Queue-averse diners will find solace (and bookable tables) at El Asador – the third part of Basque chef Nieves Barragán Mohacho’s “sensational” three-pronged Sabor. One floor up from the fino-fuelled bar and tapas-focused Counter, this rustic dining room tells the traditional story of Spanish country cooking and long family lunches fuelled by copious quantities of Rioja. It looks the part too, with its wrought-iron staircase, tiled kitchen, communal tables and short blackboard menu.
To eat, the Iberian lamb ribs and txuletón gallego (well-cured Galician rib of beef) have their followers, but most come here for the “amazing” Segovian suckling pig (quarter, half or whole), cooked in a Castilian wood oven the time-honoured way, to produce crispy, tanned skin and tender flesh that needs only the slightest touch with a knife to fall off the bone. Simply add some patatas fritas (with espelette pepper or mojo rojo, perhaps) and a perfectly dressed tomato salad.
For a proper feast, start with crispy pig’s ears, paprika-spiked Galician octopus with potatoes or a slice of glossy cuttlefish empanada, its rich filling as black as night. After that, a few spoonfuls of refreshing goat’s-cheese ice cream with a splash of liquorice jus is about all you’ll manage. The Spanish regional wine list is a pleasure to explore, with plenty by the glass from well-known producers, old and new – another highlight of this Iberian high-flyer.