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“A great performance”

Restaurante Raco de l'abat
Ranked #3 of 685 Restaurants in Tarragona
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Mediterranean, Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Groups
Dining options: Breakfast, After-hours, Dinner, Reservations
Description: Local medieval, acogedor y con buena cocina de mercado. Tenemos menú al mediodia en verano de Martes a Sábado. En invierno de Martes a Domingo.Por la noche abrimos de miércoles a Sábado.
Reviewed 13 July 2017

For someone who is not very adventurous when it comes to dining, taking a table for six in a restaurant that actively makes a point of not having a menu was a risk. However, the personality of the restauranteur on first entry made the risk one worth taking - and it's one we were all very pleased with.

The three course €15 a head meal (at lunchtime at least) comes with choices. However, the options were hard to decipher precisely because there was no menu and the owner spoke little English (but to be fair, we were in HIS country and we spoke no Spanish). However, when plates are brought out for other tables they are shown to diners and so the gamble was not hard to take.

The food was excellent. I had salad with cheese, then perfectly cooked and tender entrecôte steak, followed by a caramel coated thin-layer cake. I was a happy diner. Others had shellfish with shortcut pasta, perfectly cooked sea bass, and mango sorbet with a melt-in-the-mouth mini chocolate pudding.

The service is wonderfully slow and there is no pressure selling of drinks. It seems to be the case of 'if the diner wants it they'll ask'. The owner is clearly very passionate about his restaurant, the food his wife cooks, and he loves families (our two families had a teenager each).

All in all, this restaurant was the best we've experienced in this holiday which included Valencia as well as the Costa Dorada. I have no axe to grind and would heartedly recommend it, especially if you're a fussy anglicised diner like me.

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Thank AdamBern
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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12 - 16 of 575 reviews

Reviewed 16 June 2017 via mobile

Never been to Tarragona but as a Portuguese I'm not a stranger to Spanish cuisine.
What a discovery! Booked using tripadvisor and I was greeted with a rustic and ancient environment, but very comfortable.
No menu available. Some could say it's strange but if you have confidence in your products and preparation, makes sense.
We had truly amazing fried boquerones (I think they are baby mackerel), grilled squid with an amazing garlic/tomato sauce, grilled tuna with onion confit, mussels and a nice Mediterranean salad.
Tarragona white wine was very fruity and fresh, for desert a universally known chocolate cake with ice cream
What a discovery!
Owner was very friendly and presented all dishes.
To be continued...

Thank PPeixoto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 June 2017

They had no printed menu we could look at but a quick description of the day's offering immediately lured us in, and we're happy we did. They had a not-quite-paella seafood rice dish which was delicious, as were the red peppers stuffed with bacalao and the sardinas and atún a la plancha. The service and ambience made us feel more than welcome and our only regret is we won't be able to come back anytime soon. This is a great alternative to the touristy options in the old city and a chance to eat like the locals do, in a friendly and cozy environment.

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Thank rocomendez
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2017

A day trip by train to see the historic sites of Tarragona was much enhanced by lunch at this great restaurant, in an alley - Carrer de l'abat -just off the main thoroughfare leading to the cathedral. Away from the restaurants in the square, which unashamedly set their sights on tourist and day-tripper clientele, Raco de l'abat is in an old, presumably medieval, stone building, complete with arches and candles dripping countless years of wax. We were welcomed by the owner, who could not have been more friendly and amenable. He spoke a little English and was keen to explain the restaurant's food philosophy, the menu and to literally show us some of the key dishes as he was taking them past our table on the way to other diners. We were overwhelmed and delighted by the trouble he took to ensure we had a great experience. The dishes we chose from the €15 lunch menu, all cooked by the owner's wife, were delicious. My wife chose toasts topped with anchovies, tuna, olives, salad, for her starter, which she loved. I had a typical Catalan squid and potato stew, which was also a delight. We both chose a main course of daurade (gilthead bream) a la plancha, which was cooked simply and was wonderfully fresh. Our host even offered to bone and fillet our fish for us, an offer we gratefully accepted.
My dessert of a refreshingly sharp lemon sorbet and my wife's perfect panacotta completed a great meal, which was washed down with an acceptable carafe of house red (though I think next time we would push the boat out and choose a wine from the wine list) and mineral water. With two coffees and a bill that came to less than €40, we were certainly very impressed with this restaurant and imagine it would be hard to beat elsewhere in Tarragona in terms of quality, value and, most particularly, in the friendliness of the welcome. Definitely recommended.

Thank Mark J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 May 2017 via mobile

After trying many restaurants in Tarragona for 4 days this was the last and best one. The food was incredibly well prepared, tasty and healthy, fresh fish and seafood, amazing wine and lovely deserts. We were just surprised by the quality of the food and the service of Julio, who was passionate about his restaurant and gave us the right suggestions. You must visit this place if you are close to Tarragona!

1  Thank Erica F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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