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Neighbourhood: Osborne
484 Stradbrook Avenue
Phone: (204) 477-6500
Entrees: $4-$28

While tapas is not unheard of on local menus, Segovia Tapas Bar and Restaurant is the city’s only exclusively tapas restaurant. That singular vision serves the Osborne Village hot spot well, as diners line up each night for a coveted table. For the uninitiated: Spanish tapas—small plates of either hot or cold dishes—are designed for sharing.

Ever since the 43-seat restaurant opened last December, tongues have been wagging over Executive Chef Adam Donnelly’s innovative plates and the restaurant’s stunning interior.

Segovia playfully salsas between traditional and modern in both the menu and décor. On the menu, classic Spanish tapas are “tradicionales,” while contemporary creations are in the “nueva cocina” section of the menu.

Similarly, the lounge has a slightly more “Old Spain” style, with rustic wooden tables and exposed brick wall. In comparison, the chic dining room is decidedly current with a stencilled black wall and a beautiful polished silver fireplace. An installation of white driftwood hangs from the ceiling and meat hooks in the entry are warehouse-inspired coat hangers.

The food is just as spellbinding as the ambiance. An order of orange and thyme olives marinated in-house is a punchy start. The orange packs a citrus smack, which cuts through the olive’s rich oil. The medley of olives range from salty to bitter flavours all with a whisper of thyme.

Spicy pork albóndigas, a traditional Spanish dish, find a fine balance. The heat found in these plump meatballs charges forward like a feisty bull. House-smoked tomato sauce, shredded Manchego cheese and sprinkle of bread crumbs tame the spice.

Most of the meats found in charcuterie and cheese boards are cured at the restaurant. Carnivores should order the hard-to-find jamon ilberico de bellota. This cured Spanish ham comes from the black Iberian pig that feeds on acorns in the wild. Shaved thinly and presented on a wooden cutting board, these silky and savoury flakes of meat are paired with crusty grilled bread drizzled in oil.

The chef ’s creativity shines in the “nueva” menu, starting with the ever-popular grilled hanger steak. Served rare, these delicate pieces of meat are masterfully seared and heaped on a bed of earthy beetroot. The sting of horseradish salsa verde and tangy Valdeón cheese layers add exciting dimension. Chocolate lovers will salivate over dense chocolate torte with crushed pine nut brittle. A scoop of house-made cardamom ice cream complements the chocolate with satisfying creaminess.

Segovia is open Sun-Mon 5pm to midnight, Wed-Sat 11:30am-2pm and 5 pm-midnight.

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