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Los Elementos

Los Elementos

Mastil 4, Calle Pino Carrasco, El Boulevard, Torre-Pacheco

Date of Visit: 20/10/2023

Los Elementos has been on our list of places to eat for while now. Although a relatively new restaurant, the chef and owner Gary Cromie is by no means new to the Murcia food scene and has built a solid reputation for producing high quality dishes.

We arrive shortly before 8pm. The place is busy and their Friday evening Fish and Chips promotion, ‘Fish and Fizz’ is very popular. It has to be said, that the Fish and Chips being served do look pretty good, but having been generously gifted a meal voucher by friends (I should clarify, friends in no way associated with the restaurant), we are here to push the boat out.

We are greeted by the very competent Kaitlyn, who shows us to our table, takes our drinks order, and explains the menu.

I love reading menus, particularly when I’m not paying and can ignore the prices. And this is a good read; drool-inducing dishes with clever accompaniments that feel like part of the dish rather than something chucked on at the last minute as is too often the case in some restaurants.

We start with the Amuse Bouche; “a small savoury item of food served as an appetizer before a meal”, for those that were wondering. It translates to “it amuses the mouth“ Google continues to reliably inform me. Well, I guess that’s got to be a good thing.

Ours is a warm tomato and sweet potato soup, served in a small glass. Despite being seemingly simple, it’s surprisingly good. Very good in fact. I’m not sure if my mouth is amused but it’s certainly impressed.

Both myself and my son Archie follow this with the Slow Cooked Duck Leg. My wife Jo selects the prawn salad. Three impeccably presented dishes arrive. This, I think, is where Los Elementos shines. They say that you eat with your eyes first, and I’m already stuffed from rubbernecking at all the dishes being brought out to the other customers whilst we waited.

Of course, it still has to stack up in terms of taste, and the duck truly does. Served alongside a perfect oblong of dauphinoise potato, the slow cooked meat doesn’t so much fall of the bone as seductively undresses it. It’s tender and juicy, whilst the red wine jus is so ostentatiously rich it probably employs its own financial advisor. With my food blog in mind, I search for some clever adjectives to describe the taste. “Flipping ‘eck. This is bloody good”. It’s still the best I can come up with.

Jo’s Prawn salad is an elevated version of a classic, with the addition of fresh avocado and served with a crunchy crostini.

My choice of Slow Braised Beef Cheek for my main course was probably a bit optimistic after such a rich and filling starter, but the beef melts away into something almost gelatinous making it very palatable. It’s served alongside bacon and cabbage mashed potato - it's the kind of thing my mum did when I was a kid, hiding veg within my mash to trick me into eating them. She was clearly onto something. If only she had thought to add some bacon, it might just have worked, as this definitely does.

Archie, however, is completely undeterred by his starter, and I can only look on with Dad admiration as he devours his prime fillet of beef, with the obvious advantage of an appetite of a typical 14-year-old. These days I can never eat that much. I just look like I do.

His onion rings which both Jo and I steal from his plate are glorious (as stolen onion rings so frequently are). Huge, juicy white onions with a crispy batter. No wonder the fish and chips are so popular here when they make batter like this.

We share a dessert. Chocolate panna cotta served with fresh strawberries, chunky, gloriously sticky honeycomb and what I can only describe as a ludicrously fruity intense strawberry slush that made my tabs (ears) laugh. That’s a Nottingham saying my wife taught me. An accurate description, but one which you’ll just have to trust me on.

What’s very noticeable about every dish at Los Elementos, is that there’s no one, star ingredient that shines above the rest. The same level of attention is equally and liberally given to every element on the plate. And I’ve just realised that's literally what Los Elementos means..

There's no questioning Gary's credentials, but importantly he's built a solid team around him that critically includes the front of house, who are both professional and knowledgeable. It was a busy evening, but our waitress remained unflappable and attentive at all times, resulting in a perfect evening on all counts.

Amuse Bouche for the three of us, three starters, three mains, one dessert, one cocktail, a bottle of wine and two bottles of water came to €120,00.

We will certainly go again and happily spend our own money next time.

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