Barrafina (Adelaide St): where the sister (restaurant) struts off her stuff

I have mad love for Barrafina on Frith Street but the long queues can be quite off-putting. Admittedly, the food is worth the wait but sometimes a growling stomach can unleash a hangry potty mind. So when they set up a second restaurant on Adelaide Street (which is a stone’s throw away from work), I knew I had to test it with G & Plaid Boy.

So what’s the difference? Adelaide Street has a lower ground space that can be used for group bookings and private events. The menu is – dare I say – more exciting than Frith Street too. It showcases some choice plates of suckling pig, rabbit shoulder, calamari sandwiches, lamb’s kidney’s, etc. Prices are very tapas-bar cheap and the most expensive thing on the menu is every carnivore’s dream: chuleton (t-bone steak) at £65 per kilo.

The restaurant was already packed at 6.30pm but we only waited for around 10 minutes to be seated. Success! We had a pretty good view as well!

We started off with chipirones (£7) and it was just as good as I remember. I could not stop myself from munching!

From the specials board, we ordered the cod cheeks (£6.50). Slightly disappointed with this one as I thought it was quite bland. Even the harissa sauce didn’t lift the flavours of this dish.

We then had the arroz de Marisco (£9.8) which was the dish that did it for me. The seafood tasted fresh and there was enough of it to share without us fighting over a lone prawn or an octopus tentacle. The rice was cooked perfectly and the sauce, though quite heavily seasoned, was decadently rich and smoky. I am licking my lips as I type.

G & Plaid Boy shared a tortilla. They got the one with prawns, garlic stalks and ‘shrooms (£7). I did not partake on this little journey. Because… egg.

I did, however, eat more than my fair share of the quail escabeche (£8.8). Whilst my companions preferred the grilled quail at Frith Street, I liked this little birdy more, particularly because of the mind game we played. I didn’t think I’d like it because 1) I don’t like mixing fruit with protein; 2) it did not look like the escabeche I had in mind. So when the apricots and sultanas delivered the familiar sweet and sour taste of the escabeche I’m used to… magic.

My dining buddies were on the brim of food coma, but I felt we had to have a bit of red meat so I ordered the Iberico pork ribs (£8.8). I imagined it grilled, glazed and dry but it came bathed in sweet sauce (perhaps a bit of Pedro Ximenez?) and dusted with chives. It’s a winner dish, with the meat fall-off-the-bone tender and the a balanced sauce that elevates the pork flavour.


Overall, I enjoyed dinner. Service was impeccable and food was outstanding. Oh, and the toilets were much cleaner and larger. Granted, it’s still new, but there’s a good way of maximising space. This sister restaurant is definitely a great testament to the Barrafina brand.

Barrafina Adelaide Street
10 Adelaide Street, Covent Garden, London WC2N | For Private Dining & Events Enquiries: +44(0)20 7440 1456
Ave spend pp: £35
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1 Comment

  1. 6th January 2015 / 6:40 am

    We flew home to book this venue in June last year. Absolutely loved it here and I'll be certainly waiting to go back there for more New York events.