London: Basque casual dining at Lurra
Spanish cuisine doesn't always have to be about tapas, as the north Basque country has so much more to offer than that. And if you really want to be accurate then tapas are more of pinchos around the Basque country and apparently now in London too. Lurra is the second brainchild of the Donostia restaurant owners that has recently attracted some attention. Here is why!
Nemanja Borjanovic and Melody Adams opted for a larger venture than Donostia just across the street offering some delicate artful Basque dishes, including squid stuffed with prawns and chorizo. When we first visited this year, we came out wanting more, as dishes are kind of small and expensive... but their delicate taste still lingers!
Lurra, Basque for “land”, opened in late 2015 with a whitewashed dinning room -dimly lit- and marble-topped, with pale wooden furniture and pistachio-green upholstery selected by Adams. A shelf of design books at the back and upstairs adds a homey touch, while the brass balustrade leading up the oak staircase adds another elegant posh touch. The menu is filled with all sorts of options, ranging from small dishes of meat, sea and vegetables to large sharing plates. Nonetheless, options are kind of limited which is what makes it better. The kitchen staff go like clockwork about running the show downstairs where all of the action takes place.
Their signature dish, a 14oz Galician Prime Rib steak, is a succulent piece of beef sliced up perfectly and enough to cater for more than just one person. Some starters to go with are definitely the classic small-sized Padron peppers, as well as the artichokes dish with marinated anchovies and the yuzu infused prawns. Other than that, the chef always keeps something up his sleeve as fresh produce comes plenty and doesn't necessarily get on the menu - so you should be prepared to ask your waiter! Thank God we did and, hence, got to enjoy some fresh quince. And, oh yeah, their crispy paprika sprinkled fries!
Desserts were not bad either - we tried the Spanish flan and some pineapple sorbet to soften our palate from the grilled meat. But we are definitely coming back for some more (meat tat is!).