Tapas started in bars in Spain, where to prevent flies messing with their coffee, the patrons of bars started putting the saucers over the top of their cups. Ah ha! operators thought, why not serve small plates of nibbles that could sit on those plates... and so tapas were born. Traditional tapas were and in places remain, prepared dishes that sit in refrigerated counters on the bar that simply need re heating to order. The concept of Tapas has come a long way over the years with small plates ever more popular. Michelin chefs thrive offering Tasting Menus which are essentially smaller plates, or put another way a structured tapas menu to explore more of their dishes.
To us, tapas is a fantastic way to eat, a way to explore more dishes than a traditional English menu allows. After all why would most people dare to explore when they have to choose 1 plate of food costing between £15 and £30? So people tend to stick to what they know or opt for a couple of starters or nibbles. As a family we have been bucking that traditional approach for years and having your own bespoke buffet delivered plate by plate to your table is just a wonderful way to enjoy time with friends and family. People try things they wouldn't normally try and new favourites are found.
Take a holiday from the traditional - escape the madness and jump in.
Based on the simple premise of taking the best ingredients and matching complimentary flavours together we use local suppliers wherever possible to create dishes we love. and hope you will too.
Boiled to mush for years this humble vegetable not only has great health benefits but is a revelation @ The Bridge Inn. New guests not only arrive having been recommended to visit us but with the instruction "you have to order the Humble Cauliflower". If you only order one dish make it the Humble Cauliflower and just watch for imitations as they have already started to.
Firstly a confession, our cured meats are not local. They are imported direct from Spain so that we can be assured that our Iberico, Serano, Salami & Cured Beef are the very best. Iberico is simply the best cured ham in the world. Produced from acorn fed free range black pigs they are matured (hung) for at least three years. As Rick Stein says "when eaten with Manzanilla sherry it is a flavour combination that just seems to endlessly complement each other". If you like Parma Ham then stop messing around & try the ultimate - Iberico!
Our menu has 65 dishes broken down into Pinchos, Vegetables, Meat, Fish, Vegetables & Desserts with prices ranging per plate from £1.75 to £20. This style can be daunting to tapas newbies and even to tapas veterans who have never visited us. Firstly - our team are always happy to advise and to help ensure you do not over order.
We say think sharing - particularly the vegetables which tend to be larger - the Humble Cauliflower (highly recommended) is a head of Cauliflower and the big selling Patatas Bravas is ample for at least two. Although we cannot know how big your appetite is we generally advise each person picks 3 dishes each. Or to get started why not order Bread & Aioli, some Olives, a meat & a fish plate plus a couple of vegetable dishes and as many pinchos (like Canapés) as you fancy.
As an example 2 ladies aged 85 & 86 dined the other day and ordered Pork Belly, Lamb & Mint, Humble Cauliflower & Baby Jackets with Sour Cream & Chive finished off with a Lemon Tart to share. They loved it despite having never tried Tapas before and wondered why everyone didn't eat that way. Tapas are not only perfect for sharing and for exploring new flavours but for people on diets, those seeking a lighter meal and are spot on for vegetarians and vegans.