My husband and I went to Patanegra in NW Portland. It was our 2nd time, but equally good as last time! (see 8.12.12 blog post) We knew we wanted to try the paella this time so we reined ourselves in on tapas. 🙂 The Mencia red wine paired nicely with everything.
We started out with Pan con tomate which we had last time and it was equally as good. What a delicious combination of bread, serrano ham, and tomato spread! We then indulged in regular ole bread with olive oil while waiting for our paella. Did I say regular ole olive oil? Well, not really. The olive oil was absolutely delicious with a bold flavor. It reminded us of the “grassy” taste of the Arbequina olive oil from Oregon Olive Mill/Durant Vineyard/Red Ridge Farms which comes from olive trees from Spain. This website is quite informative about the olive trees and oils from the various regions of Spain.
The paella was even more spectacular than we were imagining. Neither of us are heavy seafood eaters and not big fans of the traditional seafood paella-even though we’ve had some delicious ones in Spain. So, we opted for an interesting sounding option called Paella Carnicera. It included chorizo and serrano ham along with a sausage called morcilla. It’s quite a dark sausage with amazing flavor. It reminds me of a Spanish version of the most flavorful Italian sausage.
Finally, for dessert we had the Crema Catalana. It had amazing flavor! It was a type of creme brulee, however, it was a bit lighter and smoother and had notes of vanilla and orange. We will definitely be back again for more!
Patanegra (Spanish restaurant)
What a delightful, hidden restaurant off the beaten path of NW 23rd! It was a bit tricky to find since it’s not actually on NW 23rd Avenue, but rather NW 23rd Place. Pata Negra apparently stands for Iberico ham. Check out this slide show of the Pata Negra (black pigs) as well as the restaurant and food served there. We were seated at the nice, cozy table pictured in the slide show by the window. Check out their dinner menu. This link to the wine list provides a map of Spain and the various regions. I only drank by the glass which is listed by clicking on the tab “by the glass” on the far right.
Open kitchen at the back
Well stocked bar to the side
We passed on the paella this visit and indulged in tapas to try a variety of their dishes. I started out with gazpacho and a glass of mencia (red wine from the Bierzo region). The gazpacho was absolutely refreshing given the warm day with a nice bite at the end.
My husband started out with the classic tortilla espanola. It was delicious and perfectly prepared.
I then had the rollitos de berenjena (grilled eggplant). (pictured on the back right) I recall an amazing deep fried Aubergine when in Spain 2 years ago, but this was not quite the same. I wasn’t a fan of the fuzz that was like eating a peach.
The grilled asparagus was simple, but delicious!
My husband ordered the filete de ternera (grilled beefsteak and fingerlings). The steak melted in your mouth and the fingerlings had great flavor.
I then finished up with the pan con tomate, jamon y queso (bread with Serrano ham (from Spain) with manchego cheese). (pictured on the front left) This was delicious with a glass of monastrell (red from the Alicante and Jumilla regions).
The service was impeccable and we’ll definitely return again!