A Good Manchego is Hard to Find – Review of Chef’s Choice Menu at El Faro

While I am very much a woman of my own mind, sometimes I get overwhelmed and paralysed by indecision. Especially where a buffet is concerned or a menu where everything sounds amazing.

I also hate “Menu Envy”…you know when you finally order something then your man/friend/random nearby diner orders something far more interesting. It’s like FOMO….the foodie edition.

This is why the rise of tasting menus are so good for someone like me. The newest tasting menu on the block is being offered by El Faro at the Marsa Malasz Kempinski which I believe is one of the best new restaurants in Doha – innovative and interesting food, great service and a dead set sexy room. The trifecta.

A tasting menu in three acts, the Chef’s Choice sees the first is a being a selection of tapas served in an actual paella dish including Spanish cold cut selection of cured meats, manchego cheese (a sharp sheep milk cheese and one of my favorite), fried croquetas stuffed with cheese and also meat. Other dishes include lightly deep fried mixed seafood, the famous patatos braves coated in a spicy sauce and Russian Salad, which was the only miss for me on the platter.

Small but perfectly formed

Small but perfectly formed

Hits got me were the beautifully fried croquettes stuffed with cheese and of course the potatoes. I haven’t met a fried potato I didn’t like.

The main event is a paella, served between two with choices including the sticky lobster, chicken, vegetarian and the fideua which is made with vermicelli.

Yay for potatoes!

Yay for potatoes!


In the round

In the round

My photos of the paella we were served do not do it justice. But the seafood and chicken one I tried, the proteins were juicy and not overcooked. The rice also still had a little crunch.

The final course is a selection of desserts including rice pudding and crema catalan (a Spanish creme brulee).

This is meant to be served between two people and is perfect for date night as it’s intimate yet gives a good grounding in the menu. It comes with a jug of sangria (you can choose white or red) for QR900.

As I said earlier, El Faro has my vote for the best new restaurant in Doha. Not everyone agrees with me I have heard mixed reviews from other diners who were perhaps expecting a different experience. I thought hard about this….to me this is authentic southern Spanish cuisine and I even have Spanish friends in Doha who attest to this. Head Chef Raul Cob is not only one of the most social media friendly in Doha, he is also clearly passionate about his food and this shows through.

For those unsure, this is the perfect primer – all the big its and a couple of curve balls to keep you guessing.

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The Details:

Chef’s Choice Menu

El Faro, Marsa Malasz Kempinski, The Pearl Qatar

QR900 for two including a jug of sangria

Tel: +974 4035 5555

*Life on the Wedge was a guest of El Faro but views are my own

El Faro - Marsa Malaz Kempinski Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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