Restaurant Review: José Tapas Bar. It was the day before my birthday, so Homeboy and I decided to have an extended weekend food fest starting with José Tapas Bar on Friday. We’ve just moved into the area and had eaten a wonderful lunch here before. I wanted to write a review, so this was a good reason to do just that. If you’re looking for the best tapas bars in London, places to eat on Bermondsey Street or Spanish food in SE1 you really must check out this eatery by chef José Pizarro.
“For a real taste of Spain, head for the cute and cosy José Tapas Bar located on Bermondsey Street where you can share plates from the daily menu and enjoy a glass of sherry … or two,” Homegirl London
José Tapas Bar Menu
You’ll find the menu chalked on two boards behind the food counter, so it’s a good idea to take a picture, you can then grab yourself a stool and peruse at your leisure. The menu changes daily depending on which ingredients look appealing at the market. You’ll notice the hanging Jamón ibérico near the open kitchen which is top-quality cured ham. Perhaps you might prefer tasting the Chorizo ibérico instead, either way, I’m sure you’ll be happy! Or you can try the lamb cutlets or beef in tomato sauce.
We tried several veggie options which included the Padron Peppers with a light sprinkling of rock salt. The Patatas Bravas is always a dependable part of a tapas meal for me. These were lovely and crispy with a topping of spicy tomato sauce and aioli. I would have ordered the Tortilla and Pan Con Tomate but wanted to taste their desserts so refrained on this occasion.
We enjoyed the Chicory Salad with little segments of orange, finely grated Manchego and a scattering of pumpkin seeds which was fresh and fabulous.
It was a cold day with snow, so we also selected the comforting dish of Verdina Beans with butternut squash. This was warming, rustic and exceptionally tasty. A slice of grilled Fried Goats Cheese drizzled with honey hit the spot. Homeboy ordered himself the Hake A La Marinera which he loved. Other seafood dishes included Pulpo a la Gallega which features octopus, olive oil, paprika and salt. They also had Gambas al Ajillo, which is Spanish garlic shrimp.
Fried Goats Cheese
The two desserts were a Chocolate Pot with a drizzle of olive oil and the Crema Catalana which is a Spanish custard pudding similar to crème brûlée. We tried both of these and weren’t disappointed. To give you an idea of price points, the tapas ranges from £5 to £14.
Wine lovers will enjoy the thoughtful list, and if sherry is your tipple, then you’ll be in sherry heaven. The selection is from small Spanish producers which you won’t see anywhere else!
José Tapas Bar Interiors
This restaurant is small but very cute with a rustic charm typical of a Spanish tapas bar. In the summer, you will see people spilling out onto the street, chatting and enjoying the unique wine offering. Inside you will find stools for perching while you sample the small plates placed on the marble countertops. The décor is a delightful mix of tiled surfaces mixed with bare brick walls and wooden floors.
José Tapas Bar Information
To find out more about the restaurant, go to the José Pizarro Website. The restaurant is located at 104 Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3UB. The nearest bus, train and tube station is London Bridge, or you can walk from Borough station. Check online for the current opening times. Enjoy!
Author: Homegirl London. Photographs: Homegirl London. Thanks: To Homeboy for treating me to this pre-birthday lunch!