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Recommendations for Tapas

g
gator14 Mar 5, 2007 02:28 PM

Am looking to find a great Tapas restaurant. Have been to Tasca in Brookline and Tapeo on Newbury Street - enjoyed both, but am looking for another place to try. Anyone been to Bar Lola? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. The more authentic the better.
Thanks!

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  1. limster RE: gator14 Mar 5, 2007 02:49 PM

    I thought the items I had at BarLola recently was ok but nothing special. http://www.chowhound.com/topics/373669

    Taberna de Haro and Toro are likely to be better bets.

    1 Reply
    1. re: limster
      b
      bachslunch RE: limster Mar 5, 2007 02:54 PM

      I'll second Taberna de Haro and also recommend Dali in Somerville. Lots of folks here like Cuchi Cuchi in Cambridge, but I'm less impressed. Was also underwhelmed by Solea in Waltham, though it's not terrible.

    2. NiKoLe1625 RE: gator14 Mar 5, 2007 04:04 PM

      Toro in the south end is amazing!!

      1 Reply
      1. re: NiKoLe1625
        foodforthought.m RE: NiKoLe1625 Mar 6, 2007 05:18 AM

        I was not very impressed with Toro- the food was ok but they seemed a bit confused- there were sliders on the menu...odd... I like Tapeo better- esp. the patio in the summer. Great for people watching

      2. lissy RE: gator14 Mar 6, 2007 04:58 AM

        I like Toro especially for their cod fritters, the corn, the jamon serrano and the rose cava which is quite reasonably priced.

        1. MC Slim JB RE: gator14 Mar 6, 2007 05:17 AM

          I like Taberna de Haro and Toro a lot. Taberna seems more traditional and is comparatively inexpensive; it has a superior wine list, nearly 200 Spanish wines, plus a good list of ports and sherries. There's a very interesting sherry/tapas pairing menu that you can only get while standing at their six-seat bar. It feels like a family operation: either or both of the husband/wife owners are always present, and you can see every dish being prepared fresh.

          Toro is a larger space, has a menu that's broader and a bit more free-wheeling, has more exotic seafood tapas on its menu (in the style of a Barcelona tasca), ranges beyond Spain (a tasty grilled-corn dish is Mexican in origin), and is rather more expensive. Its wine list is less interesting, but it has a full bar and decent bartending.

          Neither place takes reservations, which makes potential long waits a problem at both. Service at both is a bit variable: Taberna has at least one server who never seems to smile, and Toro's servers can be obnoxiously aggressive with plate-clearing when they are busy, which in its current hotspot phase of popularity is often.

          I thought BarLola was really dreadful, despite a very cool-looking space. The food gave me the impression that the folks behind the menu had never been to Spain, and a lot of it seemed prepared far in advance and unevenly reheated (probably microwaved) before serving. I was served an awful cheese plate that included completely stale (I mean dessicated, rock-hard) bread, among other ill-conceived dishes.

          1 Reply
          1. re: MC Slim JB
            hotoynoodle RE: MC Slim JB Mar 6, 2007 08:07 AM

            i'll agree with the above and add that i hated barlola. i ate once at the bar, and the bartender was completely absorbed with another party at the bar, to the point where i had to wave him down more than once. it was a sunday evening and that couple and i were his only guests. he seemed thoroughly put out when i needed him. ack. the food was not worth his attitude.

            i love taberna, the owners are warm and genuine, the menu authentic and the wine list is fun. service can be a bit haphazard, but of the above it feels the most like spain.

          2. t
            talltravel RE: gator14 Mar 6, 2007 05:41 AM

            Another thumbs up for Toro, it's unique and typical at the same time.

            1. i
              italyinmind RE: gator14 Mar 6, 2007 10:09 AM

              I love Toro and Dali. I've only had a few items on the Toro menu, but enjoyed them all. Dali is one of my favorite restaurants in Boston and I prefer it to Tapeo. I also like Cuchi Cuchi, but don't really consider it a tapas place, but rather "small plates" since they are not limited to Spanish cuisine.

              1 Reply
              1. re: italyinmind
                hotoynoodle RE: italyinmind Mar 6, 2007 10:44 AM

                the owners of cuchi-cuchi emphatically disavow the term "tapas", since they serve an international menu.

              2. m
                mmmangia RE: gator14 Mar 6, 2007 11:09 AM

                Dali

                1. v
                  VegaCarpio RE: gator14 Mar 6, 2007 05:32 PM

                  If we go to Taberna de Haro tomorrow, how long might be the wait around 8:30pm?

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: VegaCarpio
                    MC Slim JB RE: VegaCarpio Mar 6, 2007 06:34 PM

                    Let's see -- Wednesday night, cloudy and temperature in the teens, [shakes Magic Eight Ball]: 30-45 minutes. Okay, I'm totally making that up, but I'd be surprised if you could get seated immediately; it's a pretty small place, and that's prime time. Deuces and four-tops are easier to seat than bigger parties.

                    If you end up going, let me know how I did!

                    1. re: VegaCarpio
                      limster RE: VegaCarpio Mar 6, 2007 07:08 PM

                      You might be able to score a spot at the bar if you're lucky.

                      1. re: VegaCarpio
                        hotoynoodle RE: VegaCarpio Mar 6, 2007 09:22 PM

                        check to see if they are doing restaurant week...

                        1. re: VegaCarpio
                          l
                          LauraB RE: VegaCarpio Mar 7, 2007 10:53 AM

                          You could try calling ahead. To my knowledge they do not take reservations, but one time as we were waiting they told us we could call ahead in the future and at least "up" our place in line. Also, at least on a Tueday night fairly early they did take a reservation for a party of 8 I went with to Taberna a few months ago.

                        2. chowciao RE: gator14 Mar 7, 2007 05:00 AM

                          I love Tapeo on Newbury street as well. They used to have (may still) a wonderful garlic soup. It is the place where some friends and I go to to celebrate the first warm days of spring. It's a wonderful place to sit outdoors and people watch and you munch on some interesting Tapas.

                          1. b
                            BostonBarGuy RE: gator14 Mar 7, 2007 10:42 AM

                            Toro, hands down.

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