On The Tapas Trail
Hit the Cork Tapas Trail with Rioja wine-maker Campo Viejo last Sunday and it was a good one. Four restaurants were visited over the course of a leisurely two and half hours, tapas galore were consumed and no shortage of their 2007 Reserva either!
This is the first year that the trails are being held in Cork. The Cornstore, Arthur Mayne, Oysters and Electric are the participating restaurants. Wednesday evenings and Sunday afternoons are the days and it is great value at twenty euro. The Cork trails run from now until June 5th (with June 2nd excluded) while the Dublin dates, again Wednesdays and Sundays, are from June 9th until July 17th. More info here.
There were four groups on last Sunday's Cork trail. Ours started in the Cornstore with a glass of Campo Viejo Cava and a selection of gorgeous tapas with the Jack McCarthy Pudding and Queen Scallop my favourite though I got through them all including that luxurious flourless chocolate cake at the end. By the way, did you know that the Cornstore are now dry aging their own beef with Himalayan salt and that means their steaks are extra special at the moment.
Our guide was Paul and he told us a few yarns about the city as we strolled between the various restaurants. Next call was to Arthur Mayne Chemist in Pembroke Street. Not now a chemist, though many interesting artefacts remain on view, but a wine bar cum cafe.
Got some tasty stuff here too, including a meat and cheese platter and a lovely treat on the way out, a sinful mouthful of their Mint Aero Chocolate Mousse. Didn't realise they had such an extensive menu here. Must call again.
Then we got a big welcome from Donal and his crew in Oysters and a lovely selection of their food on a board. Highlight? Hard to pick one. The swordfish was superb but then so too was the Butternut, Squash and Sage Risotto, the Duck Parfait and the.... Much of this board also features on their €35.00 table de hote menu, available nightly until 7.00pm. And one that I can highly recommend!
Then it was up the Mall to Electric, our final stop on the trail. Here Jason filled us in on their short hectic history and on their most recent development, the lovely fish bar upstairs. Treats here included a Crab Mousse and a very special Polenta and Wild Garlic Mini-muffin (below). No shortage of the Campo Viejo red either as an interesting afternoon came to a pleasant end by the banks of the Lee.