Before we ate, I was thinking that the title for this post could be something along the lines of ‘Average Service, Amazing Food’, but then we ate and discovered that title just wasn’t meant to be. Noviembre Healthy Food looked great online, and from the outside as well. I was, of course, drawn in by their extensive gluten free menu, and was also pleased to see that the decor was tasteful and bright. We were excited to try it, and some of us (I won’t name names) were a little (a lot) hungover, so a good meal was needed.
Turns out, a lot of people had the same lunch desires as us, so we had to wait at the bar for a table to become free. I didn’t mind this at all, if anything it made me more excited to eat there, but what I did mind is the lack of friendliness and warmth from the staff.
We sat at the bar and ordered coffee, which was served quite promptly. When our table was ready, though, was when it all started to go a bit downhill. Rather than taking us to our table, we were told there was one available and directed with a wave in the general direction of the other side of the restaurant. We then had to wait for about ten minutes for someone to walk close enough to us for me to be able to ask for a gluten free menu. So, not fab first impressions.
The juices we ordered were quite delicious, I went for the Hirosima (orange, carrot and ginger), and my housemate decided on the Sunt-Zo (orange, pineapple, lemon and mint). They were refreshing and served in cute little glass bottles, nothing to complain about there. I really enjoyed mine.
We were also brought a little appetiser on the house, tortilla chips and hummus, which I would have called a really lovely gesture, had the waitress not put it down on the table and announced to me ‘you can’t eat this’. I appreciate being told, although I do think they could have provided something that I could eat, or maybe advised me against the dish in a nicer way?
Eventually we ordered our food, and all three of us went for burgers. Now I have to say, Noviembre’s gluten free menu is one of the best and most extensive that I have seen, especially in Spain. I had the choice of burgers, pasta, steak, multiple breakfast dishes and so many chips-based dishes.
Again, my housemate and I chose similarly, with both of us going for the Lucca burger. I asked for mine to be cooked to medium, and Esme requested rare. When the burgers came, Esme’s was definitely rare. It had maybe touched the pan for a couple of seconds on each side which isn’t to my taste personally, but if it’s yours then you most likely would have been pretty pleased.
I wouldn’t have called my burger medium done, it was quite hard and a little burnt on the outside. The rest of the contents was delicious though (mozzarella, avocado and pesto mayonnaise).
I wasn’t a huge fan of the gluten free burger bun here, but then I never really am. I have yet to find a really good gluten free burger bun, or gluten free bread for that matter. The bun fell apart which wasn’t massively surprising, although obviously I would prefer for this not to happen. The alternatives just aren’t anywhere near the real thing.
However, both of my friends’ gluten-full burger buns fell apart as well, which I’d never really seen happen before and which obviously wasn’t great, and was definitely a key factor in my labelling this meal as average.
The fries were alright. That’s all I can really say about them. They tasted great with the pesto mayonnaise, but without it they definitely could have done with some more seasoning.
So, overall, not the best lunch in Málaga. The reviews for Noviembre are fab when you look on Google, which is one of the reasons we chose here, so maybe we were just unlucky in our bad experience. The restaurant was super busy, with a queue out the door of people without bookings waiting for tables, and every empty table in the place sporting a ‘reserved sign’, but this is never really excuse for bad service. We found ourselves feeling quite ignored.
I don’t really like being so negative over on this blog, but I also think it’s important to be honest and let you guys know what I really think!
My next post will be more positive, promise!