Tuesday, January 09, 2007

I get a unique satisfaction from knowing about something from day one. And the level of satisfaction is usually correlated to how much other people lose out by not having the same information. Not because I want anyone to suffer, but because I want to fully exploit my privileged information by sharing it with you here. So we all win in the end.

And today's news centres on last night's exciting opening of Barrafina, the hottest restaurant to hit London so far this year. Barrafina is serving up tapas on Frith Street and can best be described as a smaller and more affordable version of Charlotte Street's much-loved Fino, which is little wonder as they are owned by the same people.

The focus of Barrafina's menu is on sourcing great ingredients and cooking them simply. From grilled seafood and chorizo to tortillas and tarts everything is seasonal, fresh and delicious. The wine was obviously carefully chosen and all available by the glass. The interior is reminiscent of an intimate Barcelona tapas bar, with a no reservations policy and seats for only 23 customers at its counter. As a customer there is constant theatre as you sit overlooking the kitchen area - a restorative birds-eye view for anyone traumatised by Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares. The staff are friendly and refreshingly don't subscribe to the London practice of hurrying you out.

It was buzzy and full of life on a Monday in January. That has to be more than you can say about most places. Is it too early to call it Newcomer of the Year?

54 Frith Street
020 7813 8016


Anonymous GA said...

The hottest restaurant to hit London this year? Today is January 9th, CS.

Whoa, slow down...

12:27 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think she was having a laff ga...we like to call it English sacrasm here

12:36 am  
Anonymous Claire said...

Sounds great CS!Can't wait to try it out out as we absolutely LOVE Fino's.Yum Yum salted almonds can taste them now...

8:30 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oohhhhhhh......yes sounds delicious. What Soho needs.

8:30 am  
Anonymous ella said...

To call Fino a tapas bar is like saying Gaudi was an interesting architect. This is nueva cocina of the type you normally only find in Spain, ...
Can't wait to try the new little brother Barrafina
Nice one CS!

8:33 am  
Anonymous badgelady said...

I haven't been out to eat in Soho for ages because nothing appeals. This place sounds great. Forget the Costa del Sol...

10:27 am  
Anonymous bighouselittleman said...

London needs more affordable and simple restaurants. Did you see that Ramsey got panned in NYC Slicker? Must make you giggle.

11:02 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just passed it at lunchtime today. Absolutely chocka. Looks great!

3:23 pm  

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