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El Molino is a cosy, family-run restaurant situated on bustling Holloway Road, and with its Spanish soundtrack, friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere it feels more like being in Iberia than Islington.

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Restaurant info:

El Molino, 379 Holloway Road, N7 0RN. Tel: 020 7700 4312

Web: www.elmolinolondon.co.uk

Wine: From £11.95

Food: Tapas from £3.70, mains from £4.50

Disabled access: Yes, toilet is small

Children welcome: Yes

We popped in on a Thursday night and found the place fairly busy, with a healthy buzz of conversation and the clink of glasses.

We ordered a jug of sweet sangria and checked out the menu. Though there are plenty of main dishes, El Molino is best known as a tapas bar so we chose a few of those.

Around three apiece is enough, we were told, and I’m glad we didn’t order any more – you would have had to roll me home.

As is the tapas way, they arrived at more or less the same time allowing us to chop and change between the tasty helpings.

Pick of the bunch were the juicy prawns in wine and garlic sauce, which were quite literally finger-licking good.

The creamed mushrooms and spinach were also very good, as were the meatballs in rich tomato sauce.

Our other choices were cooked chorizo, Serrano ham with cheese and beef medallions, all of them very satisfying.

The food came quickly and, even allowing for a Spanish brandy, we were in and out in 90 minutes.

But with the service very friendly and welcoming, it would be easy to enjoy a long leisurely dinner there.

Owner Jose opened El Molino 25 years ago and the place has become something of an Islington institution – with cheap, quality meals like this; long may it continue.

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