Tapaste is a vibrant hub with brilliant Spanish delights

Tapaste on Hindustan Road brings to Kolkata a much needed break from usual café food with its authentic Spanish recipes

Raima Ganguly Published :  25th November 2022 12:00 AM   |   Published :   |  25th November 2022 12:00 AM


Alleys of Kolkata might look oversaturated with cafes these days, however not all of them need to have a similar repetitive menu and décor that trips you down into a déjà vu. Tapaste is one such vibrant hub with brilliant Spanish delights stirring up in its kitchen. Located in the heart of Hindustan Road, Tapaste adds to the huge list of cafes thronging the area, while simultaneously making it a point to stand out with its epicurean adventures.

Helmed by 81 year old Antonio Costa Bolufer, in partnership with Kunal Ganguly, the café is filled to the brim with memoirs from the coastlines of Spain, along with a menu that is typed out in Spanish, with English translations below each. A Spaniard working in Kolkata for the past two decades, Antonio shares a deep connection with the city of Joy and was looking to merge his roots with his love for quite some time now, and Tapaste is the fruit of his wishes.

Decked in vibrant hues of yellow, red and green, the interiors will instantly make up for a dull day. Divided into two sections, the first of the two is typically a little more formal with high wooden chairs, hand painted with floral motifs, furnished with patchwork cushions gracing the segment. Mirrors framing the walls create an illusion of a larger space. The innermost segment however, has two low seating arrangements replete with patchwork furnishing and distressed trunks doubling up as tables. A look at the ceiling will reveal mock plants replicating the vineyards in the Spanish countryside.

For a quick refreshment, choose from a wide variety of herbal teas just as we settled for the Moroccan Mint Tea and Hibiscus Tea. Served in transparent teapots, each of the colorful brews strike a balance with the lively interiors. The bill of fare also boasts of a huge variety of mocktails, iced tea and caffeinated beverages.

To kick off the exotic gustatory adventure, Sopa De Marisco turned out to be a wonderful conversation starter. One portion of the mixed seafood soup can easily be shared amongst three, and each order arrives with one aromatic slice of garlic bread. Gazpacho is the vegetarian substitute for people who like to keep things healthy and green.

Each of the dishes that followed next seemed to have been freshly served out of an authentic Spanish kitchen, and gave off a true culinary experience reminiscent of the European country. The ingredients too, keep up with traditions as much as possible, halfway across the globe.

The Salpicon de Marisco brings in a splash of offerings from the sea on your plate replete with the perfect amount of verdant crunch, while the Empanadas, covered in the thinnest layers of bread fried in minimal oil, cup delectable meaty fillings carefully. If we had to rate each of them on the taste meter, both score near about a perfect ten. For a more scrumptious main course, a tasteful mound of the traditional Paella topped with calamari and octopus meat. What makes their Paella all the more interesting, is the use of Cuttlefish or squid ink that gives it a dark tinge and umami-rich flavour.

Torta de Manzana aka apple pie, and melt-in-mouth Churros served with fresh cream make the entire gastronomic journey come to a full round.

Price for two: Rs. 1000

Pictures by Anindya Saha