Solera, E53rd, Friday night had a few stellar tapas. Expensive, so helpful to know what's the best. Here, from ace to deuce:
Piccillo peppers stuffed with ground rabbit and pistacios, with a reduction sauce and a little pureed parsnip (?) on the side. Get this.
Calamari, cut like little kites, not rings, so did not shrink. Very tender yet crisp and not greasy, with a spicy aoli. Very good. The cut makes a difference.
Empanada of the day. Never had fresher. Crisp crust, juicy inside. Mix of beef and pork, mildly spiced, almost like a great pasty.
Three cheese plate--manchego, a chevre, a hard cheese like gruyere, a little quince paste, some chutney, bread. The bread was hard, but the cheese, though not adventurous, were well kept, good portions.
Marinated anchovies. Tangy and above average, big portion, nice firm fish.
Marinated olives, lot of garlicky olives, but not special.
The staff's English is limited, so discussing wine was a comedy, but we were happy with his selections. Had lots of food for three people.
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