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Restaurant Review

October 25, 2012

By:  Coach Maria – Salus Nutritionist & Food Expert

Growing up in Spain, we were surrounded with a rich culture and tradition.  Meals and socializing were intricately tied together.

My grandfather, Bautista Gonzalez, opened up La Viña in Bilbao, Spain, in 1927.  Originally serving sweet wine and Palma ham, the tradition continues 85 years later and remains in the hands of my cousin, José Ramón González.

Although it’s been years since I’ve step foot back in Spain, I continue to have a fierce loyal affection to my family and the delicious Spanish cuisine.

I have visited several restaurants that attempt to recreate this cuisine with little or disappointing luck.

Until, that is, I stumbled upon Finca!

Finca is the creation of Pago owner, Scott Evans.  Having enjoyed Pago several times, I was eager, albeit cautious, to want to try this restaurant claiming to have authentic Spanish cuisine.

Finca boasts a wide array of Tapas (bite-sized appetizers) – divided into both Tapas frias (cold) and Tapas calientes (hot), and larger, entree sized plates called Raciones, if your appetite requires a bit more.

Also offered is a brunch menu that include items such as the traditional Tortilla de Seta (mushroom, goat cheese, potato omelet with caramelized onions) and Huevos Flamenco (chorizo, potato, baked eggs, onions, peppers).

Finca continues Pago’s tradition to fully support local producers such as Clifford Farms, Morgan Valley Lamb, Ballard Farms and Snowy Mountain Creamery.

What are my personal thoughts and impressions?

The interior design of Finca is nothing like the quaint, cozy feel of what I might have hoped for or expected.  Some people like this type of design and others could care less, but for me;  atmosphere can negatively or positively influence my dining experience and this influence just felt cold.

I did, however, enjoy the simplicity of the menu and ease of ordering.

Were the flavors authentic?

Yes – some of the flavors took me back instantly and I was impressed with the obvious care and precision they take with food presentation.  The Tapas experience allows for great food sharing with whomever you are dining with and is conducive to great conversations!  The croquetas – a deliciously common dish growing up – were difficult to have to share with others, since they were exactly what I remember eating as a child.

No – some of the items were bland and lacked the mouth-bursting flavors that are so common with these dishes.  To be fair, however, I’m certain that on a different day, those same dishes would probably be quite delicious – everyone that cooks, knows that the same recipe can be great one time it’s made and dull the next time it’s made!

Would I go back?



A resounding YES!

As a matter of fact, I plan on taking my sister – who will be visiting soon – to share these delicious tapas and reminisce about our great childhood experiences in Spain.

photos courtesy of randomactsofkellines

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