La Vara makes you feel things you’ve never felt before. Your senses are automatically heightened by the food and flavors, so it might be good to take a date here as they might fall in love with you, too (wink). You can tell the chef has pushed his limits to create some of the best dishes you’ve ever had in your life yet it all feels so familiar at the same time. You find yourself acting like Piggy in William Golding’s book Lord of the Flies because you will do anything you can to grab that last bite of lamb off the shared center plate. I’m telling you La Vara is life changing and you’ve never appreciated food on the table more than you have here. Located in the quaint Cobble Hill area, people here are nice and getting what they deserve. Dive into the Fried Artichokes with anchovy aioli. The crunch combined with the tender leaves satisfies and tickles your palate to begin for the night. The Berenjena Con Miel aka eggplant with honey, melted cheese, nigella seed which by the way is only $8 took me to a place I’ve never been. This almost tasted like a savory dessert. Who doesn’t love melted cheese and honey anyways. I’d be pretty excited for this to appear everyday for an afternoon snack for me. Gone in seconds…
The vegetable salad of the day composed of roasted red peppers, eggplant, squash and some amazing vegetable puree or dressing that rounded it out. You feel healthy eating all these veggies here even though who knows what is really in the magic flavors and sauces. Now for the entrees. The Cumin Roasted Lamb Breast might be the most tender lamb my lips have ever met. This is one entree I refuse to order on my own because I have had more tough pieces than tender pieces. I could have easily thought this was brisket if my eyes were closed. Who are these people at La Vara and can they cook for me in my home everyday? The Fish of the Day was Dorade and painted with harissa. I embarrassingly ate both filets in under five minutes as if it was a race. I’m telling you this place makes you feel things and I was afraid of losing more than one bite to the rest of the scavengers at the table. Kidding, but only a little bit. Everything is so fresh, unique, playful yet every type of diner can understand and appreciate this cuisine and dishes.
The Fideua is one of the most unique dishes on the menu. It’s Valencian style noodle paella, shrimp, squid, clams, aioli. It’s basically a Spanish style pad thai that tastes better than any pad thai you’ve ever had. The seafood is an added bonus. I think this love letter to La Vara is pretty explanatory. My last words are that you must try this restaurant as soon as possible because you will be dreaming about it for days and this place can truly make you happy.