Being a blogger is so much more rewarding, exciting and humbling than I ever knew it to be, and it has also completely exceeded my expectations with the company that it has brought me. I've met some truly lovely, intelligent, funny, interesting friends who I've felt at ease with the minute we bumped into each other.
Since I've done the whole "meet strangers from the internet" enough times to not be scared of it, it's become fairly normal for me and E has got used to it as well. However, E is a fairly private person (it's already hard enough for me to post the occasional photo of him on here!) and would never have imagined that he would do anything of the sort.
You probably see where this story is going... well, he must love me a lot, because it happened! Before you think I'm some kind of Wifezilla, he wasn't against the idea - just very apprehensive. But I told him that he'd taken the step into food blogger world with his instagram, so it was no big deal that he would join us for a foodie get together - after all, we all have at least one thing in common, right?
As it happens, I do believe that you naturally gravitate towards people who you probably have more than one thing in common with - even if it's not anything tangible like hobbies or backgrounds, it's that funny thing called chemistry that makes people comfortable with each other and have a great time. And that was how the evening was - a bunch of us would-be-strangers-if-not-for-the-internet, having a blast of an evening with food and drinks and lots of chatting.
The gang included Leng, Jesse, Emma & VA (all of whom I'd met before and knew were great girls), and we had a couple of boys in the mix in the form of Thach & E. Funnily enough, Thach and I had followed each other on Instagram for a long time, and he's actually from the same home town as E in the South of France, which is a nice coincidence!
We'd actually planned to go to Shackfuyu (the Bonedaddies new pop-up), but they unfortunately had a flood that evening and had to close. Knowing that we may have had too long a queue anyway, we'd booked a place as a Plan B - Morada Brindisa Asador. And it turns out that Plan B was Plan Delicious.
The Brindisa restaurants have a stellar reputation, and Morada is the new kid on the block (and the only one you can make reservations for, which is a big bonus).
"Placing emphasis on meat, seafood and vegetables, Morada Brindisa Asador is centred around the Castilian tradition of roasting suckling pigs and limb in an ‘asador’ - a vast wood fired oven. Sit back and enjoy the theatre of the kitchen as dishes are prepared directly in front of you at the 360 degree bar, in the Josper oven or over the Robata grill."
I loved the vibe of the restaurant - stylish, friendly, no banging music. Our waiter was lovely, patiently explained the menu to us, was generally very attentive which was great. Having seven of us around the table meant we managed to try a good variety of food, so here's a list of the things we ordered:
“Mojama” Cured Tuna with almonds
Hand Carved Iberico Bellota Ham
“Chistorra” Chorizo Fritter
Potatoes “Revolconas” with pork “torreznos”
Kale and “Escabeche” Sardine Salad
Butifarra Sausage with oven potatoes
Milk Fed Lamb
Roasted Suckling Pig
Coca Bread with tomato
La Bauma Cheese Cake
Homemade Tarta de Santiago
Writing about this now is making me extremely hungry, because honestly, this meal was absolutely wonderful. I loved every single dish, but the standouts were the Suckling Pig (an absolute must if you go), the Milk Fed Lamb, and the Potatoes Revolconas. Really though, we all agreed that everything was delicious (and that corn dogs should all be chorizo-filled), and we had some very nice red wine alongside our feast. It was quite the hilarious sight, as we all whipped out our cameras - be they big DSLRs, compact cameras or iPhones - and there was the unspoken understanding that no one touches the dishes until we're all done with the photoshoot. It's good to feel like crazy people together.
The desserts were great too, particularly the cheesecake in my opinion (although the waiter told us it wasn't his favourite! I completely disagree) - but we all pretty much liked everything,
For all that food and 2 bottles of wine between us, it came to about just over £30 per head, which I think is very reasonable for the high quality of food, and a good amount of it. I would go back there in a heartbeat, and I think everyone agreed!
We weren't quite done with our evening yet, so we went on to LAB bar, where they offer a huge selection of cocktails at good prices - definitely worth popping into if you're in the area.
All in all, we had a fantastic evening and I'm excited to give the other Brindisa restaurants a try. Oh, as well as Shackfuyu Take Two - hopefully with no flood this time.