I simply love tapas; the small portion sizes allow one to select a variety of dishes. Late last year, I heard that a Spanish tapas bar called España had just opened on Denman Street in the West End, and I finally had the opportunity to visit this past Wednesday. My friends and I arrived around seven o’clock and were lucky to be able to grab a seat at the window counter; the place was extremely busy!
I perused their menu and noted that it was a combination of the traditional Spanish tapas I found in Barcelona and some that were locally inspired. We chose a wide variety of small dishes, some recommended by our excellent waitress. As the plates started arriving I was immediately impressed by the presentation. The use of shape, colours and patterns were definitely an indication of conscious thought and planning, unlike traditional tapas, which are quickly placed onto a plate and served.
The use of different flavours and textures were good but I felt could have been better executed in some dishes. Some were great, but others perhaps had too many non-complementing elements plated together, it is as if they tried too hard? Maybe as with many new restaurants, there is still a bit of fine-tuning currently in the works.
Would I go back? Would I recommend this restaurant? If you are looking for traditional tapas to reminisce of the time you spent in Spain then probably not, but if you are craving tapas and feel adventurous, it is worth a try. I think that with a bit of time, I would return and give their tapas another chance to wow me.
Location: Vancouver, BC