Culinary Causerie

with Editor Lesley Williams

Tapas Night @ The New Gower Hotel

What could be better than sitting in the early evening sun with good friends and good food? It’s something I’ve come to appreciate even more after we were denied the opportunity for so many months. The New Gower Hotel is a very hospitable venue – you don’t have to be a resident to be made to feel very welcome by its crew of young staff. I don’t know if it was because the sun was shining, but they were all smiling.

Many of you will have read our regular contributor Private Chef Christos’ recipes in the past year or so, and some of you have enjoyed having him come and cook for you in your home. Christos also has pop up restaurants in various venues across the city and he’s just added The New Gower Hotel to his list. Every Wednesday evening you can experience tapas dishes and small plates from International cuisines, all using local produce wherever possible.

We managed to bag a table at the inaugural evening at the end of June, and were joined by good friends. The New Gower Hotel has a beautiful veranda that faces west so benefits from the evening sunshine, the comfortable garden furniture made it the perfect location for enjoying a chilled glass of Sauvignon Blanc while we chose from the menu.

The beauty of tapas or small plates is that they are designed for sharing. I must admit that the older I get the less I like having a full plate of food put in front of me. I prefer to graze and pick out the best bits.

Christos had selected  some cuts of meat that require very long slow cooking – beef cheeks cooked overnight until the meat melted in the mouth, and pork cheeks with a red wine jus. One of my favourite vegetables is aubergine, and the Caponata alla Siciliana is definitely going to be on my recipe list for my next barbeque. Aubergines cooked with pine nuts, Kalamata olives and raisins – the slight resininess of pine nuts countered the sweetness of the raisins. Every tapas selection has to include chorizo in some way, here it was braised in Welsh cider – again the sweetness of the cider was balanced with the spice of the sausage.

We finished off with a chocolate fondant and a deconstructed lemon meringue pie, which with four spoons didn’t last very long.

Christos will be bringing his tapas menu, which will be changing frequently, to the hotel every Wednesday and booking is essential. Look out too for his Sunday Lunch once a month at the hotel. More details can be found on his Facebook page and that of the New Gower Hotel.

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Facebook www.facebook.com/NewGowerHotel

 

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