La Tasca (Regent Street)300 Regent Street
The restaurant is pretty cosy with the lights turned down, candles lit at every table and fiesta-like Spanish music playing in the background - a nice setting to a casual dinner with some good friends.
We could order as much as we liked from a selection of tapas, a smaller selection than what is on the usual menu. Naturally, the first round entailed everything on the menu. The tapas came in much larger than typical servings at a time to accommodate our party of 16.
Berenjenas Gratinadas - fresh aubergine topped with tomates and cheese and one of the favourites. The melted cheese and tomatoes were excellent complements to the soft aubergine.
Paella de Verduras - a vegetarian paella with seasonal vegetables. The paella dishes were rather dry although the vegetarian paella was better than the seafood paella. So far, the seafood paella at the Brick Lane Sunday Market remains unbeaten.
Tortilla Espanola - Spanish-style potato and onion omelette.
After three rounds of tapas, we were so full we couldn't move. Some of the favourites of the night include the Dominic-dominated Albondigas a la Jardinera (meatballs in tomato sauce), the Champinones al Ajillo (mushrooms, lightly sauteed in garlic and olive oil ) that kept Qiu Jhin coming back for more, the Calamares Andaluza (seasoned squid rings served with garlic mayonaise and lemon) which was Ju Vern's personal favourite and the Pescado Blanco Frito (deep-fried white fish in San Miguel batter) which always seemed to disappear in a blink of an eye.
We had been at the table for a good two and a half hours - milking every minute of the promotion. We would probably have ordered more if not for the rather slow service - in typical student fashion of trying to make sure we ate every penny's worth. I have to say though, that most of us felt like we had eaten that and much more.
As always, dinner is never really complete without dessert.
This time, it came in the form of the adorable Harry the Hedgehog, a sinfully delicious moist chocolate cake from M&S. It looked almost to good to eat....almost.
La Tasca has pretty good tapas and for only 10 pounds, it's about as value-for-money as one can get. The "Tapas for a tenner" promotion is available 5-9pm, Sundays to Wednesdays.