Abeja Tapas BarSpanish
Abeja Tapas Bar is a curiously pretty place, all twinkling lights and sugared almond pastels – especially considering its location under a concrete flyover at Hatch. Oh well, at least the underside of the Mancunian Way shelters alfresco diners from the rain.
Abeja may be Manchester’s smallest tapas bar, housed as it is in two shipping containers, but it is one of its finest.
The small dimensions are no constraint on the cleverness in the kitchen which conjures up snapshots of Granada with every bite. This blast of Andalucian sunshine is exactly what’s needed in the unremitting grey of Oxford Road.
The tapas are pretty sensational. From a mix and match selection of croquetas to the Moorish influences of pincho moruno, an Iberico pork tenderloin skewer, everything is just a great rendition of classic dishes.
Even the bread and olive oil is pure quality.
Sharing boards are excellent too. A range of meats and cheeses, each with their own distinct personality and accompaniments that play an equal part – cheeky black olives, gourmet preserves, it’s a meal that’s simply meant to be enjoyed with wine.
Everything at Abeja is drinking food. Fortunately, owner Ana Villegas’ knowledge of Andalucian wines is as encyclopaedic as her knowledge of its food. It’s not just an excellent wine list; make like a real Spaniard and enjoy a Vermouth and tonic or a tinto de verano. There’s even a whiskey from Granada, aged in sherry casks.
Abeja is Spanish for bee. This little tapas bar is the absolute Queen and she fits in perfectly in Manchester.
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