You can head downstairs for more upscale dining, or you can stay upstairs in the bar area, as we did this time around with its more informal offering, low tables and corners with high tables for two. The Iberian ham croquettes are perfectly crunchy on the outside and perfectly creamy on the inside, they're unbeatable and not to be missed. The crispy and tender Segovian suckling pig's ears are accompanied by fresh notes of green 'mojo' to balance the touch of spiciness. We didn't try the 'callos' (tripe) this time around so we'd have an excuse to come back as soon as possible. We did expect more intensity in the confit leeks with bacon, a more palpable taste. They're tender indeed, and well-executed too, but they just didn't make us slam our palms down on the table. Maybe that wasn't the point. We did find that same lightness, but packing more of a punch, in the pickled mackerel. It's a dish that will make you kiss your fingers. The 'escabeche' (pickling brine) is superb, the more acidic brushstrokes give way to notes of aromatic herbs.
Add to this a top selection of Iberian sausages (from ham to 'sobrasada') and national cheeses (from Cádiz to Catalonia), add another appetizing and measured half dozen portions (in some cases, also half portions), attractive options of wines by the glass (and they're generous pours to boot), some off-the-menu dishes, a young, attentive and pleasant staff, put it all together and you have much more than a tapas bar. It can be that if you want – you'll be in heaven with some wine and croquettes – but it's also a tavern as contemporary as it is home-grown, delicious and friendly.