Basque Country Cookery
Chef Luis Bollo’s first foray out of his native San Sebastian and into the New York restaurant world was with molecular-focused Meigas in 1999, but over 10 years later, he has finally returned home – through his cooking, that is. Salinas, Bollo’s tapas restaurant which opened last year in the heart of Chelsea, is stripped of Meigas’ foams, gels, and culinary magic tricks, harkening instead back to traditional Spanish flavours – an ode to the tastes of home, if home were the azure shores of Northern Spain’s Basque Country.
Salinas features dishes you would commonly find on the Mediterranean coast and Balearic Islands. To start, Crujiente Mahonés (Spanish flatbread with Mahon cheese, honey, thyme and sea salt) and Brandada Y Hongos (Catalan codfish with wild mushroom compote and olive oil toast) whet the appetite, while the hearty Rossejat Rapida (Fideo pasta with chicken, fava beans, chorizo and cockles) and the must-order Porcella (slow-roasted suckling pig) are satisfyingly rich mains. To best enjoy your flavour-packed plates of Spain, request to sit to sit in the back room (as the restaurant is divided into three sections), where a retractable roof transforms open-air garden dining in summer into a cozy, fireside meal come winter. Charming!