Monday, May 21, 2012
Yesterday was a day filled with surprises. We had agreed to meet Nacho and Cayetano at 12:30 at Las Torres to have a little something before we headed out to the Asador 7 de Julio for lunch. Susan and I arrived first and took a seat inside and ordered a glass of white wine while we waited for our friends to arrive. They showed up ten minutes later and we proceeded to chat, drink and listen to some very good music. We managed to consume two dishes of peanuts, a dish of olives and a plate of puntitas while we had another glass of wine and Nacho and Cayetano had another beer or three.
Las Torres is, for all intents and purposes, a bar that serves food. It offers a variety of tapas and during the week they offer a dish of the day that you can the basis for your lunch. The dish of the day is usually less than four Euros. The bar has undergone an extensive renovation and is now very attractive with new chairs and tables, as well as new walls. It was a very lively place yesterday with regulars dropping by to have a drink and catch up with friends. The place is bright, light and airy and in now way resembles what the English word “bar” conjures up.
A little after 2:00 we decided that maybe it was a good time to make our way to the restaurant. The four of us hopped into Nacho’s smallish Fiat and fifteen minutes later we were in Manises two minutes away from the airport, but right in front of the Asador 7 de Julio. As we drove by the front door Nacho emitted an “Oh, oh!” and it indicated that something was just not right.
He had seen a young lady in her first communion dress and Nacho remarked that he forgot the May here in Valencia is the month of primeras comuniones and primeras comuniones mean a large celebration in a restaurant. As it turns out there were five parties going on and there was no hope of getting seated. So, we piled back in the car and headed back to town.
We thought we would eat at Canela, but when we walked in the place was jammed and our friend, José, asked if we had made a reservation. We hadn’t. He was sorry, but, at the moment, there were no tables available. He suggested that we go up the street to Canela Taberna, have a beer and stop by again in a half an hour. That’s what we did and it worked. Thirty minutes later we were seated at a prime table upstairs.
Canela has two special menus each of which offers three appetizers, a main dish and dessert. We ordered two of each menu for the four of us and that meant that we got to enjoy six different appetizers, a steak, a supreme of bacalao and a plate filled with a variety of desserts. The appetizers were, in no particular order: jamón serrano, pimientos de piquillo stuffed with seafood, a salad that featured smoked salmon and mango, a timbale of smoked fish, a crepe filled with vegetables and goat cheese that had been breaded and warmed in the oven and served with a raspberry sauce. We enjoyed all six, and we also enjoyed the steak and the cod. In spite of being filled to the brim, we managed to polish off the dessert plate that featured watermelon, strawberries, a profiterole, a brownie covered with warm chocolate sauce and a slice of cheesecake. We finished our meal with coffee and a complimentary mistela. We did enjoy a bottle of wine and our bill for the eating extravaganza was 106 Euros.
It was 5:30 when we left the restaurant and our eating orgy had begun some five hours before. We walked Nacho and Cayetano to the car and we continued on home where we took a well-deserved nap. Our evening was limited to watching TV and reading a bit. We went to bed a little after 11:30.