El Pirata (it means The Pirate)
An authentic tapas bar and restaurant in the heart of Mayfair.
For nearly a quarter of a century, El Pirata has been serving tapas to customers including local office workers, South American oilmen, Japanese diplomats, Mayfair hedge fund managers – and the occasional celebrity, like Queen guitarist Brian May and that most famous of modern pirates, film star Johnny Depp.
The secret to El Pirata’s long success is simple: a vast choice of good Spanish food and wine served quickly by friendly waiters in an informal restaurant that feels more Madrid than Mayfair.
Tucked away in a quiet residential street between Piccadilly and Park Lane, and close to the historic site of the bawdy fair that gave Mayfair its name, El Pirata is proud to give its customers exactly what they want.
There is a wide range of food and wine on offer – with more than 60 dishes on the menu from restaurant specials like cochinillo a la traditional (roast suckling pig with potatoes) to tapas classics including boquerones (anchovies in vinegar), patatas bravas (deep-fried potatoes in a chilli and garlic sauce) and pescados y mariscos fritos de rape (deep fried medallions of monkfish). From 12pm -6pm stop by for the menu del dia – unbeatable value at £10.25 per person for two tapas dishes, a basket of bread and alioli and a glass of wine or beer. There are also two set menus : £18.50 and £23.50 each which include up to ten tapas dishes. It’s an offer that is hard to beat anywhere in London. And there are over 140 different wines on the wine list – all of them authentically Spanish.
El Pirata’s location in Down Street is within striking distance of Mayfair’s five-star hotels and also within easy reach of hotels in Knightsbridge and Kensington too.
El Pirata is a Mayfair institution. For those in the know – and around 90 per cent of the restaurant’s customers are regulars – it serves some of the best tapas in London at accessible prices. That’s why it’s always busy. But don’t worry if you haven’t booked, the waiters will usually find you a place at the mirrored bar and keep you happy until a table becomes available.
Lively style and good-value tapas makes for a lot of fun at very reasonable prices for such an expensive area.