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DUE TO MOVE TO THE MAIN DINING ROOM OF QUO VADIS IN AUTUMN 2016
According to one fan, the "sheer theatre" of this small but frenetic Frith Street outfit is what sets it apart from its rivals; others simply claim it's "the best tapas in London". Either way, Barrafina can do no wrong. Modelled on iconic Barcelona joints such as Cal Pep, it's little more than an L-shaped marble counter with a few stools that overlook the prep area, while the food is all about "fresh uncomplicated flavours". Meltingly piquant cheese and ham croquetas, good salty chunks of blackened chorizo and a "breakfast" of morcilla with peppers and quail's egg are top calls, although the smart money is on the daily specials – perhaps scallops with pumpkin purée, a stack of crispy prawns or ox tongue with rocket and horseradish. Meanwhile, the patient staff are happy to explain the menu and recommend a glass of something from the inviting all-Spanish wine list. Barrafina doesn't take bookings, but "queueing is part of the fun", insists one fan.
The Hart Brothers’ wine list is suitably compact and no-nonsense. A dozen whites, 12 reds, a rosé, three cavas and six sherries is your lot. But nearly all the wines are available by the glass, and for such a short list there’s an impressive mix of ‘safe’ and ‘cutting-edge Spanish’, particularly in the whites. Clear, accurate, supremely easy to navigate and spot-on for its purpose.
Being around since 2007, Barrafina was one of the newly awarded Michelin star restaurants in September 2014. Unconventional, there aren’t many Spanish tapas bars around with a Michelin star rating, and despite what you might think, a restaurant awarded with a Michelin star rating isn’t a decision factor for me at all when it comes to reviewing a meal. This was a restaurant sought out by word of mouth and therefore a visit was beckoning…With a semi-open kitchen, Mallorcan and Catalan tapas dishes flood the menu, dishes are exquisitely laid out to perfection. Forget the prices and focus on the taste. It’s...
More from Eat With Steph »
Before I left London for a few months, Barrafina had long been on my list. I had heard amazing things about the top-quality tapas from other bloggers so I knew that when I was back in London, Barrafina would be the first place to visit.After visiting the Christmas markets in South Bank with my equally quirky companion, I headed back to Soho with great haste in order to get there early. You may be thinking, "why would I want to get to a restaurant early?" One possibility is that I may be rushing to attend some event. The other possibility is the combination of a no-reservation policy and a small seating...
More from KOJO London »
I went to Barrafina with a couple of friends for lunch over the weekend. We arrived at 12.40, not realising it didn’t open until 1pm on Sundays, but there were already some people checking out the menu. They left and we wondered whether we should do the same. Barrafina has been on my list of places to try for the longest time and I had heard good things about it, so I was keen on waiting. It was good we did because it wasn’t long before more and more people started arriving and taking their place in the queue. We were the first in the door and as Barrafina only has 23 seats, an unlucky few who were queueing ended...
More from Half a Slice of Toast »
Barrafina Frith Street opened to critical acclaim in 2007 following on from the success of its sister restaurant Fino, both of which are owned by the restaurateur brothers Sam and Eddie Hart. 2014 proved to be a great year for the pair, with a second branch of Barrafina opening on Adelaide Street, also to critical acclaim, and the original Barrafina on Frith Street winning a Michelin star.As most Londoners know, Barrafina Frith Street is a tiny establishment. There are 23 stools which line the L-shaped marbled bar. There is a no-booking policy which means that at peak times diners can expect to wait for at least...
More from A Girl Has to Eat - Restaurant Reviews & Food Guide »
I am not going to write anything bad about Barrafina. There is nothing bad to say about Barrafina. General consensus is that the food at Barrafina is good and general consensus is right. But how good? Well, for me, just pleasantly good, not knock-your-socks-off good. I enjoyed everything I ate and the meal itself was a very pleasurable experience. Even the hour’s wait for a table passed by quite quickly as we started on a bottle of red and got some padron peppers and bread to keep us company. For the first time ever I think I actually found a spicy one!
More from Gingle lists everything »
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