As someone who is thouroughly indecisive and wants to try everything Tapas is pretty well perfect for me. I mean, I like an all you can eat buffet but have a tendency to overdo it so somewhere I still have to make a selection but can choose 4 or 5 things rather than 1 is brilliant!
Of course Tapas is about more than just multiple dishes to share, it’s about good quality fresh ingredients, and it’s about sharing and making food into an event.
Last week those good people at Sauce Comms invited me and several other members of the food blogging cognoscenti to a “Secret Cena” to promote the launch of Phaidon publishing’s new release “The Book of Tapas” by Simone and Ines Ortega. We were told to rendezvous at Borough Market’s Tapas Brindisa and were met by head chef Jose Pizzaro who contributes a couple of recipes in the “guest chef” section of the book.
We had a couple of beers standing in the doorway and getting in people’s way (as the bustling restaurant was doing a roaring early evening trade) eating stuffed olives (when Meemalee wasn’t chucking them over the floor) and other nibbles it still wasn’t entirely clear what the secret part of this evening was set to be.
Once everyone had arrived (I may be forgetting people but our gang definitley consisted of @R_McCormack, @EssexEating @FoodUrchin, @GastroGeek, @MathildeCuisine, the aforementioned @Meemalee and @Bribedwithfood) we were shepherded across the road and on a short walk to where we knew not.
Soon we were walking past a gym and into the courtyard of a rather nice appartment complex, the penny didn’t drop until Jose held open the door and told us his flat was on the third floor.
Yep, that’s right, we were being treated to Tapas at Jose Pizarro’s flat, the way it should be done. He told us that Tapas is about entertaining, about good company, good food and good wine! Never one to argue with this kind of suggestion I was hugely impressed that he would be so open and trusting to complete strangers. It’s something which I think Londoners are getting better at, given the rise of the supperclub and all that but it’s still not something that comes entirely naturally. Jose has lived in London for 11 years so he can be classed as a Londoner but I guess the Spanish hospitality is what shines through!
So, a selection of delicous hams and cheeses, a stunningly moist and light tortilla a chorizo paste and some bread got us started and while we mingled in the lounge and around the table it sunk in where we were. Jose had a couple of assistants helping to cook the warm dishes, the chorizo in red wine sauce was so moreish and the plump prawns and juicy scallops just sensational. English Asparagus is the best apparentley and it was served hot.
With such sparking company and excellent food we could barely fail to have a great time, hanging out on the balcony and enjoying wonderful hospitality.
I didn’t take any photos – didn’t quite seem right in someone’s flat but here’s what the book looks like (if you haven’t got your glasses on and everything is a little blurry)…
I’m going to try the vegetable tortilla recipe later I think..
Next post I shall be attempting to even up picture/words ratio since I think I’m going to heavy one way or another at the moment.. (That’s called deconstructing..)