If you have been living in a tapas deprived cave for some time, then a croqueta is a thick, creamy white sauce which is chilled, rolled into a ball, breaded and deep fried. The result? A crisp outer layer which explodes with oozy goodness upon biting into it.
I dare you to find me one single person who doesn’t like croquetas, and even if you do, they will convert after they sample the selection they have on offer at Sandinista.
The specials plate contains croquetas of varying fillings and variations such as Serrano ham, chicken, Spanish cheese and salted cod. The latter is a delicacy in Spain so make sure you give this one a try for the entire authentic experience.
The next special is Pulpo A La Gallega which is not for the squeamish. The plate is made up of grilled octopus (suckers and all) cooked Galician style with potatoes, capers, extra virgin olive oil and Pimenton de la Vera DOP paprika. You get only the best over at Sandinista.
We enjoyed the Migas De Aragon which is said to be a staple bar snack to chow down on along with some chilled beers. It is formed of chorizo, bacon and leftover nuggets of white bread that are fried together. The bread soaks up all that lovely oil and makes the dish the perfect thing to shovel in your mouth without thinking. We’ll take ten, please.
The standard tortilla over at Sandinista is worth mentioning in itself, but when they added Manchego cheese to it and popped it on the specials, I thought I had died and gone to heaven.
While we are on cheese, the standout star of the whole experience had to be the Tabla De Quesos Regionales (or board of regional Spanish cheeses). First, there was Mahon– a soft white cows cheese named from the port town of the same name on the Spanish island of Menorca. There was also Murcia al Vino goat’s milk cheese made with red wine and Valle de Navarra from the Pyrenees.
Picos Blue had to be the favourite though. This cheese is ripened in vine leaves which gives it a pale complexion and a soft texture which melts in the mouth. All in all, this board was a fantastic way to taste your way across Spain as indeed is the whole menu.
Sandinista, 2 Old Bank St, City Centre, Manchester M2 7PF
0161 832 9955