When I was working in Santander in Spain, there was this lovely little beachside restaurant that was famed across the city for its fish dishes. The seafood paella there was immense with flavours and tasted so fresh I think the mussels, prawns and squid had literally just been fished from the sea. It was exactly what paella should be, simple and delicious!
Finding gluten free paella in a restaurant is a tricky task in my opinion. For some reason, although paella rice is naturally gluten free, chefs seem to love throwing in some nasty ingredients to make it impossible for ‘us’ to eat. Although I’ve made my own paella at home, let’s face it, bringing in a pile of fresh seafood is costly and takes some sourcing if you want it really fresh. Luckily for me, I discovered a fantastic Spanish restaurant in Birmingham which serves up a good choice of gluten free dishes – Bar Estilo.
Perfect for a sunny day, or those days where it’s wet and miserable outside and you want to transport yourself to Sunny Spain, Bar Estilo makes you feel like you’re on holiday. Serving a range of tapas dishes, light and large meals, and let’s not forget the all important sangria, the restaurant has got it covered for gluten free and vegetarians.
With eyes bigger than my tummy, I ordered the chicken paella and a bowl full of chunky chips as a side dish, which I have to admit filled me up for about eight hours afterwards – the only problem being I just couldn’t force myself to stop eating as it was so delish!
Granted – had it been gluten free, I would have without a doubt ordered the seafood paella, but my chicken paella, served with red peppers, butternut squash, peas and chickpeas, was really lovely and I would recommend to anyone who visits.
I admit I’m not sure you will ever get a proper, traditional paella compared to what is served in España, but this is the closest I have ever come to tasting one in England. I can definitely see myself spending a few sunny days eating tapas and sipping sangría at Bar Estilo come the summer months. Salud!
Click here to view Bar Estilo’s food menu – http://www.barestilo.co.uk/menus/birmingham/bar-estilo-birmingham-food-menu.pdf