Yes, it’s a chain, with Dallas and Houston the only Texas links at this point. Nevertheless, the folks who created this contemporary space, with several rooms and a skinny outdoor patio along its east side (best in the late afternoon) got a lot right. There’s an ample selection of beers, cocktails, and wines (3-ounce, 6-ounce and by the bottle) at fair prices. More than ample is the food menu, which includes an array of charcuterie and cheeses and a choice of around thirty tapas dishes. Add to that a handful of salads, a few large plates, and desserts. We started happily with a paper-thin pile of jamón serrano with a side of buttery, aged Manchego cheese. From there, we never got beyond the tapas, most priced under $10 and shareable. Chicken Pintxo, skewered by toothpicks, proved tender and was accented with dill aioli. Another dish—small, tender slices of rare steak, came with two sauces: a fennel puree and a truffle vinaigrette. Though our red snapper a la plancha proved a bit dry, it was saved by cherry tomatoes and an oil-based sauce with tomatoes and basil. A surprising fav? Super sweet dates wrapped in smoky bacon with a blue cheese–based sauce, a satisfying contrast of textures and flavors. Even that now overserved cheese, burrata, gained new life atop sweet figs with a touch of mustard. Only the heavy breading on a spiced beef empanada dish missed the mark.
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Barcelona Wine Bar
We never made it past the tapas menu, and we're not complaining.