291 East Pender, Vancouver
Tel: (604) 423-4300
Advice: No reservations.
With it’s focus on the Basque style, it’s the food and drink of San Sebastian that will lure you in to this hotspot with a great vibe in Chinatown. Here it is about drinks (wines from Spain and Italy), Vermouth, Sake; and pinxtos. This is a great spot to go late night as well as in the early evening, everything I tried was delicious.
Started off with a glass of the Vermouth Rosso on ice, and then enjoyed some of the different pinxtos, the Gilda a small skewer with Spanish Anchovy, frescatrano olives, guindilla pepper and big on flavour.
I then enjoyed a selection of 3 pinxtos on a board (Sierra with Jamon Serrano, Spanish quince paste, manchego 6 mo; The Italian with Hamachi sashimi, fresh figs, pecorino toscano, sweet basil topped with balsamic reduction and lemon oil; and the Ultimate Sardine with Spanish olive oil, cod fish liver pate with yuzu ponzu, smoked Spanish paprika, roasted red pepper).
With the pinxtos, I paired it up with a flight of red wines two from Spain and one from Italy, each one offered up different notes, inviting you to take a sip and a bite of each of the pinxtos and decide which pairing you like best.
In addition to the pinxtos, they also offer a selection of conservas, these are imported from Spain in a small tin can with fish or seafood. I had the Tuna Belly Conservas served with potato chips and olives and it was simple and full of flavour.
I finished off my evening with some of their Basque cider which offers quite a different tasting note than that of local ciders; the Basque cider perfectly paired with the Cheeses board (Maron and Manchego; fig bread, marcona almonds and quince) along with the Bread board with small breadsticks.
This is a great place to go with a date or a friend before or after a show, watch for expanded service with daily lunch to be offered soon.
Review by: Richard Wolak