Restaurante Antonio- Talavera de la Reina, Spain

Talavera de la Reina from the Be Live hotel.
We happened upon this restaurant out of necessity, really. The story behind the discovery of the food is better than the story of the food.

Jet-lagged and suffering from altitude sickness, we wandered into La Taberna de Mi Abuelo in Madrid near Rastro. We struck up a conversation with the very amicable owner Daniel (Danny). 

Danny and Mauricio in La Taberna de Mi Abuelo

During this conversation we asked where would a Spaniard go to buy tile if he wanted to tile his kitchen nicely. His answer was Talavera de la Reina. Therefore, we landed in Talavera de la Reina in search of tile the next morning.

The tile search is more a story for my review travel blog, so I'll save it for that. However, I did have a steak while in the tiny town and no steak goes unnoticed. 

After meeting with a very interesting lady who creates and paints the tiles by hand, we ventured out to find lunch and discuss our options. Talavera de la Reina is mostly an agricultural town full of locals and the odd tourist. 

Downtown is packed during the lunch time and it took a while to find a place to park. We finally did and decided to try out Restaurante Antonio

The front room is a typical tapas bar. We ordered a beer and were somewhat disappointed to only find tapas. After all, it was our third day living on tapas and were ready for a full meal. We found there was a large, full service restaurante in the back of the establishment and decided to try it out for lunch. Ladies and gentlemen, that was the best decision we made in Talavera!

The place was packed full of locals on their lunch hours - yes, hours. Two to be exact. 

Therefore, we knew were in the right place. For 10 euro each, we each had a drink (yes, that carafe is one drink), an appetizer, a main course, bread, and dessert. 

I wanted a steak because I had not had one so far on the trip. I knew what was coming because we were in an agricultural area and I've been exposed to Spain's "steak" before. The steak was the thinnest of the thin. Maybe 6oz. I was extremely impressed by the fact that they cooked it to perfection - medium rare. I have never, ever, had a flank, skirt or any other thin steak cooked accurately when I ordered medium rare. It even had some char! I do not know how they did it but that is no small feat! The flavor wasn't bad and for 10 euro, there will be no complaining out of me.

Mauricio ordered the special of the day, which was a braised pork knuckle. I know this is a steak blog but that thing was exquisite and deserves and honorable mention. I took a bite and it was the perfect blend of smoke, salt, just enough fat and melt-in-your-mouth goodness to be amazing. 

My final thoughts are - if you are in Talavera de la Reina (there are several Talavera so and so's in Spain), go to Restaurante Antonio for lunch. Maybe don't order the steak, unless you have a real addiction like me, but eat something and you won't be disappointed!

No comments:

Post a Comment