Tapas and Wines

…. at The Old Greenhouse, near Chichester

Hand-picking harvest THUMBA midsummer evening at Nik Westacott’s small dining room was a perfect place to sample some interesting Tapas with Bush Vines wines to match! After a glass of Topacia Brut Cava accompanying almonds and crispy fried broad beans (habas fritas – now available in UK supermarkets), we enjoyed four more courses (each with 3 Tapas), cheese and pudding!

First up was delicious local asparagus, grilled courgettes in sherry and a mushroom & caramelised onion salad. Pazo de Mariñán 2012, a delicious white wine from DO Monterrei in Galicia (NW Spain) worked well with all three. [Most people associate Spain with red wines, but it also produces a terrific variety of interesting, quality white wines.]

Delicious seafood tapas followed – piri piri shrimps, saffron battered gambas and barbequed sardines which were matched with Peregrino Rosado 2012. This wine is versatile and has a natural affinity with seafood and spicy food.

Next up was Nik’s spicy meatballs (albondigas), patatas bravas and Padron Peppers (delicious tiny green peppers that look like big chillies, and occasionally you will find a hot one!). It was time to taste the first red of the evening, Peique Mencía 2011 from DO Bierzo (NW Spain), it’s savoury, cherry fruit palate was a good match.

Yet more dishes were appearing from Nik’s amazing kitchen…chicken with red peppers, beef with tarragon & olives and pea and pepper paella. Now we were into finer wines with Luis Cañas Crianza 2009 (from one of the top Bodegas in Rioja and this Crianza vintage scored 92 points by Robert Parker). All seemed to disappear with smiles all round! “ah, Rioja” was heard!

Manchego followed, matched with the final red of the evening, Prado Rey Crianza 2009 from Ribera del Duero. The discussion moved on to how distinctively different wines from this region are. Only 110 miles to the West of Rioja, similarly made from mostly Tempranillo grapes, but with different topography, soils and importantly climate, the wines are interesting to contrast and compare! Again, all seemed to disappear with smiles!

A delicious Crema Catalan and coffee/tea polished off the evening.

Comments received…

I just wanted to thank you both for a wonderful Wine and Tapas evening at Nik’s restaurant the wine, of course, was excellent, and the food fantastic.  

The whole evening was very enjoyable and indeed, educational.  I found your talks about each of the wines interesting and informative.

Check out the full details of all the wines served at this event 

The Old Greenhouse offers an intimate dining venue for up to 16 guests. Unlike a restaurant, Nik is only open for pre booked tables, to find out more visit their website.