Wednesday, July 09, 2008
When my friend, Heather, was attending grad school in Riverside, Sevilla was one of her favorite haunts. When I would visit her we always dined there, upstairs in the bar, loading up on tapas and wine, while listening to some Flamenco guitar. A fellow Riverside grad was in town, and itching for some of their alioli and sangria, so we went to Sevilla, but opted for the closer locale in Long Beach. They have 3 locations, and I usually prefer to steer clear of chains, but Sevilla is fun and festive, and the food is good enough. Besides, I thought it would be the perfect warm-up to my upcoming trip to the south Spain later this month (ole ole!).
They have a fairly large menu, but we opted for our usual: a few tapas to share. Most of their wines are Spanish, and you may select a flight of any three wines offered by the glass, and they have a couple choices of Sangria, depending how much you want to spend. The table near us, ordered this 3 foot tall tower of sangria with a tap, for easy access. No waiting around for refills! We were a bit more conservative, and stuck with the wine.
Everything we ordered was cheesy and fatty. I am not complaining. We started of with the queso fundido, bread with alioli (which you will wake up with on your breath the next morning...) and olives. We couldn't eat it fast enough.
On to the chicken croquetas, which were good (because they are fried, which 9 times out of 10=good), but I would have preferred ones like I have had in Spain, which consisted of bechamel sauce with little bits of pork, making a nicer, creamy interior. These had rather large shreds of chicken, which were just chewier and different.
On to the fried calamari, with lots of tentacles, Just how I like! Tentacles=more surface area of fried batter!
We also had some shrimp with garlic sauce, but by the end we were absolutely stuffed. They have lots of cheese, and, of course, paella, but it is very easy to make a meal out of a few tapas. Was it is good as the food I have had in Spain? Of course not. But, it is decent enough. They have live music every night (we caught a nice Flamenco guitar duo), and a festive ambiance. Joe Miller's Pixto might be more authentic, but Sevilla has more comfortable vibe meant for lingering all night.
140 Pine Ave
Long Beach, CA 90802