Cuisine: Spanish, Tapas
Location: Leederville – Newcastle Street
I have a more recent food review of Pinchos here.
When I met Justin Bell, owner of Jus Burgers, at the Jus Burgers Leederville flagship store, he also quickly showed me his other venture next door, Pinchos, a Spanish tapas restaurant. I had noticed the large paella pan as I walked by and wondered what this place was. With a quick explanation and tapas menu of Pinchos, I had to make a trip here. So I did. Unfortunately, while I was all set for paella, they had since changed the days when paella is served. It’s now on Mondays and Wednesdays where they serve up chicken and chorizo, and on Fridays they serve up a seafood paella. Doesn’t matter, I’m very keen to try out their tapas menu but dining solo, the variety was going to be limited. However, in the end, I did manage to comfortably order several dishes and get a fair degree of variety on offer. So read on for the dishes I selected.
Pintxos Gilda – White Anchovy, Guindilla Pickle, Green Olive – $1 each
Pintxos Sopa Salmorejo – Chilled Tomato Soup + PX Vinegar – $1
The great thing about the Pinchos tapas menu is there’s plenty of variety and several dishes at different price points ranging from $1 – $10, a few are at $32. The concept here is you are given the tapas menu, write down the quantity of each dish you want, and then present to the friendly waitstaff and your dishes will arrive. Keep on ordering like this till you’re full. Oh, and the same goes for drinks as the reverse side of the menu has a variety of Spanish beers and wines. One thing I must say is the food is fast out of the kitchen. It didn’t take long for the dishes to start appearing which is excellent.
The tomato soup has a lively tomato and roast capsicum flavour. The coldness immediately hits your palette which is cooling and comforting as the weather starts to heat up. It’s thick on top and a bit pulpy even though it is smooth and down the bottom it becomes sweet and acidic due to the vinegar. It’s certainly refreshing and the acidic kick at the end is interesting.
With the white anchovies, the saltiness of the olive comes through immediately with a muted zing from the chilli pickle. It looks like a pale green chilli soaked in vinegar to take the edge off. The slight fishy taste of the anchovy then shined through. I had a little nibble of the anchovy on its own and its quite fleshy. Just two simple ingredients compliment the anchovy and turn it into a delicious flavour combination.
Chicharrones – Roast Pork Belly, Cumin + Lemon $8
Croquetas – Smoked Ham + Chicken Croquettes (x 3) – $8.50
For something a little more substantial I ordered roast pork belly and croquettes. I’m rather amused at the cute mini paella pans the dishes are served in. Starting with the roast pork belly, the first thing you detect is the spice crumb. The dry rub coats the mouth intensifying the flavours as you chew through the crunchy crackling and the pork belly. A squeeze of lemon makes it even better. You’ll definitely need something to wash it down (water for me) but there’s also a range of drinks and Spanish beers on the menu.
The croquettes are steaming hot so cut through the firm crunchy exterior to get the steam out. You will immediately get the smell of the smoked ham once cut open. The gooey cheesy mixture is delicious, not so if it’s hot and burning your tongue! I love croquettes and these are fantastic! I love the golden brown crumbed coating and while the filling is a little rich it’s not over the top.
Tarta de Pera – Saffron Poached Pear, Quince + Almond Tart, Honey Mascarpone, PX Sherry – $10.50
I probably needed a salad or vegetable dish to round things off but it’s hard to go past dessert. A few sips from the shot-glass of sherry were tolerated as I don’t drink. In contrast to the cooling summer tomato soup, the gently warmed baked pear, quince and almond tart put you back in winter. It’s so comforting it could be likened to a big warm hug. Yes the tart was this good. Along with the rich creamy bowl of mascarpone with honey to cut through the creaminess this was quite a dessert that left me satisfied. Yum!
Pinchos Food Review Summary
Verdict: I might have originally arrived for the paella, but the Pinchos Spanish tapas menu serves up some delicious fare. With dishes ranging from $1 – $10, and a few at $32, there’s plenty of variety. Just write down the quantity of each dish you want and hand to the friend waitstaff. In no time, the kitchen was pumping out the dishes and I was lapping it up. I loved the chilled refreshing tomato soup with the acidic kick at the end. It’s the perfect start to a meal in the warm weather. The anchovy paired with olive and pickled chilli was excellent too. For something a little more substantial, I had the cumin dry rub encasing crunchy roast pork belly crackling and flesh. An interesting dish with plenty of flavour. I particularly enjoyed the thick, golden crunchy crumbed exterior of the croquettes. Open them up to let the steam escape and take in the aroma of the smoked ham. Then sink your teeth into the gooey cheesy chicken and smoked ham filling which is a tad rich but delicious. To finish, the honey covered mascarpone is an interesting pairing to the warm comforting winter warmer of the pear, quince and almond tart. Excellent dessert, excellent finish, excellent meal.
Pinchos Restaurant Details
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