This January, Brindisa will open Brindisa Kitchen at The Borough Market Kitchen. All dishes and drinks at their newest Borough Market home will guide visitors on a culinary journey in the footsteps of an ancient Spanish pilgrimage, ‘La Ruta de la Plata’. This Roman route was a highway for goods, troops, traders and travellers, and winds through Spain from white sandy shores of Andalucía in the south to the wild Northern Asturian coastline.
Set in the heart of The Borough Market Kitchen, Borough Market’s new communal dining space, the restaurant will be walk-in only, seating guests around a marble-topped, horseshoe-shaped bar. Backed by dusky blue tiles, there’s a seafood counter where diners can take their pick of the day’s freshly landed catches, or simply watch the kitchen at work.
Rockfish from the north, trout from the rivers, salt cod from inland areas and crispy fish and tuna from the south form the backbone of the menu. Wild game, lamb and pulses from the woodland and mountains along the route create a food journey through ‘España profunda’. There’s bar snacks and salazones (salted cured fish), followed by a traditional choice of raciones or half raciones of heritage dishes such as river trout with ham, white beans with crab, plump escabeche mussels with romesco sauce and fried whitebait with broken eggs. A short, simple section of ‘side routes’ completes the menu.
To finish, or even to start, diners can choose award-winning cheeses from farms dotted along La Ruta de la Plata, such as Barros Torta, a tangy cardoon sheep’s cheese from Extremadura, and Payoyo, made with milk from the goat indigenous to the Sierra de Cadiz. For dessert, there’s cherries in orujo, a grape liqueur, or daily-changing ‘buñuelos dulces’, sweet fritters.
The drinks menu also follows the latitude of the trade route, from single estate sherries straight from the bodegas, through to Asturian cider and wines from Alvar de Dios’ vineyards around León, Zamora and Salamanca. Brindisa Kitchen will showcase indigenous grape varieties and wines from artisan winemakers in these lesser-known regions that will complement the food inspired by the corresponding areas of Spain.
For the traveller just beginning their day’s journey, Brindisa Kitchen will be open for a hearty breakfast of migas, churros and thick hot chocolate, as well as stove coffee and more. Throughout the day, guests on the move can grab a coffee and sweet snack to take with them as they explore the market.
Founder and co-owner Monika Linton says, “Brindisa Kitchen allows us get closer to the fascinating variety of the mini lands – or ‘comarcas’ – that line La Ruta de la Plata. I’m looking forward to delving deep into the local cultures: their recipes, crops and ingredients, their one pot dishes, family dishes and seasonal food habits.”