Last week, in my What I Ate Wednesday post, I mentioned a dinner we had at Brindisa and said I’d be writing a review on it… Well, here it is!
Brindisa is a London chain of Spanish restaurants and shops with about five different restaurants, a shop in Borough Market and a “Food Room” in Brixton. This made me very excited when I got home from Spain due to the anchovies, chorizo and manchego they sold! Next to the shop, under the arches of the railway line, is a little Spanish tapas bar, with high stools by the bar itself and tables nestled in against the curving brick walls of the arches. The light is dim and the windows get steamed up on occasion, but inside is a little oasis of friendly Spanish waiters and barstaff, couples on dates and old friends catching up over numerous plates of jamón.
The menu is large, but all small tapas plates so luckily you can order a huge selection and try everything. There were six of us on a Thursday night and we ordered so many dishes I couldn’t recount them all – blame that on the slightly drunk boys (my job meant that our table was booked for 8.30pm, they had finished work at a normal time and had been in a pub since 5.30!)
Of course, we had lots of plates of jamón and a few cheese platters – a manchego, a soft cheese and a blue cheese – a few dishes of patatas bravas with both a spicy sauce and alioli, delicious meatballs, almonds, olives, little balls of deep-fried goats cheese (their name escapes me now but these were incredible), a tuna dish, anchovies, pan y tomate (think bruschetta), bread with alioli…. And more and more. It was all delicious – I couldn’t get enough alioli or cheese (not together though) and kept picking at both of them long after I was full.
Drinks-wise, the boys drank beer, two of the girls a dry white wine served by the glass, and I was so excited to see they had Agua de Valencia on the menu – the Valencian local drink, their version of sangria, made with cava, orange juice, vodka and gin and absolutely delicious. Like in Valencia, it was only served by the jug but I managed to cajole some friends into sharing.
We ate and drank until our plates were empty, then ordered more food and wine, then more again. The food kept coming, we kept eating and chatting just like the best of Spanish nights. It’s a wonderful restaurant.