Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Urepel Restaurant Review: A Touch of Modern in San Sebastian

We were starting to get a little tired of pintxos and wanted a more relaxing sit-down meal after a day of walking, so we dropped by Urepel Restaurant at the edge of Parte Vieja for dinner on Monday night.  We didn't have a reservation but were fortunately seated immediately; the restaurant was pretty much completely full by the time we left, a testament to the wonderful food and warm service. We both ordered the 50 euro prix fixe which included a bottle of wine and glass of cava, which was a really good deal, considering the intricacy of some of the dishes.  Both Urepel and Bodegon Alejandro were some of the best meals we've ever had; Z preferred Urepel while I preferred Bodegon Alejandro.  In any case, I thought some of the dishes at Urepel were outstanding.
Amuse bouche: beautiful salmon on toast. I'm guessing the sauce was shellfish sauce.  Lovely.
Tomato and prawn appetizer; good but not memorable
Warm yogurt "salad" with Iberian ham, egg, truffle (I think), and potato, with asparagus tempura and two fries.  I loooooved this dish; every warm bite was like heaven, just so rich, creamy and decadent.
With the tightly sealed foil cap (just like yogurt), peeled back
Lightly breaded monkfish over a very delicate tapioca / jelly sauce with caramelized onions in squid ink.  The textures and combination of flavors of the garnishes were delightful, although the monkfish itself was a bit boring
Two cubes of suckling pig over potatoes with some black cherries. Another amazing dish; the pig was so tender, juicy and deliciously porky.  The potatoes were richly creamy and the cherries offered nice tartness to offset everything
Dessert: strawberries, kiwi, mango and pomegranates over some custard and crushed cookies with a little chocolate.  Very pretty plate, just not my favorite dessert
Excellent bottle of Verdejo, an unusual white wine, with our meal
The room was bizarre; looked like a fusty old-fashioned, Laura Ashley grandma parlor. Rather clashed with the cuisine, but the food managed to outshine the decor
And then you have this random flower sculpture
Urepel Restaurant
Paseo Salamanca, 3
San Sebastian

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