I took my sister there for her birthday a few months ago. Our waiter forgot to bring us bread, the food took too long, and when he did serve us, he was a bit messy. I don t know if it was because he was in a rush, or just not paying attention to what he was doing. We left him a tip, of course, but it reflected the service we received. He had the NERVE to come after us on our way out, questioning his tip. The people near us were looking at us like we were leaving without paying. It was unprofessional and unpleasant and we will NEVER go there again.
We went to Pepin on Saturday, July 25th, 2009 to eat and have a fun night of salsa dancing (a different experience). We were extremely dissappointed!!! The food was terrible and way way way overpriced. The tapas menu was laughable in selection and price as well. We felt like we were more in a cafe eating an OK lunch. Of course we ordered Sangria, which was like drinking fruit punch, not good at all. The lighting does not make for a romantic night in any way. We had to ask the waiter to please turn the lights dimmer as they were so bright in our eye's. 10:00 p.m. is when the dancing starts. They were not set up. There were still empty tables on the dance floor. The Dj's seemed unprepared. We finally had had enough and left around 11:00. Obviously the owners need to visit Latin America to get more of an idea of what to offer their customers. There are better places to go in Phoenix, don't waste your money or your time here, you'll regret it.
Jodi & Adam
My husband and I were very disappointed with our evening at Pepin. We are from Las Vegas and were excited to try something that we don't have there. After reading some reviews, we decided on Pepin. We arrived to an empty dining room with the exception of couples getting ready for dancing lessons. We thought this might be a sign but decided to go ahead with our dinner. Our first waiter seemed preoccupied and almost annoyed. Our appetizer was unappealing. The sangria was O.K. We did enjoy watching the Salsa dancing lessons while we waited for our dinner. A watery and unbalanced caesar salad came next. My husband ordered the veal. The small amount of meat was good but was surrounded by a thick layer of fat. I ordered the paella. The rice was a little crunchy and the shrimp was overcooked. Our bill came to 95 dollars after tip. We've never minded splurging on a nice meal but left feeling very unsatisfied.
I was born in Spain and I lived in Scottsdale for 12 years, and now San Francisco. Safe to say, I know good Spanish cuisine.
Pepin's food is authentic and tastes the same as my grandma from Spain would cook.
Go there, you'll like it.
Since Bodega Bistro closed, we were looking for a great, authentic Paella. We've heard good things about Pepin and were excited to go. Unfortunately, we will NEVER go again. Plan on spending quite a bit of money on food and drink. A pitcher of Sangria was $32, and it was OK, nothing to hurry back for. Lacking in the alcohol too. It was more or less like drinking cool-aid. The Tapas, very good, very pricey. The ENTREMESES VARIADOS (Meat and Cheese tray) was a little small, but tasty. The meat was so thinly sliced, you could see through it. The ANCAS DE RANA (Frog Legs) were outstanding. At $9 for 4 of them, I would get a couple orders because you will fight for them. The CROQUETAS DE ARROZ NEGRO (Croquetas with lobster sauce) at $14 was not worth the four pieces you get. The PAN CON TOMATE ( Cured ham melted manchego cheese & tomato on a crusty toasted bread) was worth fighting over too. Now the really BAD. Paella was horrible. The chorizo looked like it was cut from a Slim Jim (the jerkey found at Circle K's.) Pencil thin and lacking in taste. The Chicken was so dry and tasteless you didn't know if you were chewing cardboard or carpet. Calamari was cooked good. The only used enough Saffron in the rice to give it color, there was NO taste to the entire dish. Having made good Paella for years, several times throughout the meal I wanted to go back to the kitchen and school them. We ended up leaving more then half our plates there, no reason to bring it home and put ourselves through that again. Also, the price of $28 for the Paella - that is PER PERSON! How overpriced is that! It doesn't state that, and most other resturants we've had Paella at have it at about $35 or $40 for 4 people. One of our group had the MAR Y MONTAÑA, which was a couple medallion size tenderloin (meaning, two or three bites) and four shrim. They cover the rest of the plate with Saffron COLORED, not flavored rice. Drop another $32 for that. On top of all of this, it is loud. The flamenco dancers and the musicians pound their shoes on a wooden stage and then amplify it though the sound system. Don't go during this time and expect to even be able to converse with your friends. It goes on and on and on and you wish they would just finish. I would have paid them double what they were making to get them off the stage earlier. When asked if we wanted coffee or dessert, we just begged for the check and wanted to leave. Total cost for the night was a little over $200 for four people.
I am from Spain and I have been living in USA for 12 years and the best spanish restaurant that you can find in this country is Pepin. Owned is from Spain and that is why, well and so many other reasons. Everything is authentic and food is the same as I had growing up in Spain, the flavor of my grandma's recipes. I am in Texas now and I do miss you.... I can't wait to be back to AZ to eat there. I always feel like in home at Pepin is not only the food and the flamenco dancer; is just.... the whole thing.
Rafa, Thank you to keep it real.
Pepin has a lot of potential but unfortunaly it falls short. The biggest problem with this restaurant is the food. First of all the tapas are not authentic. If you are looking for authentic spanish tapas look somewhere else ( and please let me know where to find some in Phoenix ). If you dont care about authentisity and you are just looking for good tapas also look somewhere else. The croquetas are not very good, neither was the empanada or the jamon serrano! Now how in the world do you screw up jamon serrano? Well add sogy bread and melted cheese! I recommend Sol y Sombra in DC Ranch. Its not very authentic but at least the food is good. I am sorry Pepin, I really hope you change your menu because you have great potential. Have the owner take a trip to Madrid and bring back some recepies.
I went there when I was in town for only two days and had heard that it was the place to find an authentic mix of latin music to dance to. I got there after 10 pm on a Sat. night and within an hour the place was jumping. I had a great time and everyone was very nice. The men knew how to dance - and you just can't beat that :)
I didn't eat there, so I can't comment on the food - but the dancing is top notch. Go there to cut loose and practice your salsa (and merengue and cumbia and cha cha...etc.) There is a great mix of people from all different cultures, I was very comfortable and didn't feel as if I was standing out.