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Sam and Samantha Clark’s follow-up to Moro isn’t just your regular tapas drop-in – it also does duty as a cosy Spanish/Middle Eastern ‘mezze bar’, which means there’s plenty of exotic spice and all
things nice among the expected croquetas and patatas bravas. As a concept, it works a treat: quails’ eggs with a touch of cumin, lamb kofta and beetroot borani go just as well with a chilled sherry
or caña as jamón Ibérico and Padrón peppers.An extensive daily menu also allows for a good measure of creativity in the tiny kitchen– hence sweetbreads with grilled grapefruit or sea-bass roe with
grilled baby gem. In short, Morito is a ‘find’ that has guests coming back to torture their behinds on the wooden stools and join the queues for dinner (bookings are only taken at lunchtime).
Lovely lazy Sunday afternoons are made for tapas! I'd normally head over to Jose on Bermondsey Street but being especially lazy on this particular Sunday we just rolled down the hill to Exmouth Market.Morito is brightly decorated and has a buzzy atmosphere but is essentially a tiny space. Nothing more than a few tables squeezed in along a main bar. I love this sort of set up; you sit cheek by jowel and jostle for space overlooking the open kitchen slash bar.The wine list and cocktail menu seem perfect for afternoon boozing. The bicicleta is a favourite of mine and is well worth a punt. Lovely lovely campari mixed with nothing more than white wine...
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Nestled in Exmouth Market next to bigger sister ‘Moro’, the unassumingly small tapas and mezze bar is a hands down favourite among Clerkenwell locals and beyond. The main attraction of Morito is the bright and bold tangerine coloured bar where diners can perch and enjoy themselves with a glass of wine in hand, overlooking the chefs cooking dishes to order. Morito draws inspiration from Spanish and North African influences, cuisine which can be found predominantly in Southern parts of Spain in cities such as Granada and Cordoba, where the Moors invaded and inhabited. Scattered on the bar are an assortment of Morrocan style tagines and clay pots, filled with all kinds of seasonings, spices and herbs...
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We were given the best stools up at the bar, overlooking the chef who was slapping everything on the griddle and moving to Fleetwood Mac (with some style). It’s hard not fall in love with the casual and warm buzz and there’s enough character in the paired back decor so that you don’t think it has been designed by a tobacco rolling, tattooed hipster, like just about every restaurant these days.To start things off my partner helped herself to the nuts on the counter, mistaking them for a Spanish alternative to a bread basket, instead of being for the chef to garnish the dishes with. She soon realised her mistake when her hand was competing with the chef’s for a walnut...
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Morito resides in the restaurant haven that is Exmouth Market and it serves tapas with influences from North Africa and Lebanon. It has a sister restaurant next door called Morro which is much bigger and serves larger dishes.We turned up for lunch (booking was essential as it’s so small and it remained busy throughout our visit) and were seated at the bright orange bar overlooking the tiny kitchen. Just two chefs worked in the small space which was impressive seeing as they produced such delicious food. The place had a great atmosphere...
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Everything about Morito is perfect for sharing. The tables are close set – so you’ll be sharing space in an intimate way. Come with good friends! The tapas plates are small sized, and arrive quickly. We always order together, eat together then order more if we want. Most often, it’s an intuitive ordering too, a quick glance down the menu, a suggestions from the staff, and then a random firing off of a few dishes, until a knowing glance tells you you’ve ordered enough...
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I visited Morito once before (for a special seafood and sherry tasting event last year), but - despite numerous trips to sister restaurant Moro - I never managed to return to try the standard menu. I finally got my chance a couple of weeks ago, at a relaxed Monday night dinner with my boyfriend and his lovely cousin. Showing up at 7pm, we had no problem getting a table for three, making Morito a great alternative to Moro if you haven't had the chance to book weeks in advance! (although it's still pretty busy later in the week)...
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On my birthday night, I went to Morito at Exmouth Market.It is a small restaurant specialized in spanish food : Tapas ! I was surprised, they have a big tapas MENU...
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Morito is nothing new. It's not one of those recent openings with hyped up praises and accolade. Nothing that it serves is consider as the most current and hippest and definitely no trendy ingredients pass through the kitchen. Yet quietly over the years, it managed to collate some devoted followings and regulars customers. It is easy to see why, for what this tiny little Tapas bar does offer, it does it with such conviction that along with it's pared down interior, orange accents that mirrored that of a glorious Spanish sunset, marked this out to be a great little joint...
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Stephen has been to Morito so often that I almost felt like I'd been myself. He always speaks highly of it and I have been pestering him to go with me for a while. That day finally came when we decided to celebrate our anniversary with a lunch there.Morito does little plates with a Moorish feel to them. Prices range from 2.50 for an assortment of breads up to about 8.50 for some lamb chops. The place is very fond of cumin.Because Stephen has been there so often and done the hard work for me, by trying most of the dishes on the menu, I turned to him to lead on the choices and I was pretty much guaranteed that each one was going to be a winner. And they were all good.I had a carafe of full bodied, syrupy syrah with my meal, although Stephen had a few glasses of this as well as his medium beer. We ordered the bread basket to start - a dense, chewy roll each, a large cumin dusted flatbread to share and some breadstick nibs. The breadstick nibs seemed a bit pointless, not really having anything to dop them in, although I did discover you could roll them in some oil and then roll them in the spices you get on the table, which made them quite nice. The other two breads were delicious and I should have saved more of mine to soak up the extraneous oils, juices and aioli from our little dishes.You can order as many as you like at a time and they all sort of come out haphazardly. The first to come was the scallop dish with sherry vinegar and butter sauce. One plump scallop which had been sliced neatly in three. We then had the jamon croquetas - perfectly crispy on the outside while being soft and creamy inside. And no scrimping on the jamon either.The lamb chops with cumin and paprika were tasty and once again had me bemoaning that you get so little meat on them. They weren't quite as good as the ones I had in The Painted Heron, and were maybe a tad underdone near the bone. Which was funny in a way, as Stephen had said that the last time he had them, they'd been a little overdone. So I guess consistency on the lamb chops isn't their strong point.The butifarra sausae with white beans and alioli was a lovely salty, meaty, and slightly stodgy dish. Both the sausage and the lamb chops provided plenty of extra oil, and a bit of alioli to get that bread out and make sure none of it went to waste. I think I spot some cumin!We knew we wanted to end with the grilled tetilla cheese with walnuts and membrillo but we also splurged and ordered one other dish as well with that - the chicharrones. I am so glad we got these - I think they were my favourite dish. Cubes of pork belly in cumin (again!) and lemon. The pork was crispy around the edges but soft and tender in the middle, and I loved the lemony tang.As we were finishing off with the cheese - the sweet quince bringing out the slightly sweet flavour in the cheese, we had a couple of 'digestifs' to end the meal with. I ordered an amontillado sherry, my first ever sherry, and Stephen had a negroni. That slightly melted tetilla cheese was wonderful, another highlight. I loved the sort of crust on the edge where it had been grilled and then the oozy middle to scoop out and sprinkle with walnuts.Squidgy, cheesy goodnessI enjoyed my sherry more than I had actually expected. It was much more like a strong wine, quite dry - I think I might now be a sherry drinker! But then I knew that Morito/Moro was a good place to start.Cheers!
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A while back we tried the food at Moro and liked it. This time we decided to try out its sister restaurant Morito. And guess what, the food at Morito is awesome…why did we not try it out earlier!!...
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