Seeing as we’re currently based in L’Estartit on the Costa Brava, it’s far easier and quicker to jump into the car and take a few hours out to visit nearby places. Whether it’s inland or a beach there’s plenty to choose from, even in the midst of winter.
During our time here we’ve lived mostly inland, in Girona, and have explored most of the province. This time we opted for the coastal town of Calella de Palafrugell where we hadn’t been for a very long time. Its handful of charming sandy coves are clustered close together, hemmed in on either side by a much craggier coastline.
With a village feel, boutique shops, restaurants and galleries it has already claimed that chic respect that other coastal spots still aspire to.
This makes it a popular summer destination for well-healed locals and lucky domestic and foreign second home owners. It also hosts one of the most popular and longest running outdoor summer music festivals, Cap Roig.
You’ll find the ‘cami de ronda Llafranc’ to the east of Hotel La Torre, where you can also park if driving. These walking routes are signposted in green, each one with a time duration. This one takes about 15 minutes to reach Llafranc, the next Costa Brava beach resort. Dogs in tow we headed off along the well worn path which hugs the coast, providing spectacular sea views and scary looking cliff edges.
The descent into Llafranc gives one a chance to view the resort in its entirety, with a verdant backdrop of pine forests and the vast expanse of deep blue sea.
Being a sunny Saturday post-Christmas the afternoon temperature just about allows for al fresco dining. Strolling along its pedestrianized seafont all our preferred options had no free outdoor tables, until we reached Nova Pasta. Our luck was in, as we spotted an empty table still bathed in sunlight. Their modern looking long narrow terrace sits next to a shuttered hotel but we had a generous beach view.
It’s one thing to sit down and wait for a menu or to want to place your order if you happen to possess the menu. Daily life here is peppered with numerous encounters where time or punctuality are unimportant. If being laid back and procrastination were college subjects I’d be up there with the best of them. However, waiting to be served is perhaps my achilles heel.
The waiting staff were busily dashing up and down the length of the terrace, seemingly invisible to us. I saw a group of people who’d sat down after us, giving their order. Even with my wife’s disapproving stare I duly sent my daughter inside, with a smile and a confident swagger to hurry things along.
Menus in hand we chose the following; a meat based pizza, a goat’s cheese salad and a pasta dish with mushroom sauce, oh and some home-made meat croquettes to share. Thankfully the wait was noticeably normal, and, in my opinion these types of dishes are hard to muck up. The setting sun and the drop in temperature gave us a hint that it was time to make a move.
Verdict. Nova Pasta’s food offering was just what we’d wanted, and while well executed it was ordinary fare at a good price.
Final bill for 3, included 2 small beers, 2 coffees and a coke, 60€