I’d been meaning to bring G to Iberico for ages and we finally got to try out their express menu for lunch one day. The express deal is fantastic value for money and is available on weekdays with lunch (12-2pm) priced at £12.95 and dinner (5.30-6.45pm) at £14.95. The menu includes either Catalan or sourdough bread, a choice of two tapas and a dessert. I’ve always loved their imaginative combinations of ingredients that come together in dishes that are so pretty it seems such a shame to eat them. I couldn’t wait to share it with G, especially since I’d brought friends from home here recently and they also loved the food.
We both went for the Catalan bread which made a great starter to the meal. Tomatoes were smeared onto freshly grilled, smoky crunchy bread topped with herbs and sea salt. The rest of the dishes came out in quick succession when they were cooked and ready.
The inside out chicken wings with yuzu and sweet chilli sauce were so moreish with tender flavourful chicken practically falling off the bones. I’m not afraid to say they were finger-licking and bone-licking good! You can understand why this dish has been a customer favourite for a long time.
Our one healthy dish of heritage tomato salad topped with basil and other herbs went down a treat. The battered and fried capers sprinkled liberally on top were an inspired twist on the dish and made for a wonderful crunchy popping texture in the mouth. Did I spoon the dressing at the bottom of the bowl at the end? Yes I did.
Onglet beef skewers with truffle sauce were a sticky unctuous delight. The meat inside was still perfectly pink whilst the outside was charred and smoky.
Cod cheeks with cauliflower sauce and pickle mooli took a little while to arrive and I suspect the kitchen must have forgotten it initially but all was forgiven when we dug into it. The cauliflower sauce served as a lovely creamy background to the flaky cod but it was the pickled white radish that provided that essential tang and crunch to the dish, and lifted it completely.
By the end of this, I was stuffed and was quite happy to call for the bill when G reminded me that we still had dessert to order. A not altogether unpleasant surprise!
G’s white chocolate cheesecake with blackberry compote and toasted pine nuts. I mean, come on, who serves pine nuts with cheesecake? And I say that only out of amazement to another inventive combination the team have come up with.
Mine was the more classic Spanish combination of churros with melted chocolate. Dipped into the heavenly bittersweet chocolate, my crispy light churros made a perfect ending to our meal. We left with happy tums and big smiles.
If you plan to go for dinner (either to try the express or a la carte menu), do book in advance as it gets busy but you can wing it if you go for lunch. Iberico opened a branch in Derby last year and a tapas bar in Nottingham a few months ago which I’m looking forward to trying out as well.
Iberico World Tapas
The Shire Hall
tel: 01159 410 410
Monday – Friday
12.00pm – 2.00pm
5.30pm – 10.00pm
12.00pm – 2.00pm
6.00pm – 10.00pm