Not the most Spanish of meals, but the potatoes were good though!
Ok, we can safely say that Sydney-siders all know about Darling Square now, as almost every eatery in the precinct is packed out, with lines out the door! So your best chance to get fed on a Thurs-Sat evening or Sat-Sun lunch-time is back in the Exchange – at one of the dozen take-away style stores.
Boque Tapavino will be the 7th store we’ve tried from the Makers’ Dozen thus far – serving up Spanish tapas style small dishes to share, grilled meats in main sizes, fresh seafood also in main sizes, and burgers and hot dogs for take-away or dine-in. Standing at the counter we unknowingly ordered from the take-away menu, although we were in mind to dine-in, so we ordered a Chicken burger ($12.00), and a Chorizo burger combo ($17.00).
If you elect to dine-in, they have their own roped-off seating area, providing full table service with what seemed to be unlimited top-ups of your tap water. After a short wait our food was served to us on proper plates with proper knives and forks.
We were wondering if their burgers would be a Bocadillo (Spanish baguette) or a burger burger, and it was a burger burger. Aside from a vinegary dressing on the tomato and lettuce, and perhaps a more smokey flavoured grilled chicken (it was a bit thin though), it was pretty much a standard chicken burger – not much to write home about unfortunately.
While my wife’s chorizo burger was more like it! The meat patty was pink – not because it was under-cooked, but it was a chorizo sausage which had been minced and then re-shaped and re-cooked as a chorizo meat patty. Paired with shredded purple cabbage, her burger managed to hit closer to the mark. And the stand-out for both of us were the baked potatoes! The potatoes were baked until they had a crunchy edge on all sides, salted with large-grained rock salt, and smeared with a mayo-like sauce – they were definitely moreish! And if you elected to upsize all your burgers into a combo, you would have all 9 pieces of tasty potato all to yourself!
Our end verdict, 3.5 Stars from 5! (2 from 3 for Food (66.6% of our food hit the mark, so 2 from 3 was a fair score); 0.5 from 0.5 for Service (the staff were super attentive, each time my water dipped below the final third, he was back, topping up my water glass); 0.5 from 0.5 for Atmosphere (the Exchange will always get full marks from me for Atmosphere, and all the diners around us were having a great time!); and 1 from 1 for Value for Money ($12.00 for a burger without sides is pretty reasonable, and to make it a combo – 9 large chunks of potato was very generous!)).
In conclusion, I’m glad actually that Boque Tapavino’s bread and meat offering were not Bocadillos, as it means that we still have reasons to go back to Encassa Rapido for their awesome baguettes! Boque Tapavino has a very vast selection of share plates and mains which we didn’t touch on, so we’d be interested to come back and try a proper sit down meal at Boque Tapavino when we’ve eventually eaten at all dozen stores and starting to repeat meals at our favourites.
Boque Tapavino- Saturday 9 November (3.5 Stars)
PH: (02) 8072 8826
Makers Dozen Food Hall, the Exchange Building, 1 Little Pier Street, Haymarket
Mon-Sun 11.30am – 10pm