La Boqueria, an all-day eatery in Jozi, has just opened and takes its inspiration from iconic food markets, such as London’s Borough Market and Barcelona’s La Boqueria on Las Ramblas. From the team that brought you Frankie IIII Fingers beer and local favourite, The Foundry, in Parktown North, just a few doors down the road is La Boqueria. The menu is mostly Spanish, but darts from one corner of the globe to another to encapsulate delicious market-style food; all of the dishes are about sharing and feasting. The focus is on traditional styles of cooking, (using skillets, wood ovens and live-fires) for a real food experience. The term ‘eat with your eyes first’ definitely applies here.
The lunch and dinner menu runs the gauntlet from healthy (Peruvian ceviche) to fried (street food style finger food such as Samosas, Bhajhias and Patatas Bravas) and more. The Paellas are slow- cooked, in a traditional hearth for a delicious, smoky flavour. Some of the highlights off the Coals menu are the 500g rib-eye on the bone and the Whole Fish Talay but don’t leave without trying the Kabobs – lamb, chicken, beef or pork belly – skewered, marinated overnight and grilled on the coals to maximise the flavour. For dessert, take your pick from Churros, GinTonic Tart, Whoopie Pie and more street sweets.
The décor takes inspiration from the mid-century with a warm colour palette, a mix of wooden furniture, and cabinetry behind the bar, used as display units. The über-cool décor features are undoubtedly the salvaged 1950’s orange post-boxes and Lady Boqueria, a 6 meter high mural of a Spanish torero, who watches over the whole space. At once cosy and welcoming, the space has different sections: tables and booths, a dedicated bar area and the upstairs where you can hide away or have a private function. The floor-to-ceiling windows mean that the space is sun-drenched for most of the day and still gives you the feeling of sidewalk eating into the evening, much loved throughout The Parks. The outside veranda with its pergola and fireplace in the corner is a fabulous all-year-round spot to while away your time.
The bar focuses on some of best small and boutique South African wine farms – with an emphasis on natural and biodynamic wines. An ever-changing weekly small batch wine list champions up-and-coming winemakers, but there are other tipples and aperitifs to take your fancy. So bring your loved ones and pull up a chair… all day long. You can look at spending anything between R250-R300 for 2.