Barrafina has been my favourite tapas restaurant since the first visit, clearly everyone in London think so too. The queue forms as soon as the bar like restaurant opens at 12 for lunch and 5 for dinner. No reservation is allowed but the sister restaurant Fino does and I’ve heard the menus are similar. Everything on the menu is good, the highest quality with the freshest ingredients, particular the daily seafood specials. I’ve had great tiger prawns here, simply cooked and drizzled with oil, even my prawn allergic friend wanted them badly. In terms of the classics, perfectly textured tortilla, not dry or too heavy, tons of flavour that pours out as soon as it’s sliced open.
Normally, I dislike anything that requires a queue, therefore I still haven’t been to any of the burger joints or Bubbledog and Burger & Lobster. Also the reason that I don’t visit Barrafina on a regular basis. But this place doesn’t feel rushed, the queue forms quickly with people leaning against the narrow walkway chatting away with drinks, but the staff aren’t hurried to shoo you away. They just mind their own business, trying to get the dishes out and make sure everyone is being served. But if you don’t want to queue, get there at 5 for dinner and 12 for lunch.
It’s a noisy place with little room space but the buzz makes it Soho while the food makes it an additive place to be.
Heritage tomato salad
I thought the yellow slices were peppers, turned out to be very large tomato slices soaked in plenty of oil. I’d prefer with less oil but the flavour was fresh rather than heavy.
Razor clams - daily special
Not a lot of seasoning to maintain the most essential favours and very fresh
I really loved the small potatoes with light onion flavours. The chorizos were good but a bit too salty.
The best tortilla anywhere, perfectly textured with such a great flavour.
Still lightly pink with rich flavours and ton of oil to soak the potatoes.
I thought these were stuffed with cheese, like the ones from Dehesa with sweet honey flavours. But it was actually stuffed with prawns, with savoury tomato flavours. Very good and didn’t feel oily.
Verdict - 4/5
Food (best tapas in London) - one of the best tapas in London no matter which dish you order. The seafood tapas is particularly fresh and the tortilla is the best you’ll find.
Service (very busy) - forever busy with a constant queue. Make sure to get there as soon as it opens at 12 for lunch or 5 for dinner. The staff are friendly and won’t hassle you away despite of the queue.
Cost (£25pp) - we didn’t order any alcoholic drinks and these tapas dishes billed £50
54 Frith Street London,
W1D 4SL,020 7813 8016