“Taberna del Volapie”:http://www.tabernadelvolapie.com looked modern and bright and had both indoor and outdoor seating in a quiet, wide alley on what transpired to be rather uncomfortable grey wooden chairs. The menu was the centre-fold of the restaurant’s ‘newspaper’ – there is an extensive chain of Volapie restaurants in major Spanish cities. We chose a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc (a very reasonable €11) and decided to share tapas – prawns, salmonrejo and a tuna and avocado salad.
Firstly we were presented with a small complimentary hamburger which was very good and got things off to a good start. The prawns arrived beautifully displayed on a tray in a neat row along with a bucket for the shells, wet wipes and a brown paper bag of bread. The salmonrejo (a type of gazpacho) was excellent and presented in a small glass ramekin whilst the fresh tuna was served on top grilled peppers and avocado and topped with alfalfa sprouts. The bread mopped up the delicious juices.
Rather than a pudding, we ordered a Manchego cheese with sherry rind and asked for a sherry to accompany it (they were all priced at €1.95). Whilst we were waiting, we were offered a further complimentary tapa (presumably because of the sherry) which was a plate of six pieces of grilled chicken. We politely declined and waited for our cheese which was cut into long thin strips and served with small crackers. The sherry was a dark, but dry and went very well.
Our overall bill was €31 and we were so happy with the price, quality of food and service that we decided to return.
On our second trip, it was cooler and so we sat inside – we also wanted to avoid the uncomfortable chairs! Our waiter from our first visit (who we later discovered was called Javier) was there and told us that we couldn’t order cava by the glass. However, whilst we were choosing what to eat, he relented and poured two glasses from a newly opened bottle. Unfortunately the only boquerones (anchovies) were frito and so after the free tapa burgers, we ordered a meat platter of four different types of very thinly sliced pork (two cured and two fresh). All were absolutely delicious and came with another free tapa of a Russian salad. Javier was very knowledgeable about the meats telling us which part of the pig they came from. We’d planned on having albondigas (meatballs) next, but the flavours of the meat were so good, we didn’t think it would work and so had a cleansing salmonrejo again.
To finish we asked Javier to recommend a cheese which would go with the remaining bottle of cava which we thought it would be nice to have as he had opened it especially for us. He chose a soft cheese with mushrooms which was excellent.
We’ve often found that a second visit to the same place can be disappointing, but not this time.