Friday, 2 February 2024, 09:30
I have never been a great fan of using the term 'gastrobar' to describe a bar-restaurant where a less traditional cuisine is offered and prepared. I have always preferred the term 'bar' pure and simple. What these establishments offer to their clientele depends on their owners and how they understand cuisine. After all, cuisine is everything, from what a humble bar in a half-empty village offers to what is prepared in a 5-star restaurant.
Bassoa is a small restaurant located in the area of La Malagueta that has been run by María González and Juanjo Gómez for a little over a year now, with assistance in the dining room from their son. This friendly couple met in this same neighbourhood and one day decided that they should continue working in the hotel and catering business, but on their own. Without thinking too much about it, they opened this bar-restaurant, focusing their menu on the clientele that lives in the area. As María defines it: «Bassoa is a charming neighbourhood restaurant with economical prices».
Address: Fernando Camino, 15, Malaga
Telephone: 744 653 229
Closed: Sunday night, Monday and Tuesday.
Price: Ensaladilla (Russian salad): 10 €. Tortilla Betanzos (omelette): 6 €. Pierna de cordero (leg of lamb): 28 €.
Rating: Cooking: 7. Dining area: 6.5. Wine list: 6,5. Overall score: 7 / 10
Here we find a menu that mixes dishes from Spain's most traditional cuisine, such as rice and stews in season, with other more modern dishes, such as Malaga cured sausage tartar, artichokes with ham and foie gras or smoked sardine toast with young green leaves and other dishes that are now so fashionable and that are reminiscent of Asian cuisine, such as pan bao with glass prawns (sweet, soft-shelled prawns) or tuna tataki (seared tuna). Leaving aside these dishes that you can find on the menus of many establishments in Malaga, you should definitely come to this restaurant for a delicious Betanzos-style potato omelette (lightly cooked with runny centre), fried eggs with shavings of ham and prawns or a traditional Asturian cachopo (breadcrumbed beef fillet stuffed with cured ham and cheese).
The wine list is in line with what is expected of a restaurant of this kind, although it is too traditional, but in its favour is the fact that you can enjoy any of a full range of Malaga wines, as well as an interesting beer selection, especially those of Victoria. All in all, the good work of María in the kitchen and the good prices have a great influence in Bassoa's rating.
Bluefin tuna salad
A classic Russian salad where the potato is finely chopped and not mashed. At a good temperature so that the red tuna, previously marinated, fuses its flavour with that of the potato. The mayonnaise is very mild.
Tortilla de Betanzos
More than just a Betanzos style omelette but created with the Galician Kennebec potato, not easy to find in Malaga. Very well made, just the right size, juicy, rather mellow and with just the right amount of salt. Perfect!
The base on which this tartar is served is a very thin glass bread. The sausage is perhaps a little too sweet as it is too finely chopped and it also lacks a balance of flavours to prevent the acidic from overpowering the rest.
Torrija with pistachio cream
Torrija is one of the desserts that are beginning to proliferate on the menus of Malaga restaurants. Maria's torrija stands out for its flavour and also because the cream of pistachios on the bread enhances it even more.
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