Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Guest post: My sister writes about Fino

Here's another from sister number 2. This time she visits Fino. I promise I will make her take pictures next time, I know that's basically what you guys are interested in!

So I’ve been out of the restaurant game for a bit, but when a boy (shock!) suggested a trip to Fino on  Charlotte street I happily obliged. It did not, however, start well. Date boy was late, the heavens had opened, my umbrella was broken, the cashpoint had chewed up my card and thus I found myself lingering on a street corner waiting to be rescued - I did not have to wait long. Respite came in the form of a very fragrant tramp whose opening gambit was “I’m not mad, luv, honest. So don’t worry. I only need 80p…” needless to say
I didn’t even have 10p on me let alone 80! And with princely timing, date boy materialised and whisked me into the depths of Fino.

The effusive welcome and beaming smiles of the hostess put all thoughts of the British summer behind me. We were quickly ushered to our table and our glasses filled. A quick scan of the menu and we’d ordered! (it never takes long) though the requests for recommendations seemed to fall a little short. Everything was "fantastic, delicious, a must have". Now even I’m not that much of a piggy so we opted for a number of little tapas dishes and hoped for the best. Never being one to gush about it (I can’t quite figure out if it’s too little or too much) I’m not really sure what I was expecting from Fino.

The rolling repertoire of mini meals started with the Spanish Cold Meat Platter and olives. Salty, fatty and pink with shining rounds of oily fat, the translucent slices disappeared pretty quickly – not sure which was the Chorizo and which was the Lomo but it was good all the same. Pan con tomate was an oversalted hunk of a doorstop loaf that was swiftly replaced with the chorizo & alioli tortilla. Crispy, gooey, salty and rich. I would
have eaten the whole thing had the over enthusiastic waitress not cleared it away to make room for the meat dishes. Crisp Pork Belly, Marinated Chicken Wings in Lemon, Chillies and Garlic followed, supplemented with Stuffed courgette flowers and the Baby Gem Salad. At least the pork belly had the decency to be shatteringly crispy and butter soft underneath. The others were all passable. Several deep glugs of a smooth, robust Rioja later and my savoury cravings were satiated. Onwards to the puddings! 

Always my favourite course, the double chocolate shots delighted with warm white chocolate soup topped with an almost savoury dark head glugged in one. The donuts were a pillowy soft crispy coated delight. Hints of cinnamon and a generous shaking of sugar, I challenge anyone not to get it all over their face in the midst of devouring it. I loved every second of it….

So whilst I sat back and wondered if I still had any sugar left in my hair I found I had all but forgotten what I’d eaten, clearly not leaving as much of an impression as I had hoped. Apart from the puddings of course. So Fino, perhaps you peaked too soon, but even so, worth the visit for the wine and puddings, but savouries, I’ve had better.

Fino - 33 Charlotte Street (Entrance on Rathbone Street), London W1T 1RR

Fino on Urbanspoon

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