The food reviews are not advertisements. We visit a different restaurant every month, we pay for the meal and we comment and give points as honestly as we can for the benefit of our readers. We make a point to visit only restaurants which we believe are worth reporting on.
*Key: Price: M - Dress Code: CC
|*FBA = First Bite Appeal||*Price Code (excl. drinks):
L = 15 - 30 Euros
M = 30 - 60 Euros
H = 50 Â– 100+ Euros
CC = Casual Comfortable
SC = Smart Casual
F = Formal
Following an Email from one of our readers, about the evening she and her family enjoyed as winners of our monthly quiz Â“Who am I?Â” at El Barlovento Restaurante in Sotogrande, we decided to re-review this fantastic and popular restaurant.El Barlovento restaurant, with Paco at the helm, built up a high reputation on the frontline in the marina in Sotogrande.
When the opportunity arose of moving a short distance to the main road, Paco seized the chance of taking over the large restaurant in the Hotel Las Camelias, at the entrance to the port of Sotogrande. This now also enables Paco to offer an additional service in respect of private rooms for business or private functions.
Now, with over 200 covers and an extensive landscaped terrace with fabulous views towards the sea and Sotogrande, a much larger selection of food is available on offer. Naturally, the daily purchase of fresh local fish from the markets, from which his reputation was built, will continue as a matter of course.
There are several traditional dishes to tempt your palate; one such is fish cooked in a salt crust. Meat dishes include two rather special recommended dishes; Garlic Chicken "Pollo al Ajillo" and the already popular "Las Camelias Paella" which has been a great favourite with PacoÂ’s dinners for many years.
The menu offers a very good choice of starters and first up is a choice of at least four soups:
Sopa de Marisco: this is a traditional sea food soup and is an aromatic and tasty delight.
Sopa de Picadillo: again this is a very traditional soup to this part of Spain and is a delicious concoction of Serrano Ham, boiled egg and fresh mint.
Gazpacho: there can be few people who havenÂ’t tried this tasty cold soup, however, being a summer dish, this may not be offered all year round.
The salad starters or side dishes are a treat on their own and would make a meal in themselves.
The mixed salad leaves nothing out, containing lettuce, tomato, onion, sweetcorn, tuna, asparagus and boiled egg. This is a typical Spanish salad and is made to enjoy throughout the entire meal. Other salads include a goatÂ’s cheese salad and a sun dried tomato and parmesan salad.
The starters proper are made up mainly, as you would expect, of traditional fish dishes.
The large prawns, cooked on the Â“PlanchaÂ” are fantastic and never fail to look and taste excellent. There are traditional fish croquets, although be aware, these are very filling and the anchovies are also very good. The special Paella is to die for, but is prepared only for a minimum of two people and comes in at Â€40.
Moving on to the main courses, these are again made up mainly of fish dishes, but this part of Spain is well known for its wide variety and diversity of sea food, so this is to be expected and indeed, is one of the main reasons this restaurant is so popular with both foreigners and the Spanish alike.
One favourite dish is the Â“Dorada a la planchaÂ” Dorada is a sea Bream and is a very popular fish in this area, it has a delicate flavour and at Barlovento you will find it cooked to perfection.
Other main courses apart from the fish include a delicious fillet or entrecote steak and again, traditional to this area, the fantastic local pork, either served as a fillet or chop.
The fish dishes all include boiled potatoes and vegetables and the meat dishes come with French Fries and grilled tomatoes.
The Spanish are famous for their sweet tooth and this is reflected in the choice of desserts at Barlovento. If you have resided in Spain for any length of time you will be familiar with the choice of desserts on offer and also aware just how filling traditional Spanish desserts are! No Spanish restaurant worth its salt is without the Â“Crema CatalanaÂ” this is a type of CrÃ¨me Caramel and very, very popular here, it is very good, however can be a little heavy on top of a big meal. There is a very good selection of ice creams and for the really sweet toothed, a Banoffee pie.
I would say that Barlovento is a very traditional Spanish restaurant and this makes it very popular with tourists, both Spanish and foreign. The service is very good and being a family run business the atmosphere is warm and friendly.