This was a last minute decision as we were unable to make a booking at Flowerdrum, but MoVida Bar de Tapas turned out to be a pretty good consolation prize in deed! The restaurant actually doesn't take phone bookings, but instead, you can walk in and wait for a table at the bar. If you want to get seated quickly, it's probably best if you come earlier as the restaurant got fairly busy soon after we sat down (we were there around 6:15pm).
MoVida Bar de Tapas - Business card ~ so funky!
How can we eat at a Spanish restaurant without firstly order a Sangria! This was made fresh in house and we had the option of ordering a 500ml jug. But we decided to order one glass each, just to try. Nice and refreshing and not too alcoholic.
We ordered several dishes to share. They were all delicious to say the least and it was so hard to pick a favourite. But I think the duck liver parfait won in the end; this is exactly my type of dish. The duck liver parfait was savoury with a strong, but pleasant duck liver taste. You really have to eat it with the pedro ximenez foam (which was sweet, with texture similar to tofu, but fluffier and without the soy bean taste) because the sweet and savoury tastes from the two things mixed together was just heavenly when it hits your taste buds. The brioche tasted like they were freshly toasted and so crispy. Yum!
Higado de pato - duck liver parfait with pedro ximenez foam and toasted brioche.
I always have to order the scallop dish on the menu, as I absolutely love these little babies, and when cooked well, they are just a delight to devour. MoVida has done this dish quite well. The scallops were nicely seared and the inside was still slightly opaque and just undercooked, which gave the scallops a lovely 'melt in your mouth' texture. Loved how it came with so much veggies too!
Essalada a Rusa Con Veira - pan seared Canadian scallops with Russian salad of carrots, potato, peas and piquillo pepper
More seafood- Monte Y Mar, which was a pork stuffed calamari with squid ink dressing. This was actually quite small, but enough to leave you feeling satisfied. The calamari was again cooked nicely (not one bit chewy at all) and the pork was seasoned with some herbs, giving it a distinct taste.
Monte Y Mar- pork stuffed calamari with squid ink dressing
Next came our pork dish - a slow cooked pork jowl (pork cheek!) with fennel and Borlotti beans. I actually only found out later that this was pork cheek so wasn't sure how the texture should have been like. But it was really soft, and kind of broke apart with we pushed our forks into the meat. I thought this could have been seasoned better though, as it tasted a bland for me.
Cerdo Con Habas - slow cooked pork jowl with fennel and Borlotti beans
I was drawn to the name of this dish more than anything - "Miguel" is such a sexy name (reminiscing back to my high school days when I would rush home to watch 'Passions' on TV Channel 10 at 3:30pm, haha!) so I had to order it. It turned out to be really nice! The chicken was mixed with what tasted like a creamy sauce with shallots and different spices. I really loved that crunch from the croutons and it was kind of cool eating it like a small sandwich. ha!
Pollo Escabache Al Miguel - spiced chicken escabache tapa on crisp crouton
Croqueta filled with Jamon and egg. Did you know Jamon is actually 'ham' in Spanish! So essentially it was a ham and egg croqueta. This was sooo delicious as it was nice and crispy on the outside, with the filling just oozing out of the croqueta as soon as we took a bite in this little gem. We should have ordered at least two for each person! Oh well, what a great excuse to come back again for more Tapas!
Croqueta- Fried silk croqueta flavoured with Jamon and egg
Time for dessert! I must say their dessert menu wasn't very extensive, but it had the main thing that I wanted to order...Churros! I was so sad to hear that our local Spanish deli had closed down and I had been craving some churros ever since. The churros were nice and crunchy with a tiny bit of sugar sprinkled on top. But surprisingly, it was the chocolate dipping soup that stood out the most! It was mildly sweet and had a thick, consistency - imagine a warm thick milo mousse? We almost drank the whole pot of it once we had finished dipping the churros. Mmmmm. You really have to try it to understand how unbelievably good this tastes.
Churros with chocolate dipping soup
MoVida Bar de Tapas is definitely the place to go for some good quality, Spanish Tapas at a reasonable price. The place has a lovely casual feel to it and would be the perfect place to meet up with a few friends to catch up over a glass (or two!) of Sangria, along with some darn good tapas! This place is definitely worth a visit when you're in Melbourne!