A little update to my favourite tapas spots. Mainly to include the photo of the rather beautiful Barrafina stuffed courgette flower. When I compiled the list before, I hadn’t made it to Barrafina, but after rather faultless tapas at the second branch just off the Strand, it had to be included. I still love the other places, most for tapas in the Spanish way perched on stools around a bar, or some where you can settle a little longer.
Jose –Jose is tiny, just stools and standing. It’s owned by Jose Pizarro, with his restaurant Pizarro down the road on Bermondsey Street. The menu changes daily depending on what’s good – try and sit at the front, watching the chefs and legs of ham. They have an excellent sherry selection to go with the delicious tapas. You must have a plate of croquetas, and the boquerones (rather giant marinated white anchovies, less scarily fishy than the smaller dark kind).
|My version of Morito's Borani (from their cookbook)|
Morito – The little tapas bar sister of Moro on Exmouth Market, with more of their fantastic Spanish/Moorish food. The menu has tapas favourites along with fragrant, spiced dishes (some things stay, with lots changing seasonally). I usually have the fried chickpeas and the beautifully cerise Borani (beetroot dip with dill, walnuts and feta). The Morito cookbook is also now out, for recreating at home, but missing the buzz of the tiny room spilling out onto the cobbles of Exmouth market.
Salt Yard – I’ve been a number of times, and it’s consistently excellent. There is more of a bar at the top, along with the restaurant seats. The cured meats and cheeses are very good, but try all the other dishes, especially their trademark dish of courgette flowers stuffed with goat’s cheese and drizzled with honey. Try their sister restaurants - Dehesa, Opera Tavern and Ember Yard (which I particularly like).
Copita – Tucked away on D’Arblay street, this is a great spot for a drink and snack when you’re in Soho. For a change try the ajo blanco – the cold almondy, garlicky soup. They often also have churros for something sweet, which will always win me over.
Barrafina – I’ve already mentioned rather splendid courgette flowers and croquetas above, but do try the two at Barrafina (either the Soho stalwart, or the new Adelaide Street addition). The new site has perfect crab croquetas, squidgy inside and crisp outside. Look out for their weekly changing board of specials – this included a delicious plate of asparagus, romesco sauce and manchego last time I went.