TUCKED away on the corner of the commercial centre in Elviria is a gem of a Japanese restaurant called Meca.
When I last went there with the artist’s agent Stephen Howes, we noticed an artist’s easel propped against the wall across the road.
He swore I had put it there as a joke. On this occassion, no easel, agent or Betty. In fact I attended with my good friend David from London, who has been a regular fan of Meca when visiting the coast, the stalwart Barrie, and his friend Mike, who was also visiting.
This small Japanese has always been quite the hot table for those in the know, and has been a favourite of mine for ages.
Japanese food has always been an acquired taste. Many readers refusing to push the boundaries out when tempted to give it a try as it has the reputation of being just ‘raw fish’ and expensive.
Let me assure you that Meca is far, far more than this, with an extensive menu including many excellent hot dishes. And as far as price is concerned excellent value too.
We started off with a selection of Nigiri sushi – scallop, boiled shrimp, tuna and salmon as well as prawns tempura rolls. Very fresh, with delicate rice. Stunningly delicious.
Then sashimi – also very fresh, and full of flavour. Just perfect. Mike, who used to be Barrie’s bank manager in the UK (amazing they are still talking!) was apprehensive, but was seen tucking in. Excellent feedback, all the starters were totally wonderful and enthusiastically polished off.
At Meca the service is swift and efficient, and the food beautifully presented. I have got to know Lin well over the years. He can be quite funny, and his English is excellent. He often reminds me of Kato in the Peter Seller’ Pink Panther movies – I even go as far as encouraging to attack me with mad karate hand gestures, and he joins in! All jolly good fun!
Now it was time for the main courses. Some chicken Teriyaki was presented, also beautifully cooked. Just perfect. Got the thumbs up from all of us. Then some ribs in an amazing sauce, also top marks. Lin then brought out some prawns tempuras – in terrific batter and totally succulent. The best ever. Barrie nodded his approval –“this food is a five!” he announced.
All this being washed down with a bottle of house pink, in my view an excellent accompaniment to Japanese. Then some king prawns arrived, also in a brilliant sauce and all of this accompanied by tender rice and the most amazing noodles ever.
This was a feast to die for. I asked Lin what the average cost per head was at Meca, and it came back a very reasonably €25-30 per head including drinks. Excellent value.
Meca delivers, and very well too. Shrug off any inhibitions you may have about Japanese food being raw or expensive and give them a try soon. I promise you will be impressed, and soon Meca will be on your list of favourites too. I just can’t promise and more easels on show,but I am sure Lin will be happy to oblige with some karate movements for you.
Meca Japanese Restaurant
Commercial Centre, Elviria, Marbella
(Round the corner from OpenCor)
Tel: 952 830 365