Casa Paco, Seville: A few years after my last trip to Seville, I was back for more. The opportunity to revisit this fascinating and historical Andalusian city arose because I’d been staying a couple of hours nearby in southern Portugal and needed to pick up a flight from Seville to reach Edinburgh directly.
The story of the “tapa” is one I know well – the term ‘tapa’ referring to a little covering placed atop a drink to keep out flies or dust. Those coverings were somethings bread, ham or a piece of cheese and so the tapa (or tapas) was born! I love Spanish food, so visiting Seville (or Sevilla) was a no-brainer.
Casa Paco, Seville: The Recommendation
Snacking or grazing from a range of foods is one of my favourite things to do. My hotel recommended Casa Paco in the centre of the city as a modern tapas joint that never failed to impress guests. It was late on a Saturday, I was hungry and the place was nearby.
There was just one table left outside, by the door. That’s my jacket. The city centre was just crammed. For a day late in November, it was still 24C (75F) and the buzz at the Christmas market right across the street was loud and bright.
Each table had a tiny trash can but I’m afraid there was still a bit of trash on the ground.
Casa Paco, Seville: The Menu
I was presented with an English menu (for which I was glad). With my rudimentary Spanish, I noticed a few variations in the main menu written on the wall.
When the servers brought a little hot roll, they also brought some specials of the day (see below) which had some very interesting options
Everywhere I went in Seville had a variation on these little hard breadsticks, like a firmer Italian grissini.
I must confess that I prefer a little butter or oil and vinegar when hot bread is served. The default here was plain.
I chose a glass of Pazo de Monterrey, one of the house whites and it was light and dry. Perfect for a warm winter afternoon.
Casa Paco: The Food
My first choice was from the day’s specials: a salmon tartare.
This was more like a ceviche cut than tartare, but it had been well-seasoned and the salmon was rich. It sat on a bed of firm potato pieces dressed with aioli, was topped with more aioli and sprouted seeds. This was served with more firm crackers which had the faintest hint of sesame. A top dish at €5.50.
Up next was another special billed as a curry dish, but not quite like any I’ve had. I knew from Google that the underlying biscuit was called an Inés Rosales, which is often sweet. I expected the unsweetened version here, but this was fully sugared.
The biscuit (akin to a large water biscuit) was topped with curried chicken and then with sweet chilli sauce. This was all much too sweet and the dish had no balance. This dish cost €4.50.
The croquettes (or croquetas) were prepared with roast pork. A much better option. These were deliciously rich and creamy with just the right amount of crunch. Croquetas can be a little oily but these had a dry texture which ate beautifully.
At €4.40, I thought these were good value. Alongside the salmon tartare, this would have been a perfect lunch.
Casa Paco: The Bill
With a cover charge of €1, three courses and two glasses of wine, the total bill came to €22.40 excluding tip. Quite a bargain for a well-regarded modern tapas restaurant!
With 8 nights in Seville, I might well be tempted to return. I’d like to try any other variations on those croquetas!