Location: 501 Elizabeth St, Surry Hills
Booking Required: Usually
I’ve been here twice and, while there have been flaws, I’ve left pleased twice.
On the first visit on a warm afternoon we got a table near the bar, which had a nice cool breeze blowing through it. We worked out way through some good tapas dishes and imbibed the ubiquitous sangria.
The meat platter is excellent and got me into blood sausages periodically. Fried whitebait was also quite nice, as was the jamon with rockmelon. I don’t remember any of the other dishes on that visit falling short. Combined with pleasant service it really was a nice evening.
The second visit was a little less successful. A larger group of us sat out the back in the converted courtyard sort of room. And while it was a rather hot day, the heat was nearly uncomfortable in the room. Having sweat pour down my face while I dine isn’t the best way to spend a meal.
Again, good, solid dishes arrived one after the other. But the mussels, cooked in a chilli tomato sauce, were terrible. Just lacking a fresh taste. The majority of the bowl sat untouched.
But again, good service, good food and good sangria made a good night. While this didn’t topple Encasa as my favourite Spanish in Sydney, it has cemented a spot firmly in the top three.
RATING: Will Return To