have met with her approval.
A waiter took our order and brought our drinks and a waitress served our food. The waitress was very polite and smiley but we found the waiter a little stand offish; perhaps, at least from my own point of view, even verging on being a little intimidating. I like good table service but enjoy a little rapport with waiting staff.
But there wasn't much wrong with the service it just wasn't as amiable as one often finds in holiday resorts, especially at times when the staff aren't exactly rushed off their feet.
The meal altogether came to around Euro86. I think taking into consideration what we had to eat and our drinks then the meal was reasonably priced, but it did come to more than any other meal we enjoyed on our holiday. However, I would say, when taking into consideration how much my husband and son enjoyed their steak meals then I suppose it must have been good value. It was a pity though that there wasn't more choice for those of us who don't eat meat. If there had been more vegetarian options then we would have returned to El Molino for a further meal or two.
I would say that El Molino is quite a good dining choice for wheelchair users as it is on level ground, although in this area most bars and restaurants are on one level, or there will be a ramp or two. Also the restaurant is easy to get to as taxis can drop passengers off outside the restaurant as this is where taxis can stop and much of this stretch is pedestrianized.
One thing to think about though for wheelchair users is available toilet facilities as many bars and restaurants seem to have very small toilet cubicles which can be awkward. However, El Molino's facilities were quite good with the toilets being larger and more accessible than in many other restaurants.
As already mentioned, the lavatories here are roomy. I found them to be clean. My husband said the same of the gents toilet.
El Molino is located in the popular area of the small tourist resort of Playa de los Pocillos which is a suburb of the larger resort of Puerto del Carmen, in Lanzarote. It is close to the airport; within walking distance and can also be reached by bus, car, taxi, or bicycle, if you're feeling energetic.
Here is the address:
Naos de S/N
35500 Arrecife (Lanzarote)
We did think that El Molino was a little more expensive than most other restaurants that we dined at during our holiday, although the food was very good and the surroundings were pleasant.
It was a nice restaurant and more formal than many in the area but bearing in mind the lack of vegetarian options and no effort by waiter to help with explaining the menu, such as whether a dish contained meat or not, then it did lose a few marks with me.
I would recommend this restaurant still but not to vegetarians without first giving a warning about their not being a great choice of meat free dishes.
Summary: A decent restaurant overall but not my favourite in the area