Bodeguita Romero has been in business over 70 years, moving into its present location in 1977. It still feels very family run – old school – and swells with people during prime hours. The interior section has small tables around the walls and a large bar counter with some stools and standing space. We were lucky to get a table on one visit but then enjoyed a different perspective when we stood at the bar for our lunch. There you really felt the bustle and got to see lots of different foods coming out of the small kitchen. A nice sized patio out front provides additional tables but my preference would be to be inside, where there are lots of tile murals.
No music is in the background but there’s plenty of noise. The tables are set with fun mats and dispensers of paper napkins labeled with the Bodeguita Romero name. Above the bar are holders for multiple glasses and the walls hold many photos. The menu is large and plates are mostly small and suitable for sharing. The staff were efficient, helpful and friendly as time permitted.
Bread and breadsticks arrive at all tables and the bread is okay and the breadsticks are very crisp. It seems best used to soak up any sauces.
Marinated potatoes or Papas Aliñas were perfectly cooked potato chunks doused with olive oil and mixed with green onions and green peppers. So simple and yet divine. A standard to order there and you can see why – they were very good.
Presa Ibérico or Iberian pork presa was a pan fried piece of succulent pork that also came with potatoes but these were thinly sliced. The smell was heavenly and the taste was just as good. The potatoes were creamy inside with a nice crisp edge and the pork was seared to a lovely brown edge.
Pringa is a pork and black pudding sandwich that has been a specialty on the menu for 40 years. The soft bun was toasted to a nice crisp edge and filled with roast pork and chopped blood sausage. It was really tasty. The bun gets soaked with some of the meat drippings to make it a sandwich full of flavor and textures. Fun to eat and tasty. We ordered it both times so there are 2 different photos of it.
Boquerones are breaded fresh anchovies. They are lightly fried and good, especially with a little squirt of fresh lemon juice.
Alcachofas Salteadas con Jamón are sautéed artichokes with ham and garlic. The artichokes were cooked to very tender but not mushy and mixed with toothsome chunks of ham that positively burst with flavor when you ate them together. The ham added just the right amount of saltiness to bring out the subtle artichoke taste.
Solomillo Ibérico is an Iberian pork sirloin served with a sauce of whisky, mojo picón, roquerfort and Pedro Ximenez. It was served on top of french fries and topped with garlic. The meat was mealier than the other piece of pork but still tasty. It had been cooked perfectly to a beautiful brown edge.
Carrillera Ibérica is slow braised Iberico pork cheek. It was cooked to absolute tenderness and served with chunks of carrots and potatoes cut like fries and both were soaked in the flavorful meat sauce. It was really tasty and pretty filling.
Tortillita de Camarones or shrimp fritters were crisp with a bit of chew. The shrimp flavor was mild but they were fun to eat.
Revuelto de la Casa was house scrambled eggs with chorizo (sausage) and ham. They were moist and full of flavor. The bits of ham added a nice chew and it was all rounded out by disks of tender potato.