Local entrepreneur Subash N, Manskukhani has taken his Indian heritage, fused it with his Puerto upbringing and business know-how and has created a sumptuous palace for eating, drinking and socialising the night away.
Walking down Calle Santo Domingo a couple of months ago I suddenly became aware that something was very different. A striking red and black interior with Ã¼ber chic tables and chairs, a New York style cocktail bar and a mock cliff face, trickling waterfall and smiling Buddha occupied the glass fronted building which last time I looked was selling shoes.
Suan Chill had arrived… full of Eastern promise.
An alluring emporium of kaleidoscopic, neon colours reflecting on embroidered and sequinned upholstery and state of the art bar and restaurant fittings, Suan Chill is offering something a bit different; a tapas bar/restaurant front of house and a chill out bar/party venue back of house.
Gawping around at the myriad of display cases, the busy bar, the eclectic décor and our fellow diners, we have to send the smiling waitress away twice before we finally settle on our choice of food.
We opt for a selection of tapas dishes, some of which sound familiar while others, like the frikenden are culinary strangers to us. As we sip our beers a selection of delicious looking montaditos (lightly toasted bread slices topped with a variety of savouries) arrives at the table next to us and opposite, we overhear someone telling the waiter that the steak he’s just eaten was one of the best he’s ever had. The gastric juices tingle in anticipation.
Within 10 minutes our dishes arrive. Everything is beautifully and artfully presented on white, triangular shaped dinner plates and accompanied by a small salad. First to arrive is a tasty Russian salad, one of the items we’ve ordered which doesn’t deviate from the standard tapas recipe.
Next up is mushrooms stuffed with tartare; half a dozen large, flat mushrooms filled with a tangy tartare sauce which becomes a bit rich by the time I’m finishing my third mushroom. Then comes morcilla de Burgos, a black pudding and rice combination heavily spiced with cumin and accompanied by a dollop of the tartare sauce which is finding its way onto every plate. The papas arrugadas appear next, accompanied by thick mojo sauces; the verde has a lip-smacking kick to it and the rojo is a sweet, tangy delight. Finally, the mysterious frikenden makes an appearance and it turns out to be savoury mini beefburgers accompanied by a crisp, light hash brown and a dollop of the now ubiquitous tartare sauce.
Everything is fresh, tasty, surprisingly filling and a pleasant diversion from standard tapa fare. Suan Chill has given ingredients their own signature make-over, adding some of that sexy Eastern spice and creating a concept which, like the place itself, is delivering something a bit different. My only criticisms are that it could have been hotter and could happily have done without the tartare overdose.
We order coffee and I head off to check out the facilities and the chill out section.
Beyond the bar is an area the size of a small nightclub with its own bar, a DJ platform and several large, private booths, each a different colour combination. The décor is a colourful crossroads of traditional East meets 21st century West. Rows of embossed, sequined poufs and large hookahs sit alongside black vinyl and aluminium surfaces watched over by smiling Buddha images.
The toilets are a contemporary delight in red and black tiling and frosted glass.
I return to enjoy my cappuccino just as Subash is doing a tour of tables, checking with diners before he dims the lights front of house as Suan Chill morphs into its night attire.
Where, when and how:
Suan Chill; Calle Santo Domingo, 8; Puerto de la Cruz. Open every day from 08.00 to 03.00; reservations ““ (0034) 922 37 49 79
Starters (incl tapas) average €5; main courses average €10; sweets average €3.50
Three course menu del dÃa €7 – changes daily.
Free parking at the Plaza Europa car park opposite for customers spending €30 or more and a free taxi home to Puerto de la Cruz, La Orotava or central Los Realejos for customers spending €50 or more.