Friday 2 August 2013

Bar San Juan, Chorlton.

Can you spot the local celeb?
As much as I enjoy planning meals out and holidays etc there's nothing like a spontaneous night out is there? Especially when the sun is shining.
I got a call at about 5pm from Mrs Bacon. "I have a seat outside San Juan!"
These seats on Beech road are like gold dust, there are only about 4 tables outside and I think we've got one about once this year. I hurried over and she had my pint of Cruzcampo waiting for me and some meatballs (I've trained her well!)

I reviewed San Juan back in January. I gave it a good write up and it has been one of my most read posts. (See here.) It would be interesting to see how it would compare. In the meantime we've been lucky enough to visit the some of the best tapas bars in the world in San Sebastian and some very fine ones in Barcelona (including Tickets, review to come shortly.) So we've changed, had Bar San Juan?
The Meatballs (£4.50) were pretty good, much the same as I remembered them.

However the Morcilla (black pudding, £4.70,) was nowhere near as good as the ones I had 6 months ago. These were in breadcrumbs so a lot drier, they'd tried to counteract this by adding a blob of sauce on the top, but it was really disappointing in truth. I'd been telling Mrs B how good they were as well.
A Cruzcampo or two later came our Croquetas (chicken £4.20.) I always order these in Spain and these were nice and gooey inside, a pretty decent attempt. 

Again I enjoyed the Cojonudo Murciano Sobrasada (Chorizo spread & fried quails eggs.) The pictures would have looked nicer if they hadn't broken two out of the four yolks though!

Finally the Tortilla. (£3.75.) This wasn't bad although a little too dry also, the ali-oli was a nice accompaniment with it.

Some friends turned up, (when you have a table outside you have to text everyone to come down!) We all enjoyed drinking in the evening sun. Apart from the plague like infestation of flying ants it was idyllic!

I have to be honest though, on the whole I was disappointed with the food at San Juan. A lot of my favourite restaurants (such as Mughli and Solita for instance) are always looking at ways to improve things, but here it was like San Juan had made a few things worse. I still enjoyed it for what it was and it's still better than most of the dull standard tapas bars you get in the UK. But judging it by Spanish standards as I'm choosing to do, it's very average.
I just wish that they'd changed their menu maybe add some new exciting and different dishes. It's almost like they're saying; 'we can just rest on our laurels as we're always busy anyway'. We don't need to change.
That's not good enough in my book, they should improve it, not stand still or go backwards.
The atmosphere is still spot on and it was a lovely evening as a whole.

Price: It mounts up.
Service: Efficient.
Atmosphere: Sat outside.
Food: Improvements should be made.
Star dish: Meatballs.

Score: 4/10. Must try harder!

I know it's a cliché but the tune I'm choosing for this review is Djobi Djoba by Gipsy Kings. Sometimes clichés work!

Bar San Juan on Urbanspoon

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