Find and book great restaurantsFind a Restaurant
See more Editor’s Picks
|Address:||54 Frith Street, London W1D 4SL|
|Tel:||0207 813 8010|
|Price: £44.00||Wine: £19.00||Champagne: £65.00|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sat 12N-3pm 5-11pm Sun 1-3.30pm 5.30-10pm|
This review hasn't been rated yet.
Another evening, another foodie queue. Thank god my companion got to Barrafina at 6pm on the dot and bagged us a pair of barstools because, despite the fact that normally only miners eat at this hour, about 5 minutes later the place is full. The eat-at-bar concept really suits the light, bright, informal atmosphere here and has the bonus/downside (depending on whether you're queueing or not) of discouraging lingering. It also makes it easy to catch the eye of the cheery servers behind it when you decide to smash through the recommended 6 dishes per pair, which is easy to do. The appealing menu is supplemented by a lengthy specials board and a selection of seafood on ice which shout Fresh Fresh Fresh. We sampled (amongst others) some well-executed classics like Pan con Tomate and Croquetas, delicious honey-drizzled courgette flowers stuffed with creamy goats cheese, paprika'd unchewy octopus and tender scallops. This is messy, finger-licking food. I pulled off a prawn head covering myself and my companion in a garlicky chilli oil. I think it was worth the dry cleaning bill (I hope she agrees!). We also smash through the average lingering time by going for dessert (a Santiago Tart, like Christmas on a plate) and coffees. The wine list is a Chardonnay-free zone (Hurrah!) focussing on Iberian wines. We had an Albarino: light and fruity, perfect for fishy fresh food. I was lucky enough not to see the bill, but I suspect it fell somewhere between Bit High for Relaxed Tapas Dining and Surprisingly Low for Central Trendy Yumminess. By the time we leave, queuers are waiting patiently the length of the sidewall and, for those not so patient, are being fed tapas passed over the barstools. The Spanish traditionally eat tapas whilst propping up the bar so perhaps us grumbling London oldies should just revel in the authenticity of it all and invest in some support tights.