A Spanish Craving

Every now and then, I get a craving for Spanish food. REAL Spanish food. However, being that I live in Seattle, and not in Spain, that can be a little hard to find. But I'm always more than willing to go out to look for that certain place that has the food that will make me stop chewing, (which almost never happens), smile, and say, "That's the one." Well, that or at least find a place that can induce immense food orgasms. (I must note that that only happened one time, and it was while I was eating Spanish food.) Or...I could just go back to Spain.

In the meantime, I'll have to settle for Ocho, a nice little tapas bar in Ballard. I'm not very sure why it's called Ocho, because they have a lot more than ocho tapas and ocho bebidas. Thien-Y and I walk inside and it is PACKED--no table space, no bar space. It almost reminded me of being in a tapas bar in Spain. We can't exactly wait outside; it's raining. That didn't stop us from ordering food and drinks, though.

We started with drinks, because that's always easier to handle when you're standing up. I had the Donkey Tongue, a drink with pepper-infused tequila. It was my first "savory" drink, and my first spicy one at that. And it was SO GOOD! It's not exactly Spanish-sounding (La lengua del burro? jejeje), but regardless, it definitely ranks as one of the best drinks I've ever drank.

By the time Thien-Y and I had our drinks, we were able to get a really tiny table by the window. And then it started coming. It all started coming.

Patatas Bravas - Definitely a go-to when ordering tapas and one of my favorites. They weren't as crispy as I had hoped, though, and I prefer my sauces mixed and poured over the potatoes. (Note to self: find a recipe for Patatas Bravas so that I can make them myself!)

Gambas al Ajillo - They were okay. Needed more garlic. I make them much better.

Banderilla de Boqueron - Thien-Y has never had anchovies, and so she insisted on ordering them. I've never had anchovies served like this before, but they were really good. Not as fishy as you'd expect, plus the artichoke and piquillo pepper complimented it well.

Pan con Chocolate - Really good, but not something I'd want to pay $3 for.

Chorizo Merguez - I'm sorry, I'm drawing a blank with this one. Guess that means it wasn't that good to begin with. Had it been good I would've remembered it.

La Carolina - The tapa of the night, hands down (and it's not because it has my name in it). Chewy, meaty, and caramelized to perfection.

Out of all the Spanish tapas bars/restaurants that I've been to here in Seattle, this place has the most "Spanish vibe", even though there were no Spaniards in the house. The ambiance seemed pretty authentic, but food-wise, I can't say the same thing. I guess I'll just have to keep on looking. Not that I'm complaining.

Ocho on Urbanspoon