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It’s Always A Celebration At Bar Pintxos Tapas Y Mas

1 month ago

For most seasoned restaurateurs, location, location, location is everything. When one is thinking about opening a restaurant, it is common knowledge that one of the biggest reasons a restaurant fails, is a poor location. But, such is definitely not the case for, Bar Pintxos Tapas y Mas, which is tucked at the back of an office building, located on a street that one can only access thru the West service road that connects Sucat to Alabang. This hidden gem of a restaurant that opened last June 2015 was easily one of last year’s best new restaurant openings, which attracted a loyal clientele base early on from its immediate neighborhood, once regarded as a culinary wasteland, while at the same time attracting food lovers from far flung areas to make a pilgrimage down South, just for a taste of its food.

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Long time business partners and Bar Pinxtos’ owners, Miguel “Migs” Vecin and Martin “Tinchu” Gonzalez, shared that is was a sweet offer presented to them by their current landlord, to take over an existing cafe space, on the same building that also houses their 15 year old food business, Tierra de Espana (a food distribution company that sells mostly Spanish deli products) that led them to finally open their own restaurant.

Pintxo or pintxos, is like a smaller Basque cousin of Spanish tapas, mostly small bites that are usually meant to be eaten with a drink, standing-up. Eating this Basque-style tapas or snacks is somewhat considered a traditional activity in the Basque country or the Northern region of Spain, where Miguel (who also serves as the main culinary director of Bar Pintxos) lived, when he was a kid, before moving back to Manila in his 30’s. Bar Pintxos was envisioned to be like one of the casual neighborhood joints in Spain that Miguel used to frequent—chill, laidback, gastro bars, where one can enjoy some good food with their drinks, at any given time.

On the menu, simply, amazing food

The Bar Pintxos menu consist of around a dozen regular items with an additional special dish or two, usually added on the chalkboard, featuring some seasonal or experimental dishes that are all inspired by Miguel’s travels to Spain, where some of his relatives still reside, which means there is always something new to try.

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Always on the menu, are Gildas, a traditional mainstay in the tapas bars in Spain that is a simple assembly of good quality anchovy, chillies and a green pitted olive, skewered on a stick.

On its very, popular (approximately two-bites) pintxos menu that is usually served on bread, are must-order items, like its numero uno bestseller, Jamon Aioli. An ordinary looking pintxos, made with shredded jamon serrano bits mixed with house made aioli that is dangerously addicting. It is almost impossible to eat just one of this.

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For those with more adventurous palates, more indulgent options includes: the Salmon pintxos with caviar and truffle honey, the Boquerones (marinated fresh anchovies) topped with uni and caviar, and the Mar I Muntanya, which is uni (sea urchin) and lardo (back fat salami) torched with lomo Iberico or dry cured pork loin.

Lighter or healthier choices includes: the Chatka a typical Spanish pintxos made with kani crab, aioli, and baby gherkins; and the Escalivada or pintxos made of smoky, grilled vegetables.

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For those with bigger appetites, are new meaty additions like the Bomba Picante, chopped chorizo, wrapped in mashed potatoes before it is breaded then fried, served with salsa brava or hot sauce and the incredibly tender Beef Cheeks, cooked in red wine sauce then finished with a mushroom cream topping.

Seafood lovers must try the Boquerones Calientes, marinated fresh anchovies cooked in warm olive oil and finished with crispy garlic and the crowd favourite, Calamares ala Plancha, or perfectly grilled squid served on top of roasted garlic purée, finished with parsley oil.

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Bikini sandwich lovers can also try Bar Pinxtos’ take on the Catalan classic ham and cheese sandwich, a much sexier version, made with brioche bread, filled with jamon serrano, goat cheese, pickled apples, and membrillo or quince paste.

For dessert, a selection of premium quality chocolates made from locally sourced cacao, from Risa’s Chocolates, are sure to please.

It’s also a bar with legit drinks

For the best experience, do not forget to also explore the Bar Pintxos drinks menu and go beyond the usual sangria and try their selection of whisky, craft beers like the Pinxtos’ Pale Ale by Crow’s and its collection of small batch gin that you can enjoy on its own or in gin and tonic form, complete with the proper garnishes.

Spain may be a hundred miles away but with Bar Pintxos, you get to have the same excellent Spanish tapas and pintxos experience with just a simple drive down south.

WE RECOMMEND:

Salmon (P180)

Boquerones (P150)

Mar I Muntanya (P200)

Chatka (P50)

Escalivada (P55)

Bomba Picante (P90)

Beef Cheeks (P480)

Boquerones Calientes (P200)

Calamares ala Plancha (P400)

Bikini (P230)

Bar Pintxos Tapas y Mas.G/F, Gesu Building, Don Jesus Boulevard, Cupang, Muntinlupa City. Call (02) 831-0065

Words by Cyrene Dela Rosa

Photographed by Miguel Abesamis of Studio 100

Art direction by Yllaine Sabenecio

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