Dining, Cocktails & A Lively Singles Social Scene
When you dine at Mundaka in Carmel, CA, it’s about more than the food.
It’s equally about the experience.
Mundaka, tucked into a corner off San Carlos Street between Ocean and 7th Ave., is quite a find. It’s one of the most social restaurants in the Monterey area, starting with its menu.
It’s all tapas, and that always makes it easy to mingle with other singles at the next table. At tapas restaurants, you’re never stuck for good conversation; you simply lean over to the people seated next to you and say, “hey, that looks interesting, what is that,” as you point to the menu.
For this reason, Mundaka is also what PubClub.com describes as a “position restaurant.”
And that means you need to be in the right position to have those conversations. Being at a table next to other singles – or heck, just a fun couple – increases your chances for a socially-rewarding experience. Another table over and you’re likely an observer.
No worries, though, because the food is entertainment enough. The speciality cocktails help with the mood, too, and so does a DJ that plays hip Euro-style music Wednesday thru Saturday nights.
To top it all off, like an aperitif, are classic movies showing on a wall. You’ll find yourself watching them almost subconsciously between bites. And when the Wilie E. Coyote cartoons are playing, they can become a focal point of attention.
Food Review: The Mundaka Menu
As for the food, it’s creative to say the least. Chef Brandon Miller has plates that include duck and truffle pate (Pate, $7.50); mussels, oven dried tomatoes and saffron cream (Mejillones, $12.50) and warm scallop and potato salad with bacon and a poached egg (Huevos Rotos, $11.50).
PubClub’s favorite item is Hamburguesa, a mini lamb burger with the best string fries you’ll ever have; they are topped with truffle salt ($7.50). We also recommend Albondigas (chorizo meatballs, clams and saffron couscous, $9.50) and Bomba (house made sausage, mashed potatoes and mojo rojo, $6.50).
Mundaka Bar Scene & Cocktails
Wash it all down with sangria (we prefer the red, the white is more like a light mojito and contains rum, $11.50).
The other winners from the 10-item cocktail menu are the margaritas (called the El Trailero it’s invigorating and contains orange juice, $13.50) and for bourbon lovers the L’arbusto with Maker’s Mark, huckleberry shrub, grapefruit juice and ginger syrup ($11.50) is the perfect mix of a speciality drink.
Since it’s hard to leave this setting, just hang arond for a while. By about 10 p.m., a couple dozen mid 20’s-and-up fun folks from the area arrive to to soak up the scene and listen to the DJ. Some are drinking brews out of a hookah, a large beer beaker.
This goes on until midnight, when Mundaka closes. But then everyone goes next door to Ody’s Tavern, the dive bar with a fun vibe and great-looking bartenders.
MUNDAKA RESTAURANT DETAILS
Location: San Carlos Street between Ocean and 7th Ave.
The Restaurant: Tapas plates with 30 items ranging in price from $6.50 to $19.50. Speciality cocktails include white and red sangria and margaritas for $11.50-13.50. DJ plays evenings Wednesdays-Saturdays.
Phone: (831) 624- 7400