Showing posts with label spanish. Show all posts
Showing posts with label spanish. Show all posts

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Diplomatico Rum Tasting and Dinner at Barcelona Wine Bar (South End, Boston, MA)

I recently had the opportunity to taste the line of Diplomatico Rums at a tasting and dinner held at Barcelona Wine Bar in Boston's South End with Diplomatico's master distiller, Maestro Gilberto BriceƱo.
Diplomatico Rum @ Barcelona
Diplomatico was founded in 1959 and adhere to the traditional Venezuelan way of making rum. They have their own yeast strain for fermentation and use sugar cane molasses and honey from sugar cane for their rums. Diplomatico's distillation process differs from most Caribbean countries which use column distillation. Diplomatico uses column distillation for their light rum, copper pot (to get heavy alcohols), and batch kettle for medium alcohols. The copper pot tradition came about because Seagram's used to make whiskey in Venezuela.

Anyway, the rums. We tasted six different rums from Diplomatico.
Diplomatico Rum @ Barcelona

Diplomatico Anejo
This is their youngest product, which is aged up to 4 years and a mix of light and heavy alcohols (which they get from the different distillation processes). The rum itself has a hint of vanilla and with light sweetness. This rum is good for cocktails and a great value at about $15 a bottle!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Smoke, Oil, Salt: A New Spanish Wine Bar on Melrose

A new Spanish wine bar has taken over the old Angeli Caffe spot on Melrose, with a kitchen helmed by Perfecto Rocher (formerly of Lazy Ox Canteen).

We started dinner at Smoke, Oil, Salt with olives amb bitets (olives, toasted almonds, Manchego cheese, $6) - a great starter!

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Followed by a traditional pa amb tomaca il llangonisses (Catalan tomato toast, homemade red and white sausages $6)
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I like the fresh taste of the tomato on Catalan toast, compared to Italian tomato sauce, and the homemade sausages are quite flavorful.

Vegetarians can opt for the truita de carxofes (artichoke omelet, Meyer lemon aioli, $11)
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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Talking Tasting Menu Film Over Dinner at The Bazaar

Food has really penetrated reality TV, and it's making its way into films! After Jiro Dreams of Sushi, Magnolia Pictures is now releasing Tasting Menu, a Spanish film surrounding the last dinner at one of the world's best restaurant in Costa Brava. Sounds El Bulli-like? I had the privilege to dine with the director Roger Gual last week, and I asked him point blank if he was inspired by El Bulli's closing. Surprisingly, he was already working on the script when El Bulli's closing was announced! Funny how life works sometimes. The film will be in theatres this Friday, April 18.

What other dinner in Los Angeles would be more perfect to celebrate this film than a tasting menu at LA's most celebrated Spanish restaurant, The Bazaar? Roger had dined at El Bulli (research for his film. I was my research was as tasty) and immediately recognized Ferran Adria's olive spheres.

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The main characters in the film are estranged husband and wife, Marc and Raquel, who happened to have reservation for the last dinner service at Chakula, the fictional best-restaurant-in-the-world. Neither of them is willing to give up the reservation (neither would I!), so they met again at the restaurant after a year of separation. There's comedic relief from the two potential Japanese investors who will make competing bids for the chef to open a restaurant in Japan, a countess and old friend of the restaurant who is attending dinner with her late husband's ashes, and other characters.
Raquel is played by Claudia Bassols, who also attended the dinner.
Claudia Bassols
Some of you food lovers might recognize her from Spain On The Road Again with Mario Batali, Mark Bittman, and Gwyneth Paltrow.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Where to Eat for Palm Springs Restaurant Week: Catalan (Rancho Mirage, CA)

Catalan in Rancho Mirage opened in 2012 by father and son Mark and Drew Davis. Drew had worked in New York and moved to Los Angeles to be a private chef to Steven Spielberg before finally deciding to open a restaurant in the Palm Springs area. Catalan is a Mediterranean restaurant, emphasizing on Italian and Spanish influences.

For Palm Springs Restaurant Week, Catalan is offering a $38 menu that has not been determined and will probably change between the 2 weeks of May 31-June 16, in line with their policy to use local, seasonal products. We tried a lot of great dishes during our media visit, though, and you can probably expect the same for the prix fixe menu.

The entire table loved the Chicken liver flatbread, caramelized onions, roasted pears, smoked mozzarella ($17)

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I mean, you eat chicken liver with bread anyway right? So why not put it on top and bake it together, add on some roasted pears and caramelized onions as "condiments"? So good.

More chicken liver? Why not! Especially when they're fried, like these Buttermilk crispy chicken livers, manchego polenta, wild mushroom port reduction, herbs ($15)
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I wondered if the typical Palm Springs audience is adventurous enough for chicken liver but either way I'm glad the chef isn't shying away from it.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tasting Spanish Olive Oil at The Bazaar: All the Things I Never Knew

Did you know that Spain is the largest olive oil producer in the world? Spain produces 52% of the worldwide olive oil while Italy produces 21%. There are 2.5 million hectares of olive trees in Spain. That's about as big as the state of Massachusetts!

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I was recently invited to a tasting of olive oils from Spain led by Alfonso Fernandez Lopez from the LA trade commissioner of Spain. Different farmers from Spain have put together their resources for this event, where I learned so much about olive oils. We tasted four olive oils and proceeded to partake in a multi-course lunch prepared by the staff of Jose Andres' The Bazaar at the SLS Hotel, with each course centered around olive oil.

I have an open bottle of olive oil in my pantry that's probably been there for months. Little did I know that an open bottle of olive oil will only maintain its full aroma and flavor for 15 days!

Tasting olive oil turns out to be as rigorous as tasting wines and there are many varietals with distinct characteristics.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Spanish Suckling Pig Feast at Lorca (Tijuana, MX)

Spanish suckling pig seems like the perfect post to follow-up Balinese suckling pig. The suckling pig at Lorca was our first meal on the 2nd day of the Baja FAM Media Trip. The Tijuana Convention and Visitors Bureau wanted to showcase not just the Mexican food scene of TJ but other higher-end options around.

Lorca is a showcase of Andalusian cuisine in a cozy and rustic setting. Rumor has it we originally went there for the Paella Valenciana, featuring clams, shrimp, chicken, mussels, and saffron rice.
The paella at Lorca is a dry paella version, but flavorful and full of great fresh seafood.

We did realize that this was only our first (out of seven) stops of the day. We knew we should eat light and pace ourselves.
But what were we supposed to do when they brought out a whole suckling pig??
I had suckling pig at Ford's Filling Station before, but this one here was much more impressive.

Fragrant, succulent, moist. Crisped skin.
Balinese suckling pig is more flavorful, but Spanish suckling pig is more tender. Try them both. We all aimed for the cheeks and of course Deep End Dining went for the brain.

The meal was accompanied with garlicky potatoes.
Needless to say, we ate too much for this meal. Especially considering we had 6 more restaurants to go to.

Lorca
8611 Brasil street
Col. Cacho
Tijuana, Mexico
Ph.(664) 634-03660
www.lorcarestaurante.com/

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