Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Friday, March 25th - Mis Trucos - Creative yet Autentico Tapas

Polenta Fries with Cheese Fondata Dip
I have passed this place numerous times and never tried it.  It is in a very unlikely situation despite being right on Davie off Thurlow.  It is actually a bit off Davie as well.  I'm sure if you've been strolling down Davie you'd have 'missed' it too.  It is in what appears to be a lonely 'heritage' house that has been converted into storefronts.  The restaurant is up the stairs behind the shops as if in the second floor of the house.  In the summer they sprawl out on to a roof top patio as well.

As we're somewhat chained to the St. Paul's hospital area for a few weeks, we asked some colleagues of D for recommendations for places to eat.  Mis Trucos came quite well recommended.  And as I have a bias to lovely Spanish food, I stopped listening to the rest of the list :)

It is a small, dainty place that could easily be the size of a small studio apartment.  I would say it's a well hidden gem for the area if not for the full house of patrons who would tell me that I'm quite late to the party.  We ate at the bar since we had to be back at St. Paul's in little more than an hour.  Well, normally, bar service is faster since you can grab the attention of the servers but not so here.  The slow service was probably my only disappointment.

Ash Covered Cheese Plate
There was a decent selection of classic and spins on classic Tapas (small plates) and Pinxos (pinchos - single bites).  Having lived in Barcelona for a few years, I tend to have fussy expectations of dishes people like to randomly call Tapas so they can charge full price for small plates.  If it is just a small plate, just call it a small plate and don't give it the spanish monicher of Tapa.  Well, Mis Trucos managed to hit a decent authenticity even though playing on the theme which was awesome. 

Crispy Bread covered Prawn with Aioli
As a minor digression, you should know that most reviews and listings for restaurants will list average 'dish prices' when categorising the cost level of the place.  So if a place features 'Tapas' then you may see them listed in a modest cost level but really the per person cost for the dinner is not because you will order several.  I give the price range based on what you will actually eat and not the per dish cost.

Bacalao Bunelos with Smoked Paprika Aioli
We started with the Polenta Fries with Cheese Fondata.   They were cooked perfectly and managed to have a nice balance of lightness and substance.  That was followed but something quite unusual that D's colleague raved about, Prawns wrapped in very thinly sliced Bread with Aioli.  This was so simple yet absolutely delicious.  We also had the Ash covered Cheese plate and Braised Octopus which were yummy.  The Octopus was tender and well seasoned.  I think my favourite Tapa for the night was a toss up between the Polenta fries and the Bunuelos, Salt Cod Fritters with Smoked Paprika Aioli. The Bunelo is a small fritter with out the Potato filler like the other popular Spanish tapa called the Croqueta. 

Braised Octopus in Tomato Foam  with Ham Chip
The price range was much more appropriate for Tapas than similarly themed restaurants in town.  The service was on the casual slow side but nothing as painful as our night at Bin 941 a couple of nights ago.  In fact, I made a point of complaining at Bin 941 that we had been waiting excructiatingly long, nearly 40 minutes for our last dish despite the server telling us that it was being plated as we spoke.  Well, the other server we managed to flag down refused to apologise and said she wanted to check the pos first.  Nice.  Shockingly rude and terribly slow service that night at Bin 941.  If I'm in the mood for tapas next time, I think I'll find my way a few blocks west at Mis Trucos instead.

Ambiance: slick yet cosy
Service: casual yet friendly
Cost: $$

Mis Trucos
Robson Street/West End
1141 Davie Street
Vancouver, BC V6E
(604) 566-3960
Mis Trucos on Urbanspoon


1 Leave a / Read COMMENTs:

Tiffany said...

My first restaurant job was at a tapas place ... this food looks wonderful! Mmmmmm, bacalao!