El Pirata

Address:  5-6 Down St, W1J 
Tw: @ElPirataMayfair
Cuisine: Spanish


El Pirata’s menu is suited to everyone’s fancy. With an extensive range of tapas style sharing dishes to choose from to more heartier mains.

Between my guest and I, we tried a good mix of their menu and left feeling like we had eaten a feast.

We started off with some padron peppers and Montaditos de jamón serrano (toasted bread with olive oil and fresh tomatoes topped with cured ham). The peppers were lightly seasoned and cooked with a touch of salt. The tomato spread on the crusty bread, mixed together with the cured ham and peppers was great.

Padron peppers

We moved on to a few tapas style dishes and had the salpicón de marisco (prawns, squid, mussel and octopus, Spanish vinaigrette salad), gambas al pil-pil (prawns in olive oil, garlic and dried hot chilli peppers) and chorizo al vino (Spanish sausage in a red wine sauce). Out of the three, the chorizo dish was my personal fave, although I’m not impartial to a bit of seafood.

Chorizo al vino

If you thought we had enough food already, we finished with the paella Valenciana (classic Spanish dish of rice, shellfish and chicken). I normally expect the paella to take a little bit longer than the rest of the dishes, but our attention was kept off the wait with a few cocktails and one too many glasses of wine. This was a nice dish, but could have done with a touch more spice.


Set over two floors with a winding staircase and dark wood interiors, El Pirata, is a tapas bar with a lot of character and authenticity.

The food and service was consistent and well balanced and the prices were quite reasonable. They offer a good tapas selection and everything we ate was cooked to satisfaction.

Despite how busy they were on a Wednesday evening, we didn’t feel rushed or forgotten throughout our experience. Definitely one to return to.

Ideal for: Tapas and date night

Overall Rating ★★★★

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