Remember when “modern Spanish tapas” restaurants were all the rage? It was a grand ol’ time (in the early ’00s), when chefs could charge big mark-ups on tiny bites of food dressed in micro-greens, stamp the word “tapas” on it, and sling it out into the dining room where hungry guests would crowd around three peas on a shiny earthenware share-plate and call it a night. We loved it. Ate it up. Small plates? How European.
And then, we — like we always do — got bored of it. Sure, Amada, Tinto, and Jamonera are all still there, alive and well. But we maxed out with our frou-frou Spanish restaurants, and slowly but surely, the tapas craze came to an end.
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This past Tuesday, South Philly’s long-in-the-making Spanish wine bar and restaurant, Barcelona, ever-so-quietly opened its doors at 1709 East Passyunk Avenue — the old Man’s Image space at the intersection of 12th and Morris Streets.
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In a post to Facebook on Friday afternoon, Bar Ferdinand announced that it is closing after service on Monday, October 10th. The restaurant has been open for more than ten years, initially a bellwether of the Northern Liberties becoming the hip new neighborhood and then in more recent times, a sign of stability as the fortunes of the Piazza and Northern Liberties have ebbed and flowed.
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Photo | Mark Garvin
Fernando Mendez had done 5,000 words of translation, and it seemed like a lot. Then he looked at what was remaining in the text of the play, and he realized he wasn’t even a third of the way done. “You don’t even want to know” how long it took to translate the whole thing, he told Philadelphia magazine.
In all, Mendez translated 18,630 words. And, this Wednesday at the Plays & Players Theater, there will be a Spanish-captioned performance of Jennifer Childs’ one-woman play, I Will Not Go Gently. Mendez’s translation will be displayed on captioning equipment on a side of the stage.
The impetus for a Spanish-captioned performance came out of 1812 Productions’ work in ESL (English as a Second Language) classes at Newcomer Learning Academy at Franklin Learning Center.
“We have a whole group of students we’re not able to serve because of the language barrier,” says Childs, who is also the producing artistic director and co-founder of 1812 Productions. “We can connect with them in the classroom but we can’t bring them to see our work.” Tyler Melchior, the marketing and public relations director for 1812, suggested the company use its existing captioning equipment to subtitle the performance. 1812 had previously used it to put on shows for deaf and hard-of-hearing people. Read more »
Jamonera turns 4.
Spanish tapas restaurant and #41 of our 50 Best Restaurants List, Jamonera is celebrating its 4th birthday with a special menu that includes a collection of their most popular picks from the last four years.
The birthday bash takes place this Friday, January 15th, and Saturday, January 16th.
Here’s what’s going to be served »
It’s local tomato season | Shutterstock
Just about every restaurant worth its salt has is celebrating local tomatoes with at least an heirloom tomato salad nowadays. But a couple of restaurants are going to the next level by creating whole menus with the tomato as the centerpiece.
Meritage is offering a special tomato tasting menu from Friday, August 28th through Friday, September 4th. The four-course dinner includes lobster with tomato conserva to a tomato sorbet with lemon biscotti.
At Jamonera, the Midtown Village Spanish restaurant is celebrating Lo Tomatina, Spain’s huge tomato throwing festival. On Sunday, August 30th and Monday, August 31st, Jamonera is offering a 10 dish, tomato tapas dinner for $45 per person. The local tomato menu will feature everything from tomato gazpacho to tomato sofrito with chorizo.
Check out both menus »
Earlier this month, we told you about Tinto’s new happy hour. Now, Jose Garces’s other Spanish restaurant in Philadelphia is getting a similar happy hour makeover.
Beginning today, Amada is offering a $5 tapas and drink specials from 5 to 7 p.m. on weekdays. Look for favorites like Piquillos Rellenos (crab-stuffed peppers), Patatas Bravas (spicy potatoes), and Croquetas de Jamon (ham croquettes) all to be on the happy hour menu.
In the drinks department, Amada will be offering $4 beers, $5 sangria, $6 wine and $8 cocktails.
Tinto is now offering happy hour Monday through Friday, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Jose Garces’s Basque restaurant is offering their most popular pintxos for $5 each. The restaurant is also offering $5 white and red sangria, plus $7 wines.
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Amada, Iron Chef Jose Garces’ Old City Spanish tapas bar and restaurant, is hosting its bi-annual Pig Out on Sunday, September 28th. There will be two seatings for the dinner; the first is at 3:30 p.m. and the second at 6:30 p.m.
The dinner itself will feature a three-course meal starring endless amounts of the Amada’s signature dish, Cochinillo Asado, or roasted whole suckling pig. The pig is carved table-side by a chef and is accompanied by side dishes including rosemary scented white beans, crispy roasted fingerling potatoes and for dessert, indulgent bacon and peanut butter macarons.
Full menu »
Jamonera is hosting a Paella and Sangria Night tonight, Monday, June 23rd. Attendees will get a tapas appetizer, a pitcher of either red or white sangria and, of course, paella. But your decision may get tough when it comes down to what type of paella you’re getting because Jamonera is offering up three options – seafood, vegetarian and a mixed dish, which includes seafood and meat.
Dinner is $35 per person. To make reservations, call 215-922-6061 or visit http://jamonerarestaurant.com.