I have died and gone to heaven. I'm not usually prone to spiritual exultation but that was my first thought after my first bite of food at this restaurant. Maybe I'm connecting to all the spirits of pilgrims past who journeyed here for the Camino de Santiago, seeking complete absolution so they could ascend to heaven with an untainted soul. Maybe it's because our accommodation used to be a Catholic convent. Maybe it's because none of us imagined we'd have our best meal of this trip to date in this religious city of Galicia.
Casa Marcelo offers Japanese tapas of the best kind, taking advantage of Galicia's renown for amazing seafood. It's located on Rua das Hortas, a mere stone's throw away from Praza do Orbradoiro. Casa Marcelo is surprisingly cosmopolitan in this quaint UNESCO World Heritage town of cobblestoned streets.
We were so affected by this gastronomic event that even my teetotaler mum had a divine intervention and ordered a glass of wine claiming she just had to drink something that matched the bounty on her plate. If this is the Way of St James, then I may turn into a pilgrim yet.
Casa Marcelo has a funky and modern look with a long communal table as well as a chef's table fronting the open kitchen. It is owned by Marcelo Tejedor who is a chef himself. The staff were friendly, relaxed and attentive. I tried to get a photo of head chef Martin Vazquez but he refused to have a photo by himself insisting he will only have photos taken with the entire team. He gets 5 stars from me just for that!
Speaking of stars, this is one of the best-value Michelin starred restaurant I've been to. The 3 of us had 8 courses, 6 glasses of wine plus water and bread and the bill was only 136 euros.
So if you happen to be in Santiago de Compostela, make this restaurant part of your pilgrimage and have a buen Camino.