Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Cool Food

After a long week at the office I wanted to relax a bit on my Saturday.  I also didn't spend much so I thought I'd maybe splurge and go out to a nicer restaurant and try some fun foods.  After looking through my guide book and taking some local suggestions I decided on comocomo.  This is a tapas bar that takes a huge influence from restaurants in Japan.
COMOCOMO is Spanish for "how do I eat," which is fun to say.  The Restaurant serves Pintxos is explained as different from tapas because they are meant to be eaten with your fingers.  What this really means is that they put something normally eaten with a fork, onto a small piece of bread.  This doesn't necessarily work with all the dishes but I mentioned a Japanese influence, this occurs in the delivery (not the bread).  The entire restaurant is like one big bar that wraps around.  What makes it unique is the conveyor belt that also weaves its way around the space.  I went for lunch, I've learned this is the best time to try great restaurants, and was luckily placed right in front of the chef.  He spoke English and was very helpful with the dishes.  The idea is that the chef prepares a bunch of small colored plates of food and places them on the conveyor.  The colors represent a category of food (black = meat for example) and you pay based on how many dishes you've consumed by the end of the meal.  This is commonplace in sushi restaurants in Japan and the system is almost exactly the same.  Pay per dish, at COMOCOMO they have set rates for 3-6-9 dishes and any extra dish is 2 euro.
A quick run down:  1. Pork, Bacon & Potatoes, 2. Quail breast & Mint, 3. Sobressada, Cheese & Honey, 4. Manchego, Honey & Quince, 5. Quail Leg & Star Anise, 6. Lamb Rib & Rosemary, 7. Frog Legs & Sesame.  By far the most memorable dishes of the night were the Sobressada with Cheese and Honey, the Quail Leg with Star Anise and the Quail Breast with Mint.  The rest were very very good, but seemed like something I may cook for myself... pedestrian dishes.  Before the good is the bad: the Frog Legs weren't great mainly because the sesame completely over powered the frog itself, I was basically eating a sesame chip with a little bit of frog.  Also, the lamb rib with rosemary... it was good and is a classic pairing.  Instead the dish needed to be considered a Pinxtos (eat with your hands) so they put it on a piece of bread.  It still has a rib in it.  You can't eat it with a piece of bread underneath.  The redeeming quality was that I watched the chef cook the lamb dish start to finish.
Ok, Sobressada is a Majorcan (Spanish island) pork sausage and with this dish it looked to be taken out of its casing and just used as a ground spiced pork.  The cheese was... unnecessary but the key to the dish was the honey.  The contrast between the spice of the paprika and pork and the sweetness of the honey was beautiful.  I could have eaten seven plates of that one dish and been very happy.  The Quail Breast & Mint was nice.  I'm pretty sure the mint was put into a yogurt or mayonnaise, but the absolute subtlety of the cool sweetness was very refreshing on a nicely cooked savory quail breast.  I liked the Quail with Star Anise because it was a slightly different take on the chicken drumstick that I've had so many different ways.  The flavor of the dish seemed very Indian, but much simpler, I imagined that star anise is a major portion of the spice within a curry based dish.
The food was but one part of the journey.  I got to sit and watch a chef prepare a huge portion of appetizer portions and he explained each one as he placed them on the conveyor belt for me.  I spent an hour and a half drinking some wine, watching him cook and tasting some small plates.  For under 20 Euros... I wonder if a certain uncle of mine would care to comment on the idea as this post is mainly for him.  I want to try some more interesting places about... apparently Horse Steaks are relatively popular here so maybe I'll try to find one.


  1. It's saint patrick's day!!!! That means two things: green beer and irish soda bread, like we're enjoying right now! Though I guess a Horse Steak would suffice...uhh...

    -James and Shanna

  2. Well, I guess i'm compelled to respond, eh? I've seen the conveyor belt system in oriental concepts (in Asia) and I love the idea of eating small plates...and, anything with pork and lamb is good! Exhibition cooking is always fun when a chef/cook is preparing right in front of you! It was probably a good stroke of luck that he spoke English. That also sounds like a good price(20Euro). Any foie gras yet???

  3. it suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks