Sunday, April 11, 2010


It's not everyday that I visit both locations of Boqueria in one day.  Actually, that has never happened to me before in my life.  But Alex and I went out for brunch at the Soho location earlier in the afternoon last Saturday and then we ended up meeting friends for a drink at the Flatiron location later that day.  I think Boqueria has some of the best tapas in the city.  Tapas have become altogether too common here in NYC and most of the restaurants are barely passable.  There are some obvious exceptions to the overwhelming mediocrity of NYC tapas restaurants.  Txikito, El Quinto Pino, and Tia Pol are all fantastic.  And I have yet to try Tangled Vine, a new tapas restaurant that just opened on the UWS, so I will reserve judgment until I have.

More after the jump!

While Alex and I are in agreement that Boqueria can't hold a candle to Umi Nom, it is still a really great restaurant if you are in the mood for tapas.  I always love the selection of cheese and artisanal cured meats, the blistered shisito peppers, the cojonudo (fried quail eggs and chorizo on toast) and the bacon-wrapped dates.  Their patatas bravas and some of the montados aren't half bad either.  But perhaps my favorite dishes at Boqueria are the ones on the brunch menu.  Once upon a time they had a delicious dish of baked eggs with chorizo and toast, but that seems to have transitioned off the menu.  This past visit we tried their version of buttermilk fried chicken and the soft scramble of eggs, shrimp and Guindilla peppers on a brioche bun.  The buttermilk fried chicken was tasty, but not extremely noteworthy, although the side of cucumber salad in pimenton yogurt was less than pleasing.  Somehow I found it off-putting, both texturally and also in terms of flavor.  I also thought the chicken would have been well-served by a drizzle of the spicy roasted garlic aioli they serve with the patatas bravas, but that's just me.  In contrast to the fried chicken, the soft scramble of eggs on the brioche bun was phenomenal.  It was the perfect brunch dish.  The only thing I would have changed about the entire dish (and this is a minor quibble, as well as a matter of personal preference), were the french fries that accompanied the dish.  The shrimp were perfectly cooked and slightly sweet little nuggets that studded the fluffy scrambled eggs.  Served on top of the buttery brioche it was amazing.  If you're in the neighborhood and looking for brunch options, I highly recommend it!

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