For the past 3 years I have been harboring a serious obsession with Tasca. Living in the food obsessed world that I do, I thought everyone knew about the adorably traditional Spanish hole-in-the wall that serves up only the most delicious tapas for the most ridiculously inexpensive prices, but I still find myself running into people who haven’t heard of it yet. So I’m here now to officially blow up this hidden gem’s spot.
Having won countless “Best of Boston” awards I know I’m not the only one who’s fallen hard for their extensive list of hot and cold tapas, their $5 pitchers of Sangria or their $18, 3 course pre-fixe menu they offer every week, reminding one that restaurant week CAN live on forever. Located on Commonwealth Ave in Brighton, it can be a little bit of a trek if you don’t have a car. Luckily enough, if you do have a car, they offer free parking in the Whole Foods lot around the corner. But if you don’t have a car, trust me, the t-ride is worth it. The food is always beyond delicious; in traditional tapas-style every dish comes out as it is prepared, ensuring that it is hot off the skillet and MmMmm perfect. And to anyone else who suffers from serious food ADD (which I do) it’s perfect for those moments when it’s just impossible to pick one thing. With tapas ranging anywhere from $3 to $8 (the average is $6) it’s the perfect place to go with a few friends and try a little of everything, which is exactly what I did the other night.
Ordering a meal fit for a king we started off with the Escargots; a dish I’ve never been too fond of, specifically because of the texture. It weirds me out. After trying them again, I’m still not a fan, although I can’t say I didn’t enjoy the flavors. The snail itself was drenched in butter and garlic, a hard combination not to like, but I quickly moved on to the Solomillo, which was a Petit filet mignon served in a red wine sauce with mushrooms. Next enter the Patatas bravas, which are essentially home fried potatoes. Paired with a spicy tomato sauce and topped with garlic aioli, they are a necessary side dish to any meal at Tasca.
We then ordered the Fried Calamari, Warm Brie, Goat Cheese Empenada’s and Seared Tuna. All were amazing, but not to be out-shined by the Pisto Manchego which included a bevy of roasted Mediterranean vegetables served on garbanzo pesto toasted flatbread. This may have been one of my favorite dishes. A little on the lighter side, it was the perfect mix of eggplant, tomatoes, zucchini, spinach and peppers. We also ordered the Gambas al ajillo (sizzling shrimp in garlic with chili pepper) and the Braised Short Ribs, two of my go-to, always delicious crowd-pleasers.
*I apologize for the photo quality, my Cannon decided to fail me upon arrival so I ended up using a friends BlackBerry.
And let’s not forget the Octopus…
13 tapas, 3 desserts and 3 bottles of wine later the bill arrived. I was beyond shocked pleasantly surprised with the total: $158!?! I’m pretty sure that’s almost unheard of anywhere else in Boston.
Although small, Tasca has plenty of tables and really is the perfect place for any occasion. Starting with a romantic Valentine’s date, I’ve since been back for birthday parties, going away parties, just because parties, girls night out, dates, double dates and more. The staff is seriously accommodating and they are always nice, knowledgeable and charming. They also have a variety of entertainment on any given night, including flamenco dancers and live music such as classical guitar. A restaurant that will forever remain in my top five Boston favorites; if you haven’t been yet, GO!!
And be sure to join their e-mail list (either online or when you dine at the restaurant) because they are constantly sending out coupons, weekly pre-fixe menu’s, new menu additions, special deals and more. With prices so ridiculously low I’m not sure how they are still in business, but whatever they’re doing, its working!