Friday, May 23, 2014

Paella night and class at Bar Nacional

Bar Nacional has been around for a year and already people are loving it. They are loving the fact that there is more activity now in this area. But there were a few disappointing reviews on Urbanspoon and I didn't agree with any of them. I didn't agree with the one on the coffee.

Each month Bar Nacional hosts its own cooking class for $15. But I was invited to attend this one on paella. The one on paella was for $15 and it included tastings and one drink. A lot of people attended.  It was outside on this lovely autumn night.

We all (except for me- I had green tea from Byron bay) tried samples of Spanish beer. This was the traditional Spanish beer

Fog City is another type of beer

Tea

Olivia and her friend were lovely to me.

There is news that Chiara (by the Walker Evans Group) is opening on June the 13th.

There are more classes to come including one on making sausages and one on Spanish wines.

Now I know how Bar Nacional cooks their meat, which is pure and simple and I loved their prawns. However I felt that the mussel was a bit undercooked. the paella was cooked outside and some of the heat may have escaped.

The very next night I went back to try their $10 paella. I went during their happy hour. And it was in a big pan this time around cooking away. Everything was cooked perfectly this time. I'm not much of a meat fan but I did love the pork belly this time.

During happy hour they have $6-$7 wines

I was also invited to try other dishes such as the Prawn and avocado mousse with saffron and aioli, mushrooms three ways ($16 for two people) and a charred broccoli croquette ball with aioli (I think it was $2 during happy hour).

Everything was served together. I think the entrees should have been served first followed by the mains. It was confusing to work out what to eat first.

The Prawn and avocado mousse was an entree and I really liked how all the flavours worked together. The seafood was fresh and I loved the tanginess of the aioli.

The charred broccoli ball was good but I think there was too much sauce on the bottom. A little less sauce for a small ball might be better.

The mushroom three ways was good, but they should have smaller servings for one. This is meant to be a side dish to accompany main dishes. I really enjoyed the creamy sauce though which worked well with the mushrooms. A nice shiraz or red wine would work, but I don't drink.

The mushroom three ways went well with the paella.
The open kitchen

Menu during happy hour

Verdict: Do come back for their paella and tapas during happy hour. And seeing as this is a small place its better to book ahead for their paella night. It is popular with the locals.

It is a great take on fine dining without breaking your budget. Come during happy hour from 4pm-7pm and you'll be pleasantly very happy.
Bar Nacional on Urbanspoon
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