Restaurant review: Messina (Marbella, Spain)

16 08 2013

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

When restaurant does not achieve the level they are¬†reaching for…. ūüė¶

Visited Restaurante Messina 2nd time because first experience was quite impressive (see review from last year via link below). Decided to try Menu Messina because 1st time ordered starters, main courses and dessert from a la carte list.

A mistake we should not have made, especially after asking if kitchen could serve one menu without milk products. But waitress took our order anyeay after checking it first from the kitchen if it would be possible.

But, huge mistake from the restaurant concerned 2nd dessert, although our order was accepted. But let’s come back at the end of post and go first through smaller¬†gaps which restaurant trying to reach fine dining level, should really not afford.

Snacks

Layout and looks of snacks were impressive as last time. However, this time restaurant did not serve any greetings from the kitchen which usually starts the dinner. Waitress also explained too quickly how to go through small bites, so we had to partly guess, if we should eat 4th shrimps or marinated fish. So, we asked to get menu list back because it was not left on the table.

When ordering last time starter and main course from a la carte list, we got same type of snacks assortment to start with but it was not one of the a la carte portions. It was before starters.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.comRestaurante Messina - reijosfood.comRestaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

“Sea snail”

This exotic portion had to be eaten with fingers. Sea snail was not our favourite but maybe because it was quite chewy.

But, we wondered if we should go to wash our hands because restaurant did not provide towels to wipe our hands. If you have studied menu and wine list you might want to eat with clean fingers.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Squid sandwich

Again eating with fingers. Open up the packet and you find the sandwich. Would recommend the restaurant to provide those towels. Sandwich itself was delicious.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Sea urchim mi cuit and celery water

One of the best portions of the menu. Celery water did not include any additives and it was poured by waitress on top of the sea urchim.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Tuna “parpatana” with crispy bread and fresh tomato juice

Again delicious portion. Tomato juice was again poured by waitress on top of tuna and it fresh tomatoes tasted good.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Raw “grilled” crayfish and coconut

Crayfish was grilled from one side maybe 5 seconds but as it was fresh, it also tasted excellent. After eating crayfish waitress poured some fish broth in the coconut bowl. After mixing it with spoon, it changed into delicious fish soup. Well designed two-step portion by the chef, who is quite known in the area.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Barbacued red mullet

Portion was OK, but fish was a little bit over cooked and therefore dry.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Grilled sweetbread with yuzu cream

Rare delicacy but composition of sweetbread did not impress. Maybe it was our personal feeling and someone might like it.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Malaga’s baby goat with pumpkin and mini pickled vegetables

Maybe baby goat should be greasy but this time it did not fit after soft sweetbread. Too close to each other.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

But, after finishing so called main courses, one waitress poured 20 cm long, green olive oil trail on the tablecloth while taking oil bowls away. Instead of changing tablecloth she covered the trail with napkin. Easier for the waitress but undesirable for customers.

But, before serving desserts, one waitress put dessert cutleries on the table. Then head waitress removed them, cleaned the table with scraper and put them back. Something had forgotten from the first waitress.

‚ÄúSpanish French toast‚ÄĚ Thai style

Really delicious dessert and other portion was replaced sorbet without milk as was planned.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.comRestaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

Yoghurth Chantilly and strawberries

But, then came the disaster! Restaurant had decided not to serve anything to replace the second dessert which included milk products. Waitress did not bother to tell that, just first served the dessert for person without milk product menu and then asked us to share it. She also explained that it does not include milk! We gave dessert back after commenting mistake but restarant served it again, now to me. Asked now what had happened to dessert without milk products. This was the moment restaurant had to tell that nothing was coming. Head waitress asked if she should discuss with the kitchen.

Too late, I said, and asked for check.

But, restaurant first tried to invoice whole value of the menu, but we requested 8‚ā¨ discount from 78‚ā¨ menu, which we got after discussion. Picture below is from the dessert we did not eat because milkless second dessert was not served at all.

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com

But, what was also annoying was the habit to serve champagne Dom Perignon Vintage 2003, we had ordered, every 5 minutes. Our dinner was interrupted continually by waitresses pouring noble drink about 2 cl’s at a time.¬†Two times they almost served male first and 1 time they did so. Small thing but should be obvious for this restaurant to serve ladies first.

Messina tries to be fine dining restaurant. Modern decor, menu and appearance of food portions shows this to be true. But too much trying on the service side without properly trained dining room staff, does not carry.

If you decide to try Messina, order separate portions from a la carte list and do not ask changes for portions. Maybe also best time to visit restaurant is outside of main summer holiday season.

REVIEW: FOOD 4-/5 – SERVICE – 2/5 – OVERALL GRADE 2+/5

http://www.restaurantemessina.com/

Restaurante Messina - reijosfood.com





Restaurant review: König

11 05 2013

This review is exceptional! If you want to know why, please continue reading…..

Tommy Hillfiger shop

Karl K√∂nig was the very first owner of restaurant K√∂nig and gave it his own name. Since that the name “K√∂nig” has remained – in different floors with different kind of concepts , sometimes succcesful – sometimes not. Today, K√∂nig serves variable menu, lunch buffet, karaoke, grooving bar and grand athmosphere? Excellent location, on pedestrian street Mikonkatu 4, opposite are Tommy Hilfiger shop and Galleria Esplanad. In the past years K√∂nig had quite popular terrace, remember eating there several times.

But after Center-Inn sold König and few other restaurants to S-Group, would say it is time to say goodbay for efforts to serve anything else than fast food.

Dropped by in König restaurant & bar without knowing about the downturn it has faced. Arrived at 5PM on Friday, only one table in use. That should have ringed alarm bells!

A la carte menu did not include actual starters so decided to order only main courses.

Ordered Salmon salad Asian style salmon salad with fresh lettuce, grilled salmon, marinated vegetables and chili vinaigrette and as there was Asparagus weeks from special a la carte list Asparagus, lavaret and shrimps White and green asparagus, fried lavaret, shrimps, potatoes and vegettables.

Salmon saladLavaret and asparagus

What a dissappointment! Salmon piece was small and salty and salad wet. Marinated vegetables were mushrooms and onions! Maybe old salad was tried to hide under vinaigrette?

Lavaret had not seen salt (maybe salmon had it all) and asparagus were, how should I say it, interesting…Only positive thing was that fish bones had been removed from lavaret. Price for asparagus speciality was way too high considering the quality level. Can not remember when we had to leave restaurant eating only half of portions and had to eat again at home.

Salmon saladGreen asparagus

As K√∂nig is part of huge bar complex with famous summer temptation “mummotunneli” (not so polite to translate), choose some other place for dining. It is not anymore what it used to be. We have not given so low grade before, but it is also partly because of price level which does not match with the bar type of dining room and quality of food. On top of this all wine bottles are over 40‚ā¨’s which in this restaurant is odd. Had glass of Cono Sur Bicicleta riesling which partly saved the dinner.

One suggestion for the restaurant; please change the name….

Restaurant König

REVIEW: FOOD 1/5 – SERVICE 3-/5 – OVERALL GRADE 2-/5

http://www.center-inn.fi/konig/en/home

PS. Luckily Finland won Russia in Ice Hockey World Championship game 3-2 and leads now Preliminary round in Helsinki (half of the games are played in Stockholm)





Restaurant review: Glogatan 4

14 04 2013

Restaurant Glogatan 4 was opened in February 2013. Swedish name comes from the street name restaurant is located and from the hotel name Glo where it was opened. It is part of Kämp -Group which has hotel Kämp just beside Glogatan 4. Kitchen is open but does not appear to diners because of pillars and visual barriers. Bar is now in the middle of dining room.

Glogatan 4 kitchenGlogatan 4 barGlogatan 4

Extremely interesting discovery are the Finnish Hermanni wineyard wines on the otherwise short wine list! Mostly used grapes in the wines are white currant in sparkling and white wines and black currant in red wines. Actually it is quite difficult to compare Finnish wines to “normal” wines because of the berries used. Yes, berries not grapes. Anyway had to try for aperitif Hermanni, Haigu Extra Sec sparkling wine.

DSC03717¬ī¬ī

BUT…. Hermanni sparkling wine was finished! So we had to order something else.

Anyway, started the dinner with Spring potatoes Dill / Juniper berry / Roe and Spring carrots with tarragon Carrot / Tarragon / Fennel. To be honest, one of the best starters ever. Spring is late but these dishes carried it closer.

Dessert

Restaurant bread was also really delicious, served with two different butters. One, apple spiced butter, was in the tube, it is not toothpaste ūüôā

DSC03729???????????????????????????????

For main courses ordered Smoked fish Pickled cucumber / Radish / Spring onion / Carrot and Steak 200 g with specialities. Serving the fish (whitefish) was nice experience. It was smoked in metal box which was brought to the table. You seldom get smoked fish and how it was served was amazing.

Entrecote with cole slaw salad and carrot pure was a little but chewy because there was almost no fat which is typical for entrecote steaks. Side dishes were mouth-watering. See also knife on the plank; it is typical Finnish knife from the past.

Smoked whitefish

Smoked whitefishSteak

For desserts, because there was still plenty of room for food due to quite small portions (except steak), tried Rhubarb and liquorice Rhubarb / Liquorice pudding / Ymer sorbet and Chocolate. First dessert was tailored because we asked not to use milk products and still it was a success. Chocolate reminded from childhood; ice cream stick was delicious and it was dipped on white cholocate crumb.

DessertChocolate

Food is excellent and service even better. Dining room was too dark at the end of space because it was difficult to see menu’s. Lightning is better by Glogatan (Kluuvikatu), ask therefore for window table. Hotel guests dine at the restaurant, all neighbor tables were reserved by Russian guests which made athmosphere international.

REVIEW: FOOD 4+/5 РSERVICE 4,5/5 РOVERALL GRADE 4+/5 Note! Restaurant has changed name and style in Spring 2014

We found quite interesting black and white pictures all over the place…especially on the way to rest rooms.

http://www.glogatan4.fi/en/





Restaurant review: Persilja

17 02 2013

Restaurant Persilja (engl. Parsley) was opened 2006 is same location where restaurant Basilica operated before. Suburban restaurant menu consists of food from Mediterranean countries, mainly Greek and Italy. Pizzas and pastas are large part of the menu. In the summer big terrace serves diners and if sun shines it is very popular. Wine list is short and missing riesling, our favourite. But wines are affordable compared to many other restaurants in the downtown of Helsinki.

Have enjoyed sevaral times Meze -lautanen Meze plate Parma ham, mozzarella, artichoke, sun dried tomatoes, aubergine , dolmades, bahar salad and bread for starter and can recommend. Portion for two is quite big and almost is enough to take your hunger away.

If you order a la carte portion you always get greetings from kitchen to start with. Foccacia, olives and tsatsiki.

Persilja antipasti

This time started late lunch with Dolmades & tsatsiki -dippi Grape leafs filled with rice and tsatsiki dip and Bruschetta Roasted pesto bread with aubergine, artichoke, tomatoes and mozzarella. Both were OK. Would have prefered warm dolmades because then spices emerge better. Bruschettas (2 pieces) were perfect, crusty and soft at the same time.

DolmadesBruschetta

For main courses had Kananlihasouvlaki Chicken breast skewers, rice, pomodor-demuglas sauce and Antonella Chicken breast filled with parma ham and mozzarella cheese, pesto potatoes and avocado sauce. Meat in skewers was too salty, otherwise good combination. Antonella (maybe name of the cook or owner?) is also our favourite at home. Salty parma ham and soft mozzarella stuffed in the chicken pocket form delicious combination. Maybe this time chicken was a little bit dry.

Chicken skewerChicken

Portions at restaurant Persilja are always large. Small problem is the amount of salt used in the chicken.

Service is attentive, one example: You can order also take away food from the restaurant. Waiter helped to carry portions to a car for a man with babe in arms. Outside temperature 0C degrees and waiter did not even put a jacket on.

REVIEW: FOOD 3+/5 – SERVICE 4-/5 – OVERALL GRADE 3,5/5

http://www.ravintolapersilja.fi/etusivu

Restaurant Persilja








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