I cannot claim to be the expert at Spanish food. Like everyone else of a Filipino heritage born and raised in the Philippines, what I know of Spain is that we were colonized for 400 years, we took inspiration from a lot of dishes, instilled in ourselves the language, and found a trace of lineage here and there (some more than others, me, I do not think even 5%). I do like what I’ve had, food wise at Boqueria, even if it may not be the most traditional, or the most avant garde. It is, for me, just good. The two times I’ve been have been great, the first got me so excited about a new kind of food to try, I forgot to take photos. The second time around this Wednesday, I was ready. We started with the Alcachofas de Jamon Serrano (P388),Â which the menu translated to hearts of artichoke topped with Jamon Serrano. This was unusually good.The artichokes were a little tart, the jamon serrano salty and smoky, the onions sweet and caramelized, the alfalfa sprouts just a touch of freshness. All in all a great start to the meal. We then got a repeat, theÂ Pulpo a la Gallega (P280)
Simple and well done. The potato gratin was velvety, complementing the nice, chewy goodness of the slices of baby octopus. Only caveat, after a while the dish tends to pile on the oil, but that’s quickly remedied with a side order of bread to sop up the sinfully good sauce of tomato and olive oil. You’d think we wouldn’t have space for more, but we did, because the next dishes were what we came back for:
TheÂ Paella Queso Manchego (P408).Â Paella with spanish chorizo and manchego cheese. Carbs, cheese and smoky sausage, how can you go wrong? Rich, melt in your mouth, with just the right amount of bite, this paella is the paella even those who don’t like the dish will like. Stay careful of the oil though, because after the two dishes, the oil might be overwhelming. Which is why you should have the churros (5 pieces, P248).
We got the 5 piece to split between two people, and we wanted to get extra chocolate but we were too full to think. These are churros that put others to shame. Crispy but soft on the inside, with dark, rich Valor chocolate to dip into. Other churros can’t even compare. Verdict: I want you, I want you so bad. Prep around P800 a head when going, but for those pinching pennies, it’s well worth the money, I have to tell you.
Boqueria is at: 3/F SM Mega Mall Fashion Hall, EDSA corner Julia Vargas N/A Mandaluyong, Philippines
Mon – Sun:Â 10:00 am – 11:00 pm