Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
Sep 24, 2013 01:14 AM

Toro-new Barcelona style tapas

Went to this newly open place last night located next to Colicchio & Sons at 85 Tenth Ave. The entrance is located on the far western side of building next to highway.It is a rather large space with bar seating, table seating and a seperate chef's bar tasting area. I went because Toro is one of my faves in Boston and it did not dissappoint. Started w thier corn on the cob all smother w savory goodness-grilled corn slathered with mayonnaise and loaded with cayenne pepper, then rolledg it in Cotija cheese w lime juice. I could make a meal with this alone. This was followed by Escalivada-a smokey eggplant dish w tomato base that I piled on bread and devoured. A deviled egg dish that was topped w tuna belly was a nice treat prior to my tripe dish. I thought tripe was extremely well seasoned-I only wish there was more chunky pieces of tripe in it which is the way I enjoy tripe. Had a spicy glass of a red wine called J Foraster whiched paired very well w the meal. Service was great and well organized even though it is newly opened. I went very early so I don't know how crowded it got but I suspect it will certainly be hard to get in or at least always busy as soon as people find out how great this place is.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Thanks for the report - I'm excited to try it in two weeks!

    1. How would you say it compares to places like Boqueria, Casa Mono, Tertulia, Txikito, etc? Not sure I understand why a Mexican style gilled corn dish is on the menu. But very cool that they got Matty Durgin (ex-Island Creek Oyster Bar, among other places) to do the cocktail list.

      6 Replies
      1. re: kathryn

        Don't question the corn on the cob!!! Just order and eat it!!! You will think you are in heaven!!!!

        1. re: UES Mayor

          OK, but how does it compare to other tapas places around town?

          1. re: kathryn

            For starters the space is huge and extremely comfortable. Of the places you mentioned, I only been to Casa Mono, I would have to say I prefer Toro much better-not so much food wise but at Casa Mono, I always feel so cramped in the tiny space of a restaurant which really takes away from a pleasureable dining experience. Toro seems to have a more hearty savory flavor to thier food-in a good way.

            1. re: UES Mayor

              What about the menu besides esclavada speaks of Barcelona, or Catalunya? The wine list? Just curious what make it a "Barcelona style" tapas place..could not find an online menu.

        2. re: kathryn

          I also went on 9/24. And I like it better than all those you mentioned (I have been to all of them) when it comes to atmosphere and layout. But when it comes to food, I like Casa Mono more, if comparing to the more traditional tapas dishes.

          What I like about Toro the most is, the innovative tapas. I have more detail reviews on the another post.

        3. Good to know about another good Spanish place in that burgeoning tapas-crawl area of Chelsea.

          The only online menu that I came upon was the Boston site and they have paella, different kinds. Are paella also offered in the NYC site?

          1 Reply
          1. Just went, and enjoyed the food very much. It is a huge menu, though, so barely made a dent, but it is worth going back.

            Had the Foie Gras (lovely), Bocadillo with uni (delicious with a contrast of texture from the very crunchy bead, but if you really love uni the raw preparation may be more to your taste), Bacalao croquetas (not one of my favourites, the texture does not compare with my favourites at Tia Pol and Boqueria), Bone Marrow with beef cheek marmalade (I always love bone marrow, the citrus salad alongside was refreshingly tart but did not seem to go with the bone marrow, and the beef cheek marmalade was delicious, but not a marmalade), and the Pulpo, which was very tender and tasty (though needed more than half a sliced fingerling).

            The cocktail menu is interesting, but the execution seemed a bit off (the grapefruit drink was too sweet, and the elderflower drink was too tart... and the waitress was nowhere to be seen until the last quarter of the meal).

            The service was inconsistent. The waitress was very nice and helpful at the beginning, but proceeded to disappear for most of the meal even though we looked and asked for her (to fix the drinks). The busboys were very eager to clear the table (even with food on the dishes), as though they had been told to expedite the meals (though no one was waiting in the bar area really). And the waitress breezed back in when we were almost done to give us a "recap" of what we had eaten (?!!) and push dessert, with no mention of the disappearing act in between (or ask of what we had needed). Weird.

            That said, the food overall was tasty and less run-of-the-mill than the usual tapas place, and it is a lovely space. I will be back.