Saturday, March 23, 2013
Yesterday we had a one-day spring tease. The sun was shining brightly with nary a cloud in the sky and the temperature reached into the high 70’s. It was a morning that begged one to sit at an outdoor café and enjoy a cup of coffee while basking in the sun. That is precisely what we did on our way home from the bank where we needed to take care of some business. We puttered away the rest of the morning, but not before deciding to have lunch at Alma de Temple.
Located in the Hotel Caro we had enjoyed a lunch there with Brian and Ofelia several Sundays ago. Our waiter that afternoon told us that we needed to return to try the rices and yesterday we did return and we did order the paella of the day. We started our meal with a shooter of green apple gazpacho. The salty bits of bacon that topped the liquid contrasted nicely with the sweetness of the liquid. A salad of lettuce, cherry tomatoes, and tuna followed. It was both refreshing and enjoyable. Our second appetizer was a plate of Carpaccio that was most enjoyable. Our main course was a paella prepared with red peppers and secreto ibérico. The rice was cooked to a perfect doneness – neither soupy nor crunchy. Some olive oil had been added to the dish prior to its being served and that was the perfect touch.
As we waited for our dessert the jefe de cocina – Brad Hyde – stopped by for a visit. Brad is from Oklahoma and in college he majored in criminology with a minor in Spanish. He met and married his Spanish sweetheart who it turns out is from Valencia. He attended cooking school here in Spain and then proceeded to work at a number of restaurants, even spending some time with noted Valencian chef, Óscar Torrijos. His next stop was Paris where he honed his craft and, upon returning to Valencia he began his stint at Alma de Temple. That was a year ago. Brad has invited Susan to come and spend a day with him so that she can do a blog post about the restaurant.
Susan had berries for dessert and I had torrija topped with a scoop of ice cream. When we finished our coffee, we paid our bill and went on our way. We rested a bit and then at 8:00 we walked to the Cines Lys to see the latest Almodóvar film, Amantes Pasajeros. It marks Almodóvar’s return to comedies, but I must confess that the film was not up to his usual standard. There were some funny moments and that is as much praise as I can give it. On our way back home we stopped off at The Ginger Loft for a drink and a nibble. The restaurant was fairly busy, in contrast to other restaurants we passed. We were back home at 11:30 and we went to be a little after midnight.