If you’re craving rustic, classic Spanish food that is utterly gratifying in its simplicity, then head to My Little Spanish Place and get ready to dig in mama! This unassuming Bukit Timah gem is inspired by the meson a traditional home-styled restaurant, whose philosophy is “Mi Casa es Su Casa”.
Spanish native, Chef Maria Sevillano and her Co-Chef and partner Edward Esmero helm the newly renovated 50-seat restaurant. Their philosophy is simple – to provide a relaxed space where you can bring great company to share in simple, soul warming food.
All of the dishes here are designed with sharing in mind — from the fabulous paellas (there’s 5 to choose from, including black squid ink paella) to the Cochinillo Asado, a slow roasted, marinated suckling pig. Then, of course, there’s also the Jamon Bar! Styled like a gourmet charcuterie in Spain, the bar showcases 5 legs of Jamon ham imported from Spain, which are carved à la minute with each order.
My husband and I had the pleasure of brunching at My Little Spanish Place a few weeks back. Chef Esmero, whose great grandfather is Spanish and father is Mexican, has his roots deeply entrenched in Latino influences. He believes Spanish food comes from the heart and is best when cooked in a “homely” manner. That sentiment resonates when you spend time at this charming restaurant.
We started with Hueso con Tuetano Asado, roasted bone marrow with crispy Jamon Serrano, capers and ajo verde served with coca bread. As I’m not usually a fan of bone marrow I approached the dish with some trepidation only to be very pleasantly surprised by the light, fresh flavours and textures. “Veal, not beef, you see” Chef Esmero advised with a knowing wink and a smile.
Next up was Bocadillos de Queso Asado con Jamon, a good old ham and cheese toastie — with pizazz! Decadently stuffed with freshly sliced Jamon and manchengo cheese this heavenly sambo will make the most seasoned gourmand swoon. The buttery, slightly salty Jamon perfectly complimented the creamy manchengo and was wedged between thick slices of bread that were toasted to golden perfection.
Tortilla de Patata, the national dish of Spain, is a staple on the regular brunch menu — however we were lucky enough to feast on a “Jamon Especial” version on the day we visited. This incredibly light Spanish potato omelette with Jamon Iberico and sweet red peppers, was served with a saffron aioli – a twist on the traditional.
Chef Esmero was quick to point out however that this was in no way a fusion dish, emphasising a great dislike for the word. He views his culinary style as largely influenced by his familial roots with the addition of his own flair. The dishes are his “interpretation’ of traditional Spanish fare – just don’t call it fusion!
From the omelette we moved onto dessert. When dining at a Spanish restaurant it’s natural to order the churros for dessert, however for me this was the only dish that under-whelmed. I found the churros far too doughy in the centre, which isn’t to my liking. The award winning Chocolate de Tarta on the other hand was perfection. Chef Esmero’s specialty, this luscious triple layer chocolate tart with a light, crumbly, shell that encases a chocolate ganache-like filling and topped with a dark chocolate sauce lived up to its reputation.
And just when we thought we couldn’t eat any more… and much to my, and especially my husband’s delight, Chef Esmero invited us to sample the Jamon Bar. What an experience! We sampled all 5 legs of Jamon, starting from youngest to oldest, while Chef explained to us the distinct characteristics of their region of origin. From melt in your mouth to buttery, or slightly salty… it was an array of heavenly flavours!
My Little Spanish Place offers brunch every weekend from 9:30am to 3pm. Bookings are essential and children are very welcome for brunch. For the paella and the suckling pig it’s recommended you order in advance to avoid the disappointment of missing out. The restaurant also has a “Spanish Despensa’ (a Spanish pantry) so that you can take some of the Spanish experience home with you.
Oh, and do try the red wine sangria whilst you are there mama! Salud!
My Little Spanish Place
619 Bukit Timah Road, Singapore 269720
Tel: (+65) 6463 2810