Disclaimer – I’m really sorry for the quality of the photos and how I’m presenting them here – there’s very little wifi and I don’t have the patience to set up photos properly, so I take a lot of them and hope some look presentable! I’ll do some collages and update once home, but right now, I’d rather be playing with the boys ;)
Last time we came to Levante, in June, we had a real hit and miss experience with the food because our boys were fussing non stop over what they would agree to eat at each meal, so it took a lot of the enjoyment out of it for both Lovely Bloke and me. And now that we’re here partially as reviewers and partially under our own steam, I feel like I should be documenting all sorts of things about this holiday, not least the food, because it’s lovely! And also, because we are taking a very different approach to it from a food perspective, so we are all enjoying it much more…
It’s really important, to me, that I’m truthful when I write a review of any kind so I’m going to start by sharing Lovely Bloke’s take on this – he says that the food is very good, but not as good as some of the hotels he’s stayed in whilst Skiing. Please note that he’s used to 5 star plus all the way – so anything other than a butler delivering hand rolled, freshly cooked to order whatever, is going to be deviating from his idea of heaven on holiday. He said I shouldn’t put his thoughts in, but I wanted to be honest about his take on it. He still manages a starter, two mains and pudding each night – I’m only managing soup sometimes, and then mains. I usually have melon for pudding as I can’t fit any more in!
At breakfast, it’s half buffet and half freshly cooked to order food. There’s a really kind and smiley man whose sole job is to make enough pancakes and waffles to keep everyone moving in the queue. And there is a queue for them – every morning. They are lovely. William has two pancakes, with a blob of chocolate sauce on a separate plate. Elliott has cereal and bacon whilst Lovely Bloke goes to the omelette station and someone else – usually the same lady – makes him a cheese omelette every morning. I have a mix of food – today I had a pancake and some melon, yesterday was beans and bacon and a hash brown. There is a fabulous range of fresh fruit – all prepared and chopped ready to go so there’s no fiddling at the table. Elliott goes to collect four glasses and fills them with apple juice from the machine and after that’s all done, we’re set for the day.
At lunch, we go to the Pan Asian restaurant on site. It’s literally next to the beach pool. This is where William achieves nirvana each day – apparently their prawn crackers are the “best ever”. I usually have yakitori chicken and the boys have what they refer to as “chicken nuggets” and noodles with salad. Lovely Bloke tries something different most days. Last time we came – in June – we ate at the other pool bar most lunchtimes – they do pizza to eat in or take away, and a range of chips and burgers type stuff that children love. The latter is more grab and go, whilst the former is more leisurely – I think the view helps facilitate that as it’s right on the beach and you can see everything that’s happening.
Children’s dinner is served from 5.15pm – 6.15pm. There’s always plain spaghetti, pasta and chips, which can be eaten with salad, tomato pasta sauce, cheese or ketchup. The vegetable and salad selection is good – William has a plate of cucumber at tea, because it’s not been mixed in with other things! Children’s tea also has plain pork chops, fillets of meat and sometimes fish. The boys stick to the same thing most times and that’s fine with us – so long as something is being eaten, we’re quite relaxed about what it is. And without fail, there’s ice cream for pudding.
Dinner is from 7.30pm – 9.30pm and you can choose as to whether your children eat with you or do children’s dinner. Our boys have done both – children’s dinner and then something more at 7.30pm before going to kids club for the games and film night. We have found that we need to feed them on an ongoing basis – they are on the go from the moment they wake up to the moment they go to sleep.
There are themed food nights, and they are good – we like them. I’m a big fan of their vegetarian food. Richard likes the rabbit, veal and says the range of meats are good and the sauces are good as well. There’s a whole area for different kinds of salad and another with great appetisers. The latter usually have a mix of fish in them and people can’t get enough of them – they love it. I love to see the different things on the grill area – there’s whole cooked chickens, pork and lots of stuff that I don’t recognise but tastes lovely. I usually get a small plate to start with and test things before going on to a second plate for mains, with more of the things I’ve liked the most.
Lovely Bloke likes the pastry and nest of puddings. I like the melon – it’s always a lovely way to finish the meal. There’s ice cream for adults dinner as well and there is always coffee on the go. Lots of people have a bottle of wine with dinner and then take it to the outdoor terrace. I prefer a pimms and lemonade whilst Lovely Bloke has a gin and tonic.
For me, whilst the food is lovely, it’s taken to the next level because of the attention to details that comes with it – children’s plates and cutlery, staff everywhere to help you with whatever you can’t find, an abundance of all the food and a relaxed approach to everything. We never feel like we need to move on and there’s always space for everyone.
The ‘Captain’ at breakfast is usually a woman who is a bit quieter but keeps everyone moving at a pace whilst the evening ‘Captain’ is a big, friendly, enthusiastic bloke – we don’t understand what he’s saying but we don’t need to – the staff are everywhere, doing everything and it’s great to see them all working as a team. They even have dedicated tables laid out at 7.30pm for “Kids tea” which is for tweens and older children, and “Indy” meals as well – at breakfast and for dinner. They are great ways for the children and teenagers to be independent but still use the meal times as a way to get to know other people without parents hovering too close by as to offend them!
What’s the food like when you go away? How important is it to you? Is it just one small part of your adventure or do you want to try things you’ve never had before?