It isn’t often that we get this excited about a new restaurant opening, but from the moment we read of José’s new venture many weeks ago, we could not wait to be among the many who would sample his dishes from the moment the doors opened.
This is Pizarro’s third offering and the first of his to be in a part of the city that we wouldn’t have expected. Nestled amongst other great names like Franco Manca and Yautacha, the restaurant takes pride of place in the newly renovated Broadgate Circle, just behind Liverpool St Station.
One great thing about this place is that you can reserve a table, something that is a rareity and with being in the city, we feel, a necessity. We arrived early and our table was ready. The dining room is small with the focal point being the long bar with stools so you can see the chefs at work. But when there is more than 4 of you, a table is a must. We were kindly told we had the table for 2 hours and were then given time to look over the menu.
We had already done ample research on what to order so we right ahead and picked a portion of the Prawn Fritters with Saffron Aoili, the Croquetas ‘Caseras’ (House croquettes, which change daily – We had White Crab) and Pan con Tomate. Unfortunately they did not have any Padron Peppers which we were disappointed about.
The Prawn Fritters, WOW. Hand-minced coarsely, these were succulent, on point with flavour and just sublime. Next the White Crab Croquetas. Again how Croquetas should be, crisp on the outside and gooey on the inside. We loved every bite. The fresh bread with tomatoes. garlic and olive oil was refreshing and light compared to the deep flavours of the the previous two dishes.
We moved onto choose a few small plates: Sautéed heritage root vegetables with Monte Enebro cheese and black olive dressing, Ibérico pork meatballs in tomato & orange sauce, Asparagus grilled on the plancha with fried duck egg & Romanesco sauce and a side salad. All three dishes were equally delicious for different reasons, the Asparagus was tender with the sauce adding a hint of heat, the meatballs crumbled in the delicious rich sauce and the Roasted root vegetables were firm, with their sweetness cleverly balanced by the acidic cheese and black olive dressing.
We knew we had to save room for dessert has we had seen several pictures of a certain one in particular that we just had to try. Chocolate with olive oil & salt, with toast. This took us back to when were were kids and we would eat Nutella sandwiches in the park. A clever adult version with dark bitter chocolate cut with the sea salt was just amazing. To accompany it we sampled the Almond cake, pistachio ice cream, which was a refreshing counter part to the chocolate.
We are so glad that we were able to visit this Spanish haven before the city masses begin to flood it. We cannot wait to go again, to sample more dishes, or just to sit and watch the kitchen at work whilst sampling some wine, ham and cheese, the true Spanish way.
36 Broadgate Circle, London, EC2M 1QS