To get over ‘hangover Thursday’ we decided that we needed a good, hearty lunch. I have been hearing good things about Malaga Tapas (near Shields Road underground) so we figured that this would be the perfect opportunity to try it out.
I have to admit that from the outside this place was not selling itself to us but once we got inside this all changed. We arrived fairly late on by lunch standards so the restaurant was quiet but we were met with a smile and taken into the dining room. The first thing that struck me was how authentic I thought it looked- all dark wood and chunky seats. It felt homely which was perfect when you are feeling as weary as we were!
After ordering drinks, our waiter came over with a complimentary hor d’oeuvre of crusty bread with what tasted like a red pepper topping and olives. I felt like I was on holiday being given free food! I will admit that this small gesture won me over immediately.
The menu is extensive and they had a lunch deal on where you could choose any three tapas from the a la carte menu for £6.95. We eventually decided on six dishes and some bread to mop up the sauces.
The first dish to arrive was Pinchos De Ronda, which is marinated grilled chicken skewers served with a sweet chilli dip. It was full of flavour and the chicken was juicy – we knew we had come to the right place for lunch.
When I read on the menu that they made their own Chorizo I knew that Chorizo Frito Al Vino Tinto was going to be my next choice. The paprika flavour in the chorizo was delightful and the red wine sauce complemented it perfectly.
I needed some good stodge in my belly so we went for the Patatas Gratinadas – creamy gratin potatoes with cheese.
We never go to a tapas restaurant without sampling the paella and this time we opted for the chicken paella. It was a thumbs up from us…full of flavour, with lots of peas and chicken to balance out the rice.
As Mr S was feeling a bit delicate, we went for another skewered dish so he could avoid too much sauce. This time we plumped for the pork skewers that were marinated in garlic, cumin and red wine (Pinchos Morunos). This was similar to the chicken skewers, and was also a hit on the taste scale.
Last but not least, I chose the Pollo Al Ajillo because I love garlic and it is a real treat having chicken oozing with oily garlic. This may have been my favourite dish – it won me over by having so many garlic slivers in the sauce that I could have a piece of garlic with every bite of chicken.
We couldn’t fit in dessert, in fact we had to take some tapas home due to our wimpy hangover stomachs, but next time I will not be leaving without trying one. I was very jealous watching another table get their Creme Catalan blowtorched at the table.
Last of all I have to mention the gentleman who served us – he was friendly without being irritating or imposing and he made us feel thoroughly welcome.
I always have a spring in my step when I try out a new restaurant that meets my expectations so I am happy to say that I walked out of Malaga Tapas with a big smile on my face.