Iberica, Great Portland St

I was out at a business meeting on Great Portland st and it was suggested we pop into "Iberica" afterwards for a bit of tapas and a glass of wine. I was very glad that we did easily the best tapas I have had in London. Tapas tends to be a form of food that talks a good game but rarely delivers. It should be cheap tasty snacks to accompagny a glass of wine, It too often ends up being stodgy and oily or if it is good it is horrendously expensive. I remember one set of tapas and a very average bottle of wine at "Providores" that set me back nearly a £100. My supplier Robin useds Iberica a lot as you can eat light or go for something more substantial. He also noted that the site on Great Portland st had been a white elephant for years with the average tenancy for a restaurant being 9 months, Iberica had broken that cycle and was very buzzy on Thursday lunchtime with a mixture of business people, tourists, families and a few Meeja types.

We ordered a plate of ham, 2 types of croquettes, some squid, some bread and oil and a tortilla. This was washed down with a bottle of light red. The food was excellent. The tortilla in particular was the best I have ever had instead of being a stodgy quiche gone wrong we had a lovely thick omelette that was runny through the middle. Delicious stuff. Again the croquettes were so tasty, not overcooked so you could taste the ingredients. The aioli with the squid was a little harsh but the squid itself was delicious. The ham was top quality with a nice selection. The waiter explained the choices to us and throughout the meal we had very friendly service. The wine was very nice as you would expect. This was ticking all the boxes for me.

The restaurant is built in a sort of duplex so there is plenty of light giving the room a light airy feel. Robin got lunch but I think it all came to under £80 for 3 of us which is really good going for the quality on offer. I can understand why he goes there for lunch regularly. It's a place I am extremely keen to go back to again so I can fully banish the memories of several bad tapas meals I have had in London. a real gem of a place well worth a visit

Monday, July 05, 2010
Overall rating
Food 9 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 8

Otto Pizza, Westbourne Grove, No longer with us

The Hillgate, Notting Hill, another local