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Our trip to Granada was supposed to be Michelin-free. After plenty of holidays preoccupied by ‘special detours’ to visit this restaurant and that restaurant (and after taking a lower paid but better job), we thought it best to steer clear of those Michelin stars for a while.

We researched places to have lunch in Córdoba (using this very informed and helpful article) and were very excited about another tour round different bars, trying out different wines, beers and small plates of tasty Andalucian treats. But then we stumbled across El Choco in various online reviews and couldn’t resist. A former Celler de can Roca chef moves back to his home town and sets up his own place to showcase local produce at very reasonable value. EUR 200 for an extensive tasting menu lunch for two people with (plenty of) matching wines.

Unusual wines – eg, a rose that looked like a red. Innovative, modern and inviting courses – truffled egg yolk with oozey, gooey warm potato goodness and Iberian pork with spiced aubergine (absolutely gorgeous but 10% of the size we hoped!) are both standout dishes for me.

Really pleased we visited – even got us out of the hot sun for a couple of hours! We were also delighted that the bathroom included mini toothbrush and toothpaste so we could refresh ourselves after the lavish lunch.

The mosque/cathedral is beautiful and has such a bizarre architectural history. Wandering through the quiet and beautiful streets of Córdoba after lunch – a little drunk from the cava, wines and sherry – made for a perfect day.

I would definitely recommend a day trip from Granada to Córdoba (about 2 hours on the train and EUR50 return) and a lunch at El Choco – great food; interesting insight to modern Andalucian cuisine; and lovely change from the bustling tapas bars!

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