Tapas is one of life’s joys. A table full of food, where you can eat as much or as little as you want, full of flavour and variety. Most people share tapas, but I am not most people. Last week I was invited in to review El Borracho De Oro, and I was coming straight from work, I decided to have to a totally self-indulgent meal that I didn’t have to share with anyone!
Walking in to El Borracho makes you feel warm. There are so many touches that are reminiscent of Spain, like the colourful crockery, warm colours and dark wood, and the welcome is just the same.
Despite dining alone, the staff made me feel totally relaxed. From chatting over the bar, to reminiscing about Portugal with one of the waiters over dinner, I felt thoroughly at home, as though among friends.
I grabbed a drink at the bar before going to my table. After a quick look through the cocktail menu, I decided to go with the barman’s recommendation, a Sevillian Daquiri, with Spanish strawberry gin and fresh fruit.
The food menu is full of delicious sounding dishes, split up into sections for meat, fish, eggs and vegetables. Full of familiar dishes like tortilla and croquettas, and some more authentic sounding dishes, I struggled for a while to decide what to have.
In the end, I decided to go for a mix of meat and fish with octopus a la gallega, piquillo pepper stuffed with Spanish black pudding and topped with Manchego, chicken livers in sherry and bread with sobrasada.
I was given some tangy manzanilla olives to nibble on with my drink while I waited for my food, which didn’t take long to start arriving. As everything is fresh, it comes from the kitchen when its ready, rather than being left to sit around while everything else cooks.
The first things to arrive were my bread and the octopus, which I tucked into straight away.
The bread was fresh, toasted until crisp but still satisfyingly chewy. The paprika infused sausage was delicious, not as strong as chorizo, but packed with flavour. The octopus was absolutely delicious, really tender and well cooked with soft potatoes and heaps of paprika.
The peppers and chicken livers didn’t take long to arrive after that. I kid you not, the chicken livers smelt so lovely as they arrived at my table that they attracted the attention of many other diners. The couple next to me actually called the waiter over and ordered some for themselves! The flavour was just as good as the aroma too, rich and earthy with a wonderful sweetness from the sherry.
The portion size was VERY generous too! The piquillo peppers with black pudding and Manchego were so good . Sweet pepper, savoury black pudding and salty cheese made for a gorgeous mouthful.
Onto desserts. If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you’ll know that I indulged in two desserts at El Borracho. I was already pretty full from the tapas, but on the recommendation of my lovely waitress, I got myself a portion of churros with chocolate sauce and a cortado coffee.
So, imagine my surprise when the chef came to my table with this gorgeous looking Crema Catalana!
The chef wanted me to try it, as instead of the traditional vanilla flavour, this Crema Catalana is made with tonka bean, which has a spicy vanilla flavour with hints of cinnamon which worked so well with the smooth, silky custard. It really was delicious.
After that I really was ready to pop, but out came my churros and coffee, and as I hate to waste anything, I gave them my best shot!
I don’t think I’ve ever had bad churros, and these were no exception. Crispy, sugary and lovely. I only managed to eat two of them (the shame!) but they were fab, and the coffee was a great end to the meal, nice and strong to keep me awake!
I had such a lovely time at El Borracho, and I’d love to say I received the VIP treatment because I was blogging, but all the staff were genuinely lovely to everyone dining there that night. From stopping off at tables for a chat, welcoming regulars as though they were old friends and even the chef doing the rounds to say hello to everyone and make sure they were enjoying their food, the whole place is buzzing with such a friendly and welcoming atmosphere, coupled with delicious, homely food.
The only criticism is that there isn’t one on my doorstep in Sutton Coldfield!
My meal and drinks at El Borracho De Oro were complimentary, many thanks to the team there. All opinions are, as always, my own, and I was under no obligation to write a positive review, I simply enjoyed it that much!