226 W 23rd St, New York, NY | Directions 1001140.744505 -73.996970
Neighborhoods: Chelsea, Midtown
BEST/AUTHENTIC SPANISH (SPAIN) RESTAURANT! – Ok, THIS IS NOW OUR FAVORITE RESTAURANT! We use to have another restaurant as our go to restaurant for authentic food from Spain & Spanish seafood - prior to us discovering this gem! We have been going to this restaurant and cocktail lounge for OVER a MONTH STRAIGHT of weekends!! There are SEVERAL factors that make THIS restaurant GREAT (and owners and other restaurants can take notes and follow this plan IF they want the same). First off food being great is an obvious given. Each time we have been there we have gotten a different dish. The menu itself is EXTENSIVE; you could probably go here a year straight and still not have gone through the entire thing. The portions are FAMILY STYLE, you can order most items (such as paella, steaks,etc...) and split them between a minimum of two people. If you want, you can go there and sit at the cocktail bar and eat or just order appetizers at the bar or sit at a table and do "tapas style". The pricing is very reasonable. The second factor that makes this restaurant excellent (other owners, please listen up and take notes...) is the MANAGER! THAT is a HUGE key point; hiring and having a manager that CARES as if they owned the restaurant personally themselves. Along with that is the third factor and that is the managers "people skills" to hire and train the CORRECT staff (waiter, hostess, chef's, busboys, etc...) to do the job. The ENTIRE staff operates as one solid unit - family! They do there work extremely well and you can see they are allowed to interact with the patrons especially the regulars, and most of all have fun while still doing their job. Those who don't work out, are not kept on the payroll to do a half ass job. Everyone is on top of their game there. If there were ever a Manager Of The Year award for restaurant managers, Jose the manager of this fine establishment would be the first manger I would give the award to hands down! Luis, our waiter on our first night at the restaurant is a gentleman and a true professional - and we told him that after dinner that first night. We seek him out every time we go there for dinner and look to be seated in his section. Now I turn to the bar scene/cocktail lounge, it is lively, you can strike up a friendly conversation with anyone around you. Many regulars of the restaurant and area come in and have a drink or eat their dinner or appetizers at the bar. The best thing about the bar, is - the bartender - Christian! A person who worked his way up through the ranks to his current position. He is a personable, fun and interesting employee.Whether we are eating dinner and then finished or waiting on a table or simple come in to have cocktails and a/or appetizers we always sit at the bar and talk with him. He makes great frozen drinks using FRESH ingredients (example: strawberry daiquiri/margarita's) or ANY mixed drink including some interesting concoctions that he has "invented" himself and made for us. The sangria is the BEST of ANY of the Spanish restaurants that we go to - and MOST reasonably priced! We have so far celebrated our "meeting anniversary" (the day we met - wedding anniversary is next...along with all birthdays and holidays such a s Christmas Eve/New Years Eve dinners, etc...). This place has been open since 1930 (81 YEARS!) - they MUST be doing something RIGHT! Well to wrap up, we will be there for the fifth weekend straight to have dinner and then go next door to The Chelsea Room to party for the rest of the night! THIS PLACE IS TOP SHELF!!!!!
Phillip & Lisa
Bad Service - Hostess / Waitress are LIARS! – I never write reviews but I registered here just so that I can let people know of my experience here tonight. Simply put, food was ok, sangria/drinks were good, service was EL TERRIBLE!
My gf and I arrived on time for our reservation. I told the hostess the name the reservation was under and she asked us to stand by the side while she sorted things out at the front (there was a large number of frustrated customers waiting for their respective tables as well). A few minutes had passed and we then realized she could not locate our table. When she finally got a hold of waitress and informed her that we had arrived, the waitress told us our table was in the back and we could find our party there. We walk to the back but couldn't spot anyone from our party so we came back telling her the situation. In that MOMENT she craftily came up with this story that our party arrived early, but decided to leave and thus cancel our reservation. I called my friends immediately and they told us they HADN'T arrived yet but they were 2 minutes away. I let the waitress know that she was wrong about our party and she then makes up another LIE on the spot saying we in fact NEVER made a reservation. I told her that's not true but she insisted it "wasn't written" on her paper. I then asked to see her paper and took a quick glance. I POINTED to our reservation; it clearly showed our NAME and TIME but for some reason it was crossed out. Knowing she was busted, she then apologizes and says she gave our reservation away to another group but she'd seat us as soon as another table opens up.
If you're going to lie, at least try to come up with something believable. It was like talking to a 3 year old who was standing next to a spilled glass of milk trying to deny any wrongdoing.
Oh yea, I saw the hostess also pick up some mints that had fallen on the doormat and place them back in the serving bowl. Granted they were wrapped but considering there was a huge bowl of mints, was it really necessary to save that 1 dirty mint?
A crowd packs into this Chelsea restaurant for an extensive menu of Spanish classics and tapas. – In Short
With its festive decor and atmosphere, this unmistakable Spanish restaurant situated below the Hotel Chelsea has been culling regulars for decades. The bar scene encompasses most of the front room, luring after-work drinkers and hotel guests with plates of manchego cheese and pitchers of sangria. Lobster served in green sauce is a favorite from the dining room's seafood-heavy menu. Party-sized portions are de rigueur, and most dishes, especially the popular paella, easily feed more than one.
Old school spot that will never go out of style... – It was one of my friends birthday's and we wanted a good restaurant that wasn't too trendy or pretentious, but was festive and good. For that kind of guy's night out, El Quijote was the perfect place. We were able to get a reservation for 8 the night before and they were very nice as our party took their time getting there. Once we were all there, it only took a few minutes to get our table although the place was pretty packed.
The service from the uniformed waiters was friendly and thorough. The food was all tasty and in ample portions. There's nothing cute here--just real Spanish food and plenty of it. It isn't cheap but considering the quality and quantity, it is a great value. Not a single one of the 8 grown men I was with finished their meals, but every one of us loved it. That said, it's the perfect place to share some appetizers and a main dish. The decor is authentic old New York just like the Chelsea Hotel above.
YUM-O – The food was pretty good. The paella is deelicious. I suggest you order the Marinara Paella con Longosta, it's not as wet as the Valencia Paella. The price is decent too!!! Recommended!
I went with a group of friends and expected ok food and high prices. I was happy to find that the food was reasonably priced and great paella!!! The steaks are huge and a great bargain, but was tasteless. I would not recommend the chicken with garlic because it was overcooked. The Seafood paella with 1/2 a lobster is a bargain, and is really tasty.
User review by lamalinche – The garlic soup tasted strange. The cruttons on it had been fried on stale oil. The paella was a total desgrace: the rice was dry, had no azafrán but tomatoe, the chorizo had been sliced and was the worse you could find, the seafood was overcooked. One good thing: the service had been good and very friendly, though not wise on wine recommendation. Then the check arrived: they had charged us 40 extra bucks out of nothing. Our waiter tried to explain that the house never writes down the alcoholic beverages on the bill (????!!!!). We insisted it was wrong, and of course it was. After long waiting and no longer friendly faces, as I said it was 40 less than they had planned to charge us. We will never again show up our noses there,nor our poor mouths and less our wallet.
Great date! – My date took me to this place for the first time, and I was pleasantly surprised! The decor is not modern/trendy like Taj, but more down to earth, spanish style. The waiters were absolutely fabulously always being attentive such as filling water/sangria. =) The food, I thought was excellent! The paella is HUGe, maybe serving up to 4 people. The seafood paella was great. The appetizers, the most expensive one with a variety of different seafoods, sausages was absolutely, ridiculous, yummy! after the appetizer, I was so full, I couldn't contain myself. The fliet mignon/lobster/shrimp dish was also wonderful, very large portions for this price in NYC. At the end of the mean, i wanted to cry because I was so full. One thing, if you want a medium well, you should ask for medium. If you want medium, ask for medium rare, etc.
NOT good – The vege "paella" consisted of overly boiled vegetables and loose rice- it completely lacked flavor. The museels were okay, but overall this place was very disappointing. Friends had salmon and grouper and no one could enjoy his meal...
great service, great prices. – although some of the dishes were on the salty side,
the prices and portions can't be beat.
the servers,busboys, hostess.
just everyone at the restaurant were all smiles and so down to earth.
we never had to summon our waiter because he took care of things
right away without us having to ask.
really wonderful for large parties.
the entrees takes awhile to come out so try to order
just a really great experience overall.
Sign in with Facebook Sign in with Facebook to see what your friends are up to!
Do you have a review of El Quijote Bar & Restaurant on your blog? If you include the Citysearch image link (shown below) in your post, we'll automatically link to your review from the business profile page. Here's how our Linkback system works:
The Linkback system is free and automatic. It's really that easy.
To link to our business profile page, copy the html below to your web page.