If there is a restaurant that writes the history of Tarragona cuisine in capital letters, it is the Celler de l’Arbocet. We can enjoy its cuisine since 1979, the year in which a couple of lovers of gastronomy decided to open a restaurant in the cellar of the family home that Grandma Carme had in the small town of d’Arbocet. Until today, when Joan, who represents the third generation, offers us all that heritage, essence and tradition in her own home in Riudoms. Many years and many changes that have led Celler to become one of the gastronomic references in the region, validating for the third consecutive year the ‘sun’ awarded by the fuel guide.
Entering El Celler is like being transported into a world of ‘caliu’, where talking about comfort is an understatement, where any of the three available spaces offers a unique feeling of well-being, made up of a main dining room with a fireplace for around 35 diners, with a pair of reserved; an upper floor for eight more guests; and a terrace with four tables that reopens after being closed for a couple of years, with a new space and several surprises that Joan has prepared.
Attended by a team worthy of the best seats, we face the daily menu that is offered for sixty euros with drinks not included, leaving aside a menu in which local products predominate, both from the sea and from the garden. We start with a small selection of entertainment made up of a tasting of DO Siurana oils, a white prawn from L’Ametlla, a grilled croquette with romesco sauce, a chanterelle carpaccio and some chick peas with black ‘butifarra’. Appetizers that are undoubtedly a true declaration of intent and warn us of the celler’s philosophy: proximity and temporality at its best.
For sweet tooths
For starters we tasted a couple of dishes, the first a mixture of mushrooms with prawns from La Ràpita and artichoke ‘chips’; and the second a traditional roast cannelloni to which a bechamel made with natural truffle was added, no substitutes.
And for the main course, a large portion of grilled wild turbot with a side of vegetables harvested from the property’s gardens. Highlight the fresh piece from our coast, cooked to its point in which the aromas of the coals bind perfectly. Fantastic fish and better cooking.
For dessert and continuing with the craft, a traditional milana of cream with burnt yolk and biscuit ice cream. Confectionery made in the workshop daily to satisfy the sweet tooth.