he Garcia family restaurant tradition began three generations ago with Pepe Garcia, who started Maxim’s in South Yarra during the 1950s. Today in Windsor tapas bar Garcia & Son, his portrait watches over his son and grandson, John and Nick Garcia. “He’s very much a part of what we are doing,” John says.
It’s no surprise that working as a father and son team is natural for the pair. “I grew up in the business and I grew to love it,” Nick adds.
Garcia & Son is committed to Spanish authenticity. “We wanted to create a place that wasn’t formal but still a restaurant of the old school,” John notes.
John and Nick have created a menu inspired by the tapas bars in Madrid and Barcelona. Chefs Manuel Villegas and Jeremy Stubbs serve specialities including huevos muijol (caviar toast with quail egg), cannelones d'anec (cannelloni of roast duck with béchamel sauce), and almejas con jamon (clams with sherry infused ham).
The restaurant fit out was designed and built by the two men. “The tapas fridge, the cutlery and the cushions are all from Spain,” John explains.
The bar also features a long bench top where guests can relax with a caña of Estrella de Galicia beer after work. “You can come in and have a glass of wine or have a coffee. There’s not an expectation you will book a table,” John says.
Thankfully, the restaurant is reversing the trend of charging mains prices for tapas serves and most tapas are between six to nine dollars. “In Spain, you might come into the tapas bar in the morning and again in the afternoon. It’s an everyday thing,” Nick adds.
Though this tapas bar is only opening in the evenings, and is more of a sit-down affair, this kind of casual Spanish hospitality is sure to local draw diners in for an evening snack.
Garcia & Son
20/2 Maddock Street, Windsor
(03) 9078 5007