An innovative restaurant

On Summer days like this one (40C-100F) few people want to fill their bellies at lunchtime. In fact the belly doesn’t even ask to be filled. On Summer nights, however, it’s a different story.

I was once eating an enjoyable lunch in the local Italian restaurant and I mentioned to Toni the owner that my friend and I were the only people in that day. “Atacamos por la noche”, was his reply.

“We attack at night”.

Sounds strong I know, but Toni is a sharp businessman and he knows his customers well; he knows they much prefer eating at night. And during this economic ‘crisis’ – now into its sixth year I am told by a local waiter – Toni has been trying out all sorts of innovative ideas.

The only Italian restaurant in Arcos de la Frontera

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Lately he has employed a waitress who used to be part of a local Flamenco group. She also has many contacts in town, and has been instrumental in helping find performers for the new Flamenco shows on Thursday and Saturday nights outside the restaurant.

The shows are designed to bring in more punters of course, and that they do.

It’s no wonder that other bars up here in the Old Quarter are catching on. I am seeing more Flamenco performances in a weekend now than in whole Summers of years gone by.

The message seems to be: in hard economic times, innovate.

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