Sunday, October 27, 2013

Lunch at Cúrate with a friend is a splendid way to do lunch!

I stopped by Cúrate for lunch with a friend, the Traveling Wine Chick recently and as usual had a remarkable meal.  It’s always nice to catch up with friends over a little food and beverage.  I get to celebrate two of my interests at the same time.

This particular lunch went long since we had some serious catching up to do.  She is working up an all new and exciting career for herself and I had to find out the details.  Of course, my realm is ever changing so there’s plenty to talk about there too for those that want to listen – haha. 

It’s Cúrate so of course we shared our plates of tapas, taking pictures and notes as we went.  Foodies, what can you do with’em!?

We began with the pan con tomate with Manchego cheese ($7.) which is a tasty way to get the juices flowing.  This is thick toasted bread with fresh tomato, olive oil and topped with slices of Manchego cheese.  It has a rustic look and taste to it and is very good.

Next we tried the table de jamón ($18.).  A selection of three cured Spanish hams sliced paper thin providing a savory walk through subtleties of Spain.  All three are very marbled but the character intensifies with each.
Jamón Serrano fermín – dry cured Spanish ham.  Almost silky ham with light flavor that can be easily paired with many ingredients.
Jamón Ibérico fermin – cured ham from the famous black-footed Ibérico pigs of Spain.  The flavor profile deepens with this ham yet it is very approachable.
Jamón Ibérico de bellota 5J – 100% pure Ibérico pigs, acorn fattened and free range.  The marbling melts in your mouth and the taste of the ham has a unique nutty character that may be too strong for the feint of palate – truly a work of art.

We then tried the pimientos de piquillo con quesso de cabra ($8.) which are three Piquillo peppers stuffed with Spanish goat cheese.  This is a savory pepper, not a hot one.  These peppers will be gone before you know it, very tasty!

Since this was Beth’s first time I thought we would introduce her to the most popular item on the menu, gambas al ajillo ($11.), sautéed shrimp and sliced garlic.  I love just about anything with garlic and the flavor of these sautéed shrimp really are heightened in this dish.  This one is a no-brainer.

We finished with cerdo ibérico a las finas hierbas ($20.) – grilled 100% pure ibérico pork “skirt steak” with fresh rosemary and thyme.  It has a very simple presentation but the OH, the taste!  While salty, this grilled pork steak was tender and mouthwateringly delectable.  One of the best pork dishes that I’ve ever eaten with just the right touch of rosemary and thyme, not to overwhelm but to accent it seamlessly.

When in Spain, drink Spanish wine and beer.  I was pleased to launch my friend into a little of both.  A glass of Licia Albariño from the Rías Baixas region of Spain was a nice opener.  But the Estrella Damm Daura ($5.) on draft was what really hit the spot for me during this lunch.  A Spanish lager that’s golden with amber notes, it’s clean and smells bright with hints of fresh spice.  It tastes smooth with a touch of white spice and toasted cereals.  The fresh acidity amid a touch of bitterness on the finish is very refreshing.

Good friends, good food and good wine and beer – now that’s a lunch, foodie style.

Contact Information
Cúrate bar de tapas
(828) 239-2946
11 Biltmore Ave
Asheville, North Carolina 28801

Cúrate on Urbanspoon

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