What are tapas? Tapas are a wide variety of appetizers, or snacks, in Spanish cuisine which can be cold or hot. When it comes to Spanish restaurant, I already have a favorite in Dubai but it’s always exciting to try new ones or ones I’ve never been to before. I want to be surprised!
We head out to Salero Tapas and Bodega, located at Kempinski Hotel at the Mall of the Emirates. It’s hidden at the end of the hall on the ground floor of the Kempinski, so the location is quite tricky but the hotel is accessible from the mall which is an advantage for me and the mall, in turn is accessible by the metro.
Once inside, I already liked the atmosphere – rustic, intimate but not too stuffy. It combines a restaurant and a bar atmosphere which together with the ambiance and the whole set up makes it a really pleasant and fun place to be for a date of meetup with friends. The counter bar is the perfect spot to see the how the paellas and tapas are prepared.
The tapas menu is extensive which is both a good and bad thing (bad in a good way..). Good because there are so many options and bad because you can get confused what to order. The price of tapas range from 40-60 dhs each but Salero has a promotion deal of AED95 for 3 tapas (hot or cold).
What we ordered: Caramelized goat cheese salad, fried eggplant (tempura style) drizzled with cane honey, traditional andalusian vegetable cassoulet, egg and Idiazabal cheese. All highly recommended!
There’s also pork in the menu. We ordered the Chorizo y salchichon iberico (Spanish cured Iberian cuts). These were really full of flavor but I suppose this would go well with an alcoholic drink but I did not have any so couldn’t comment on the possible effect of that accompaniment.
We were expecting the tapas dishes to be smaller, but were pleasantly surprised by the generous size of it, and filled ourselves up so much so that we didn’t have any room for the main dish or for dessert! But for the sake of this review, we could not pass up on ordering paella. Salero changes its paella menu everyday and that time, it was seafood paella but we’re all allergic to seafood so we requested for a chicken paella (small plate).
Yeah, that’s a small plate in Salero standards. It was more than enough for 3 of us! Salero Paella of the day is 80 dhs. I say a good price for the quality and the quantity, especially after all those tapas and bread earlier.
All the food we had were good and certainly enjoyed our quiet time at Salero (we were there for an early lunch on a weekend and there weren’t that many diners). I’ve never been to Spain (that should change soon!) but the paella I had at Salero pleased my palate and got me to paella nirvana after only a few spoonfuls.
Great service, ambiance that I like – the only downside would be is that there are no windows. If you can go past that, I would highly recommend that you go to Salero Tapas and Bodega with a group of 4-5 friends so you can share and try out as many of the tapas as possible. I heard their Friday brunch and Flamenco nights is a must try too.