🍃 Vibes and Ambiance
After having tried Spanish fusion at the Spanish Diner, I know I had to explore the cuisine more and so next up on my Restaurant week roster was Socarrat, a lowkey Spanish bar in Chelsea, famous for their Tapas and Paella. I have never had a paella before in my life so this is definitely an interesting experience. The staff of the bar was also very welcoming and I think this definitely complements the homey vibe of the bar.
For starter: Gambas Al Ajillo
For starter, I had the Gambas Al Ajillo, which is sizzling shrimp served with olive oil, garlic and guindilla pepper. This dish is essentially sizzling shrimp swimming in olive oil. The garlic and olive oil definitely adds a depth of flavor that complements the shrimp. The sizzling heat of the pan allows the shrimp to be cooked evenly but not overly done resulting in a tender, savory and juicy taste profile.
Main: Paella Arroz Negro
As Socarrat is famous for their Paellas offerings, I figured for the main course I’ll try my first Paella ever here. Paella comes from the name of the cooking utensil, which is the special flat round pan used here. Traditionally, the paella is cooked over woodfire and you eat directly from the pan as well. The Paella Arroz Negro I’m having tonight features shrimp, calamari, white fish, scallops, piquillo peppers with the squid ink sofrito as its base. The restaurant manager also comes over to let me know the correct way to eat the dish: using a utensil to scrape on the bottom of the rice to get all of the flavor while mixing it up with the additional side hot sauce to maximize the flavorful profile. The dish was very tasty and an absolute recommend.
For dessert, we have the traditional classic Spanish Flan. I have no additional notes outside of this was the perfect way to wrap up my Spanish dinner experience.
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