BREAKING NEWS is that the lease was signed this week for Sydney city north Chifley Square for what will be the fourth Encasa venue in Sydney (and the third in the CBD) with the Encasa clan now claiming the length of the city.
Encasa Restaurant: the first of the Spanish Encasa venues, the signature restaurant in Pitt Street Haymarket underwent a major renovation and expansion earlier this year. At the Encasa Restaurant you'll find traditional Spanish food and drinks from pastas and pizzas to salads and tapas and sangria. Every dish is well crafted, very tasty and great value. We like this joint immensely.
While the woodfired pizza oven greets you at the Pitt Street door, it's hard to go past the vast selection of excellent tapas when dining here. Most are around sixteen bucks and a generous plate.
Bravas ($11.50) is the most popular of the tapas; the fried potatoes are served with aioli and a spicy tomato salsa. Recommended from the long tapas list are Pulpo a la Plancha grilled baby octopus ($16.50), Alcachofas marinated artichokes ($10.00), the best magical Gambas al Ajillo peeled king prawns in sizzling garlic oil and chilli ($16.00), Chorizo a la Plancha grilled Spanish sausage ($12.50), Pinchos de Pollo grilled chicken skewers tossed in green mojo ($14.00), Albondigas beef meatballs in almond sauce ($14.00), and Tortilla de Patata 2 eggs cooked to order Spanish omelette with potato and onion ($10.50). See what we mean about great value!
For a minimum of two people, there is also a very good saffron paella that's bountiful with chicken and seafood (for just $26 per person).
Encasa Deli: Just as hard to keep away from are the boquerones from the Encasa Deli blackboard in Bathurst Street. While most of the punters here buy takeaway from a long queue at lunchtime, there are also stools for sitting in and looking out at passers-by or the more interesting view on the wine barrels of the Spanish food. Circa ten bucks, or just a little more, are the huge long rolls - with scrumptious fillings such as the Boquerones ($11) Spanish white anchovies, confit piquillo peppers and roast garlic aioli - they are truly a delicious feast.
But don't overlook the Encasa Deli sweet offerings such as the decadent caramel éclair or the perfect indulgence the Dulce de Leche caramel filled crumbly cookie cakes Alfajores. Encasa Deli also sells marvellous Portuguese egg tarts.
Encasa Deli as the name suggests also overflows with Spanish smallgoods such as exquisite jamon, black puddings, cheese and oils. They make an excellent sit in snack, or a terrific way to pick up your Encasa Spanish take home fix.
Encasa also has a newly opened Deli combo in Lane Cove.
Encasa Express: is planned to open on the lower ground floor Chifley Square Sydney this August. It will be a hybrid of the two formats - restaurant and deli - and as the name suggests, Encasa Express will offer the deli items prepackaged for speedy take-aways.
Each of the current Encasa venues proudly display this smiling Encasa lady on the wall. And she'll recline on the wall at Encasa Express too.