La Sepia Portugese Fish Dinner, 31 January 2009

It occurred to me that we have not tried fresh Portugese food before, so I thought it would be a good style of cuisine to sample for our first dinner of 2009. It's slightly different from Spanish food, with more of an accent on seafood, and it's also not too expensive, which seems to be getting to be an important point during these troubled times.

Anyway, the date is Saturday 31 January and the restaurant is called La Sepia, Marburger Strasse 2, 10789 Berlin. The kitchen is run by Josť de Cintra Moreira since 1996 so it has survived well so far, which is always a good sign. It is quite close to the Ku'damm and Zoo, so getting there will not be a problem. If you want to check out the place, their website is on http://www.lasepia-berlin.de. Do have a look soon, check your diary and we hope that you can make it. It is not an expensive restaurant (perhaps 30-35 Euro for dinner and drinks) and one interesting feature is the wide selection of fresh fish which one can choose beforehand from the iced display. Yum.

We have not made a big booking as the weather is so cold and it's hard to predict numbers so do let me know as soon as possible if you would like to come along. Bookings close on Friday 23 January and all those members who make it onto the list will get a confirmation email by Monday 26 January with details of where we will meet for drinks and a chat before dinner, as usual.

To be honest, I was in a dilemma as to whether to splash out and start 2009 in style at an swanky gourmet restaurant (they need our business now even more than ever!) or do a simple budget event, and this place is the best compromise I can think of as it is a good interesting restaurant which fits in somewhere in the middle.

See you all soon!

Chris

How it went on the night...

It was a bit complicated initially as 6 people decided to cancel pretty much at the last minute or just didn't show up, which is somewhat disappointing, especially if they like fish. The seafood here is pretty good, with a huge Spanish influence but they still managed to convey a Portugese flavour to their dishes (mainly by the judicious use of some extra paprika and various dried herbs). The krake (octopus) was pretty good, to the point where we stole a krake galicia accidentally from someone else and had to hurriedly re-order it again. The rest of the fish was well-cooked and tasty and one cannot complain at all. It is not quite and will never be the standard of Fischer Fritz, but for the price, it was really very tolerable. What was also a pleasant surprise was the table wine, which was not overpowering or contentious and quite drinkable and very good value at 13 Euro a litre! I had 2 litres before I noticed anything wrong but by then it was, as usual, too late. Oh well. The atmosphere is also quite authentic, done up like a fishing village's taverna, so overall, it is a reasonably-priced place to take your friends for fresh fish.

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