Paco Meralgo is a reasonably large place with two rooms of small tables, bar seating on two sides of the kitchen and bar seating around some of the walls. We could not get a reservation so we showed up when they first opened hoping to get one of the unreserved seats at the bar. It turned out they did have a table available which does give you a bit more room, but everywhere here seating is tight. Service is friendly and efficient but it doesn’t have the feel of a place to sit and linger over your meal. Nevertheless, it does serve some tasty food with a large selection to chose from.
We started with their version of “patatas bravas” which are fried potatoes covered with spicy sauce. Theirs were crispy potatoes with a nice soft center covered sitting on some hot sauce and then covered with a mayo-like sauce that also had a nice hit of spiciness. They were wonderful.
The fresh prawns in garlic sauce came out with the oil still bubbling. The smell was intoxicating. They were good sized prawns, very fresh and full of terrific flavors.
The artichoke omelette was tasty but mild and unfortunately was not very attractive. Its color was unappealing but they did keep the eggs moist, but overall the flavor impact was missing from this one.
The garlic-fried beef was much like the prawn dish, served bubbling but this one had some crunchy chips of garlic to eat with the tender beef. It was cooked a perfect rare.
The seared foie gras was served on a piece of nut bread that had also been cooked on a griddle. A dollop of applesauce was in between and then the whole pile was covered with a savory brown sauce and some chopped nuts. The foie was cooked perfectly and the entire dish was a total yum. None of this got sent back to the kitchen!
For sweets we tried their version of Catalan French toast or Torrija. It was fried to a crispy exterior and had a nice custardy center but was not as special as the one at Taverna del Clinic. That being said, none of it was left on the plate!
The Catalan custard was a lovely custard with a fairly thick sugary top. Served with a crispy cookie it was a good sweet fix. We finished with a wildly yellow after dinner drink suggested by our fun server. A nice way to end a very tasty food experience.