I'm a 26 year old male Senior Reporter for Weekend Notes. I Graduated from A Bachelor of Arts (Creative Writing and Communication) at UniSA in 2014. As well as writing for WN I have also done pieces for the Adelaide 36s and Mawson Lakes Living.
Published September 3rd 2016
The veins of this city are expanding. Branching off from the main bloodstream which is Hindley street the once dark offshoots light up. Warm lights, infectious laughter and the smell of spice and wine all say to you "come hither" and you're lead astray off the main thoroughfare to one of these brilliant streets.
My example tonight is Peel St and its spokesperson is La Rambla Tapas Bar. A welcoming taste of Mediterranean and adventure. You can't help but feel relaxed from when you first walk in. With a jazzy atmosphere and a casual, inviting setting you can just imagine that everyone here is an old friend welcoming you home.
La Rambla's large tables, bench tops, and booths all help ingrain this vibe that you and your friends can talk openly and laugh heartily and add to the soul of this place. La Rambla's old wood and brick veneer adds to a place that is already brimming with character. Warm lighting, charming set pieces and a well-stocked bar all come together in La Rambla to make it a place you really can call cool.
Peel St has recently become known for its selection of classy cocktail bars and La Rambla is no exception to this. Complimenting an extensive wine list and selection of beer is a comprehensive cocktail menu. You can come to La Rambla for pretty much whatever you want. Their bar menu has a good selection of your basic mixes, your bar staples, Spanish style solvents and exotic forget-me-nots. All of them either, tasty, sweet, strong or spicy.
La Rambla has booth an upstairs and downstairs bar.
I ordered a Clint Eastwood. A devilish mix of rye whisky, bitters, Chartreuse and Demerara syrup. A dry, smooth drink that delivers a sharp, concentrated burn. A drink that knocked me down like only the old cowboy could. Order one of these if you want the night to fade to black in a rush. I could have just had drinks at the bar all night. They were so delicious that I didn't really see a need for food. Although taking a look at the menu, I didn't want to pass up the opportunity to what sounded like absolute delights in tapas. Each one of the dishes I tried were packed with both flavour and more noticeably texture. Every morsel had a very distinct feel to it. Creating a noticeable distinction to the dishes.
The menu is separated into Charcuterie, Montaditos, Not Tapas, Traditional Tapas, and Chef's Creations. The Chef's Creations is definitely the one you want to look at first, it's where the adventure comes from. All the dishes from the Pulpo en Escabeche to the Floras de Calabacin may seem a tad askew but they somehow work. The food at La Rambla pulls no punches and makes no excuses. It dares you to venture out a find a flavour you may have never encountered before.
That's not to say their traditional dishes aren't something to be desired. My first dish was the Croquetas de Pollo - Chicken Croquettes. A simple starter that turned out absolutely delicious. The very definition of 'melt in your mouth' food. The texture of the potato and cheese disguises the chicken so well that you can be forgiven for not knowing it was there at all. A smooth and consistent texture that lets your mind focus on the flavour. And what flavour, a taste as if butter and cheese are just melting in your mouth. This is something that goes well with just about anything. All in all, not a bad way to start.
Now let's step outside the square. Next up is the Setas Con Remesco – Grilled Portobello mushrooms with sautéed spinach and walnuts on a bed of Romesco sauce. Now this is where things get really exciting. Where so many textures and flavours come together and hit you one at a time. The Romesco sauce and walnuts aren't layered on thick. So the taste of them will just strike you again and again as you enjoy the fresh, organic mushrooms and spinach that give you that good health feeling. Take your time with this one because there's a lot of different ingredients and tastes to take in.
Grilled Portobello mushrooms with sautéed spinach and walnuts on a bed of Romesco sauce
To finish things up I took a chance on the Cabra asada con setas y Mojo Verde – Slow cooked goat served on mushrooms with a spicy Canary Island sauce. This dish picks up from where the Portobellow mushrooms left off. The goat topped with alfalfa give it a real fresh taste with a crunch that mixes with the incredibly tender goat and mushrooms. A dish that has been lovingly looked after in the making to produce a true soft slow-cooked sensation. A definite recommendation if you want to taste the dedication of the La Rambla culinary staff.
Slow cooked goat served on mushrooms with a spicy Canary Island sauce
The dishes are sized well to give you variety and keep you satisfied. I would suggest bringing many friends to order many dishes. Perfect for a sharing experience.
La Rambla has many options depending on the feel you want for your experience. Large and small tables, booths, an outdoor area and food service at the bar. Take your pick and enjoy. The staff are talkative and welcoming. Start up a conversation with Simon, one of their bartenders, his knowledge and expertise on food and especially alcohol acts as a great guide to all that there is to offer at La Rambla. Whether you are a newcomer to the lounge atmosphere that is Peel street or a veteran looking for something new, without a doubt, go hit up this place.
This is Simon. Happy is help with any drinking needs.