Another catch up session with my awesome eating companion sees us at the door step of La Bodequita del Medio, in the heart of the city on York Street, opposite the QVB. My friend’s sister raved on about the place so it was only nautral for us to see for ourselves what it was all about.
I have to admit before going to dinner I did my research and visited the LBDM website to see what food was on offer. There’s a bar menu and a restaurant menu. Initially we had agreed on the bar menu as we felt like we could just have a greater selection of dishes to share since so many of them sounded great. Upon arrival, the bar was completely packed out and so we took a seat at the restaurant.
Please note that the menus are subject to change. I dined here in late June and seems the menu has been updated since. (I’m kicking myself because I completely forgot the name of one of the dishes we ordered.)
L to R: Mojito $14 and Nojito $6.50
We begin the evening with some drinks. LBDM are known for their mojitos so my friend couldn’t go passed ordering one (check our their extensive cocktail list here). I didn’t want to miss out just because I was driving so I went for the mocktail version – the nojito ;)
LBDM is apparently the “home of the mojito” and I don’t doubt that. It is definitely one of the better mojitos I’ve had (yes, I couldnt’ help but have a sip). Everything was in perfect balance – the lime, the mint, the sugar, the soda and the rum. Absolutely delicious. I can so totally see myself going back for another when I’m not a designated driver…. or go for two.. or maybe three. Even the nojito was a delight to drink.
Sadly this is the dish I cannot recall the name of. It was the first of 3 entrees we decided to share. It was deep fried squid that had a crumb like batter, served with a thick tomatoe-y sauce and baby carrots. The squid itself was a little bit tougher than I usually would like but was still a treat to eat. The sauce on the tile looks ordinary but definitely packed a punch with flavour. The baby carrots had a flavour which niether of us could pin point what it was. It was a flavour we were familar with but it was just stuck on the tip of our tongue.
We were most excited to try the taquitos which were highly recommended. I don’t even know what a taquito is but I just kept saying the word because it sounds awesome. A deep fried tortilla basket is filled with green tomatillos, bell peppers and mantecoso cheese. The spicy mayo sauce on top was delicious. Eaten together it is amazing, eaten seperate is amazing. It’s a win win situation. A favourite amongst us both, and would be happy to return to just eat the taquitossss! (Had a look and its not on the current menu – oh how sad!)
Panceta de Cerdo $17
Our third and final entree is the roasted pork belly with compressed watermelon and white balsamic foam. It was one plump and juicy piece of pork belly which was going to be an issue sharing amongst two. Thankfully for us, there were scores on the skin which helped us to break it into two portions. The skin makes a cracking sound as I cut into it and thats when my friend and I look up to each other and smile. The pork belly itself was super juicy and tender, with a perfect skin crackling on top (we both saved that bit for last). The heavy meat paired well with the watermelon which provided freshness, and the balsamic foam which gave acidity.
Pollito Picante $32
We order the special for the evening which is a spiced spatchcock with chargrilled corn and fresh mango salsa. Looks like it has now made the regular dinner menu. It is a dry spice rub on the spatchcock which I initially thought was charcoal (oops). It gave the spatchcock so much flavour whilst the flesh itself was still tender and moist. The fresh mango salsa was simply amazing. It was so good that we started scraping off every little bit on the board.
Dessert time! We put in an order of the Sweet Spring dessert which at the time should have included red velvet cake, rose marshmellows and a fruity sorbet, similar to the one on Love My Foods & Sugar, however we received the above. We were both confused as we were trying to figure out what component was what as compared to what was on the menu. There were fresh fruits, passionfruit jelly and a rice pudding – a combination that just didn’t work for me, but we ate it anyway. I asked the waiter what we got exactly and even then there was a bit of confusion. I let her know that the dessert we received was not what we ordered but she came back to say that the dessert we wanted was currently unavailable. I wasn’t impressed at all. It would have been nice if the staff had let us know that the dessert we chose was not available so we could have chosen something else, instead of not being advised and being given something we did not order.
Overall it was good feed (pre dessert). I would definitely return to try some of the dishes on the bar menu. Looks like it would be great sharing plates over a mojito or two.