La Tasca at Barclaycard Arena

Spanish food seems to be growing in popularity in Birmingham. From the dons of tapas Don Diego in Sutton Coldfield, to new kids on the block Rico Libre in Digbeth, Spanish food seems to be on everyone’s lips, and national brand La Tasca has chosen now to return to Birmingham with its trendy new restaurant at the Barclaycard Arena.

With a menu consisting of tapas, Iberico pork, fresh Paella, fresh fish and 14 different Sangrias, it promises to be a taste of the Med here in Brum. I headed to their launch event last night to get a taste for myself.

The restaurant peeks out from the Barclaycard arena and overlooks the canals, with a small outdoor dining area for sunny evenings. There are wine barrels decorating the walls, traditional terracotta sangria jugs lined up behind the bar and lots of natural wood to give it a rustic feel.

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Straight off the bat we were offered complimentary Sangria which was refreshing and fruity, and it wasn’t long before the canapes started making their way around. There was an impressive selection, including tortilla with roquito pepper and anchovy, black pudding & chorizo, goats cheese & honey and parma ham with manchego.

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Each of the canapes tasted delicious, they were big mouthfuls so some were a bit awkward to eat, but each really tasty. The staff were super generous with the food as well, making sure to work the room and offer the food to everyone, even leaving boards on each table where people were chatting to help themselves. Unfortunately they don’t currently have the canapes on their regular menu, but there are plans to introduce them as bar snacks for those wanting a light bite with drinks rather than a full meal.

We were also treated to a sample of their famous Paella, with a huge pan being cooked right in front of us. With tender chicken, squid, prawns, peppers and green beans, the paella really was delicious. It tasted just like I remember from Spanish holidays and I’d definitely be keen to come back and try it out for dinner.

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As well as the friendly and attentive staff, I think the most impressive thing about La Tasca is that since they’ve been under new management, they’ve converted from 85% frozen food to 85% fresh, the remaining frozen 15%  is ice cream! There’s also 20 gluten free options on the menu to try and broaden their offering.

I was impressed with the snapshot of the food, the atmosphere was relaxed and casual which is just what you want for after work drinks and dining. There was even a lovely goody bag with Paella rice, pimenton and extra virgin olive oil to take home.

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I’ll have to reserve full judgement until I’ve been for dinner, but I’m impressed so far.

Salud!
Cx

 

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