Riverbend Tapas Crawl Returns


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When Xavier Laurentino, owner of the Spanish restaurant Barcelona Tapas, explained the concept for last month’s inaugural Riverbend International Tapas Crawl, he told me he hoped it would eventually grow into a regular event.

That seemed like a good idea to me, though it’s come together faster than I thought.

This Wednesday, Aug. 25, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., a group of restaurants clustered in the Riverbend will host the second edition of the Tapas Crawl, and participating chef Frank Brigtsen says it will now be an ongoing dining event for the neighborhood held on the last Wednesday of each month.

The idea remains the same as last month’s kick-off: the public is invited to stroll a circuit of five restaurants, each of which will serve a small plate and a short glass of wine for the set price of $5. Read the back story here.

The roster of restaurants will change a bit each time, and this week those participating include:

  • Barcelona Tapas (720 Dublin St., 861-9696);

  • Brigtsen’s Restaurant (723 Dante St., 861-7610);

  • Dante's Kitchen (736 Dante St., 861-3121);

  • Hana Japanese Restaurant (8116 Hampson St., 865-1634) and;

  • Jazmine Café (614 S. Carrollton Ave., 866-9301) which serves Vietnamese food.

It quickly became clear during the first outing for the Tapas Crawl that the restaurants were generally unprepared to quickly serve the crowd that turned up to try it out. Brigtsen’s Restaurant did the best job of the lot, serving a choice of duck pate or piquillo peppers stuffed with goat cheese and cups of wine (pictured), all of which were ready to pluck from a platter in the restaurant’s corridor. Chef Brigtsen says the participating restaurants learned from the experience and should have a better handle on service logistics this time around.

I hope so. This could really evolve into a great event for the Riverbend, especially as the weather cools off this fall and the prospect of strolling from place to place in that pretty neighborhood becomes even more appealing.

Remember to bring cash for the tapas crawl.

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