We love nothing more than telling our mom that we’ve just spent the evening at a Tapas Bar. Without fail, she hears “topless” and the thought of gyrating, naked women makes her run for her Bible faster than Meredith Baxter at a carpet sale.
Somehow imagining us with boobies and coochies all up in our business is slightly less terrifying than visions of us with another man.
But when we called to talk about our most recent visit to Sangria Mediterranean Tapas and Bar, she was no longer fooled because the first thing out of her mouth was, “Ooh, tell me what you ate!” (On second thought, maybe she didn’t know where we were.)
We had quite a tale to tell her thanks to the new menu at this cozy little joint on Cole Avenue. The concept of tapas is great all on its own, what with all the little tastings that allow us to share a variety of items rather than get saddled with a lone entrée for the evening. But for the most part, the end-all-be-all of tiny plates is primarily of Spanish origin.
Sure, they offer plenty of Spanish items, like their Sangrias. Skip the so-so Red Sangria and opt instead for the delicious and refreshing Sparkling or Pomegranate variations, available by the glass or as we like to say, “Pitcher for One!”
Toasted Marcona Almonds and Marinated Olives are both wonderful traditional choices to snack on while you ponder the rest of the menu. And Shishito Peppers are the closest thing to one of our all-time favorite gastronomic passions: authentic Pimientos de Padron (known as Spanish Roulette in Barcelona). They’re simply flash-fried in sea salt and olive oil and though typically mild, you can come across one or two hot ones that are like a Roman candle exploding in your mouth. Love it!
What makes the new menu at Sangria so exciting, however, is where it ventures away from España to indulge in some heavy Greek influences for many winning dishes. Make sure to try the Trio of Dips (Hummus, Babaganoush and Labneh) if only to have something nearly-as-tasty to put atop the most wonderful flatbread we think we’ve ever eaten. Hot, soft and buttery tasting, we definitely didn’t reduce our carb footprint when they brought us a second basket.
Forest Mushrooms Gratin and Warm Pencil Thin Asparagus with Fresh Hearts of Palm Slaw are two veggie dishes that had us thinking for a brief moment that going vegetarian might not be so hard after all. Then came the Traditional Greek Mousaka with its comfort-food seduction; the Moroccan Chicken Tagine with tri-color cous cous, dates and almonds in a beautiful piece of stoneware; and Slow Cooked Oxtail with Seared Diver Scallops.
For dessert, Churros with a luscious chocolate sauce are simply divine and the Bakalava with Pistachio Ice Cream was a real table-pleaser.
As much as we love everything we tried, we sincerely hope they change the menu again soon, because we can’t wait to be invited back to savor even more options. When the weather’s nice, this place has one rockin’ patio that’s perfect for sipping the night away.
And if you’re lucky (this is Dallas afterall), a real stripper or two will be nearby so you can send a photo to your mom of your night out at the Tapas Bar.
Go on, mess with her head!
4524 Cole Avenue, Dallas