La Falda, a cheeky new wine bar and restaurant in Lavapiés

Thai-style octopus sandwich

When a restaurant welcomes me with a wine list featuring labels like ‘The Madman’s Inn’ and ‘The Perfect Boyfriend’, I’m intrigued. When they accompany it with a quality Thai-Spanish tapa and Motown, I’m hooked.

A deliciously smooth glass of Delito Garnacha

A deliciously smooth glass of Delito Garnacha

La Falda de Lavapiés is just the kind of tongue-in-cheek tavern that the neighborhood needs, offering quirky bites and a one-of-a-kind wine list to the wide variety of patrons that Calle Miguel Servet attracts. I’ve stopped in for a bite a few times since it opened in early October, and each time the menu, which only features about ten dishes, has been edited to include the week’s freshest ingredients. Aside from the ever-evolving menu, they also feature a distinctive menú del día plus daily specials that range from ramen to callos, highlighting the kind of international versatility that is all too often hard to find in Madrid.

On my most recent visit, we were offered secreto ibérico in sweet and sour sauce as our free aperitivo as we browsed the menu. The Thai flavors and fantastic cut of Spanish pork paired nicely with the Delito Garnacha wine we had chosen, and by the time we waved down the waitress to order, our appetites were more than piqued.

We chose four small plates to share between the two of us, testing La Falda’s version of the Spanish classics of jamón croquettes and cured beef, or cecina, and their ability to fuse Castillian products with Asian flair in their pork spring rolls and octopus sandwich.

Mouth-wateringly marbled cecina

Mouth-wateringly marbled cecina

Vietnamese pork spring rolls

Vietnamese pork spring rolls

The cecina was some of the best I’ve tried in Madrid, and I consider myself something of a cured beef expert, ordering it any time I spot it on a menu. While all of the flavors were impeccable, the winner had to be the octopus sandwich with its mixture of Thai herbs and Spanish paprika.

Thai-style octopus sandwich

Thai-style octopus sandwich

We only stopped ooh-ing and ah-ing over each bite to sing along with the Motown greats that enveloped the room, and reluctantly put our forks down to watch in awe as the couple next to us jumped up to ballroom dance to James Brown’s “It’s a Man’s World.”

La Falda is the perfect example of what makes Lavapiés so special: it puts quality at the forefront and serves its food with a wink, but recognizes that in the end, it’s only a space for the vibrant community to enjoy life, and does everything it can to facilitate that. Go for a drink or go for a date. Go, eat, watch the people and leave content in mind, body and soul.

Info

  • Facebook
  • Address: Calle Miguel Servet 4 (Metro Lavapies or Embajadores)
  • Phone: 911 688 096

 

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