Restaurant El Lince, The chef and entrepreneur of La Taqueria in Madrid, Javi Estévez, has just launched his second enterprise there. The second establishment, El Lince, strives to provide a fresh menu that is easygoing but expertly prepared with the same zeal and love as the first, which is a tribute to the offal produced by the inventiveness of haute cuisine. Estévez, who takes great pride in being a Madrilenian or “cat” (as true Madrilenians are known), works as a traditional recipe menu (croquettes, Gildas, or salad) without losing sight of offal, of course. So, for the traditional “cats” and those who want to feel like them for a while, El Lince is now available at Príncipe de Vergara 289.
Both the past and the potential future of El Lince are fascinating. Estévez chose the name of the establishment, or more precisely, the name chose Estévez, as there had previously been a restaurant here by the same name (“El Lince-Casa Avelino”) that also served offal. The chef stumbled upon an intriguing coincidence. Even the neon sign that advertises the name was retained by him. The chef fell in love with the restaurant the moment the former owner showed him photos from when he owned it decades before. Small decorative elements, beyond the emblematic sign and the dark colors, give this touch to the tavern. If there are people, it can be noisy. You have to take that into account, but after all, that’s what we want: a popular and relaxed atmosphere. It has a bar and three rooms with a handful of tables. Better to book.
The Menu of Restaurant “El Lince,”
The other two cornerstones of the restaurant are Nagore Arregui, the bartender, who has a clear aptitude for mixology, and Adrián Collantes, who has already worked with Estévez for six years at La Taqueria. Starting this second business was also motivated by the team’s confidence. Arregui has done most of the renovation and decorating on her own (she was in charge of bringing the light back in and insisted on removing layers to reveal the original façade), giving the space a little of its spirit. There is still no well-defined drinks menu, but things are starting. They want to test these recent openings for the customer’s tastes. But with Arregui’s ingenuity, we have to anticipate some magic.
And now we are going to eat. Whole portions or half portions can be ordered. They are dishes served to share. From La Taqueria, they brought a dish: tripe, thigh, and nose stew, and their usual suppliers, by the way. The rest is mostly new. Let’s start with offal. When he became interested in her when he was working at El Mesón de Doa Filo, he thought she was an interesting subject to explore. At El Lince, we can try semi-boned lamb’s feet with tripe sauce, grilled pig’s ears with brava sauce, lime, and tagine, garlic lamb sweetbreads with egg yolk, celeriac, and snow peas, or breaded lamb brains with lime mayonnaise and chives.
The spoon dishes are also protagonists and will change according to the season: lentils simmered with vegetables, Iberian pork tongue, and foie gras in escabèche, or pochas simmered with vegetables and piparras. There are also a number of sausages and cold meats, such as the cecina with almonds or the chicharron pork with lemon oil and green onions. Among the must-haves are the spicy mayonnaise recipe and mushroom duxelle railway brioche, the surprising Russian salad pigeon, the cod tacos with citrus mayonnaise sauce, tomato, and basil sauce, or the duck rice mayonnaise with duck breast and chipotle.
Restaurant El Lince, If you fancy something more than fish, you have to try the Garlic Squid with Ink Sauce and Wild Fried Rice. The occasional salad, such as veal tongue marinated in beef liver mousse. And, finally, some desserts like crispy brioche french toast with the best lemon ice cream and some unusual strawberries with cream cheese streusel and red fruit coulis.
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