Friday 11 January 2013

Favourite Tapas Bars: Taberna del Gourmet, Alicante.

A few years ago we took a mini break in Alicante.  It's a great little city, very Spanish and has quite a decent city beach. We stayed in the boutique hotel Hospes Amérigo. They had parma violets jam for breakfast; which was fab. They actually have their own swish tapas bar as well.

Just a bit further down the street we walked into Taberna del Gourmet also a busy and impressive looking modern tapas bar. I'd read about it somewhere or other.

It didn't disappoint. We had one of the best and simplest things you could ever eat; Pan de Crystal con tomato which is essentially bread with tomato and olive oil. It was so delicious and yet so simple. How could they make something so sublime with the simplest and least amount of ingredients? The bread perfect light and crispy, the tomato so ripe and fresh, the 'green' tasting olive oil.  I could never recreate this at home. It was like a mathematical formula - everything was just so superlative, a total and utter delight.
I hate it if you eat in a second rate Italian restaurant and the garlic bread is just so lazy it makes me angry. It's like the antithesis of this; there's never enough garlic so it just tastes of cheap cheese and a soggy base. It feels like anti-food where you can tell the chef neither understands or is interested in good food whatsoever. There's no care gone into it. Here, each ingredient was the best it could be.
Open top sandwiches, with the Pan de Crystal in the foreground.

We then had a selection of little open top sandwiches; foie, Jamón ibérico, salmon, tuna and caviar,  each one absolutely superb.
It was that good, we had to return next day, and it doesn't come with a higher recommendation than that.  Plus they do a taster menu now.
I would return in a flash tomorrow to just taste that tomato bread……

Taberna del Gourmet
‪Calle San Fernando, 10, ‬
03002 Alicante, Spain
Star dish: Pan de Crystal con tomato

It was Voted Spain’s best bar in 2009.

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