Just One Dish To Order At Julian Serrano (And One To Avoid)
Longtime readers should be aware there are two things this writer believes make everything better: bacon and eggs. And, peanut butter. Let us rephrase that: There are three things that can elevate a dish for us. The menu at Aria's Julian Serrano is full of tapas, but it's one in particular that liberally uses eggs and is Just One Dish that we always order twice.
The Huevos Estrellados: fried potatoes, eggs and imported spanish pork chorizo for $10. Yes, that's fancy words for french fries and sausage bits covered in eggs. Real chorizo bits to be bitten, not slurped like our last chorizo dish. Is it breakfast or is it dinner? Is it finger food or fork food? It's a crispy, spicy, runny all-of-the-above dish that needs to be ordered in multiples of two. Not at once mind you, not unless your party is four or more. Order it as an appetizer and then later as a side dish. Point at the menu if you're nervous about pronouncing it. But, it is everyone's patriotic duty to order these french fried pataters.
Since one cannot live on potatoes and eggs alone, it's our patriotic duty to inform you when going to Julian Serrano for Just One Dish, make sure it's just not that one dish. The crispy fried artichokes sounded like a good idea (they're fried!), but does that plate look appealing to anyone even if we labeled it 'chicken wings'?
The artichokes were crispy alright, but had the texture and flavor of chewing hay in a dusty barn. Smothering them in the mayonnaise-based sauce helped them go down a little easier, but we were preparing our best miming of the Heimlich with each bite we choked down. Just in case.
Remember kids, no matter what mom taught us all growing up -- eggs good, artichokes bad. At least in this curious case of contrasting tapas at Julian Serrano.