Since it’s inception in November 2009, Bistro Sixteen82 has been successfully pushing the envelope to provide a memorable tapas dining experience in a stylish and relaxing environment. This winter, Chef Brad Ball and his team will once again push the boundaries by moving away from traditional Spanish tapas towards new textures, new colours and new scents and flavours.
Last week Chef Brad invited us to be among the first to try out the round-the-world Tapas experience, which took us on a gastronomic journey all the way from Italy, Turkey and Scandinavia, to Asia and Mexico.
The menu has been crafted to give diners a taste of authentic dishes served in local cafés of these five countries, across three continents. The gastronomic international Tapas journey will run from May to October, excluding July when the restaurant takes a break.
May – Italy
We started our culinary journey in Italy. The breaded baby mozzarella is made from bocconcinni, flaky bread crumbs, or panko in Japanese, and served with salsa verdi sauce. The bite-size mozzarella balls was light and the coating crispy. The herbs used in the green dipping sauce added just the right amount of flavours to compliment the cheesy finish.
Staying in Italy we explored the flavours of Tuscany with a Chicken Liver Crostini with grilled focaccia, and topped with onion marmalade and oregano. This dish definitely raised the bar! It was spicy, flavourful and incredibly moreish.
June – Turkey
From Italy we moved to Turkey where a taste of the Middle-East awaited in zesty portions of Zahtar Beef. Zahtar is a spice blend made with dried thyme, toasted sesame seeds, ground sumac, and salt. The beef was succulent and tender and drizzled with a tangy tsatziki.
The yufka flatbread made us linger in Turkey for a while. Fans of olives and eggplant will thoroughly enjoy the smoky flavour combinations of this delicious Mediterranean dip.
August – Scandinavia
The Prawn Skagen took our taste buds all the way to Scandinavia. The portion of Norwegian prawns, garnished with mayonnaise, dill, and salmon roe was creamy and tasty but it was the Beetroot Cured Salmon that stole the show.
The freshness of the fish made this dish an applaudable delight! The Cured Salmon with lemon crème fraîche and pickled cucumber was a hit among most at the table and a highlight of the evening.
August – Mexico
The spicy Chicken Wings from the Mexican inspired tapas menu did not fail to impress either. A generous and flavourful serving of wings. Nothing to complain about here.
The same can be said of the Pulled Pork with a crisp flour tortilla and peppery smoked jalapeño crema.
September – China
Rib fans rejoice! Sticky Chinese Ribs – a serving of perfectly prepared Pork Ribs sprinkled with star anise and covered in hoisin sauce. It’s was honestly some of the best ribs I’ve tasted in a while. Extremely soft and bursting with flavour.
Our culinary journey through China ended on a high note with a serving of Teriyaki Chicken – a grilled thigh sweetened with soy sauce and spiked with lots of fresh ginger, honey and chilli. The dish reflected Chef Brad’s passion for authentic Japanese cooking and went down a real treat!
Regulars will be pleased to know that Chef Brad’s signature Tapas dishes will also be available to order, along with a tempting Winter Tapas Special comprising a choice of any two dishes from the Tapas menu served with a carafe of one of the Klein Steenberg wines all at R90 per person.
The round-the-world Tapas experience offers out-of-the-ordinary dishes, bursting with exotic flavours, colours and textures. If your looking for a dinning experience with a difference this Winter, we suggest you pay Bistro Sixteen82 a visit. The effort that goes into the dishes, makes the price is a real bargain!