Sometimes you buy a Groupon or discount meal and it’s forgettable, or something you don’t regret doing but nothing too special. But sometimes, you buy a discount meal, and it introduces you to a new spot that you love, a place you are so thankful you took the chance and tried. Always the hope, right?
Maybe a year ago, I bought a Groupon to Euzkadi, a tapas restaurant in the East Village. The website describes the food as “Basque cuisine.” Basque Country is described as a region located on the coast of the Bay of Biscay, which straddles parts of north-central Spain and south-western France. We have now been to Euzkadi 3 times, which in NYC, is a lot for one year! The second time was when I saw another Groupon and the third was on our own. Both Groupons were the same amazing deal, 5 tapas and 2 desserts for $35!
Euzkadi has a wonderful set menu plus great specials. We’ve had excellent crostinis, Pintxos de Setas y Jamon, mushroom, Serrano ham and aioili for $10.95. This dish was so great we ordered a second round after plowing through the first. Last time we had a crostini special, Pintxo de Albondiga y Espinaca, Duck meatballs and sautéed spinach on toast with melted cheese) for $9.95. Crostini tapas came with 3 pieces per order.
An interesting choice from our last visit was Piquillos al Tar-Tar de Atun, Piquillo peppers stuffed with spicy tuna tar-tar, served with fennel, for $12.95.
Euzkadi’s patatas bravas were recommended to me by a co-worker and they were amazing, a huge portion of crispy fried cubed spicy potatoes, w/ spicy aioli for $8.95. We particularly enjoyed Entrecote a la Plancha, Seared Steak w/ Russian salad & scallion Chimichurre, $13.95. Russian salad is a potato salad with vegetables and mayonnaise.
Another favorite was a special, Mejillones al Ajillo, Mussels sautéed in sofrito sauce. For $10.95, it was a great deal, a big portion with plump pretty mussels and the spicy garlicky sofrito sauce was addicting and perfect for dipping the crusty bread in. The bread, by the way, comes with an olive tapenade, and changed Craig’s mind about olives. We recommend getting some olive oil on the side to dilute the tapenade just a bit.
Two of the three times we dined our meal came with desserts, and we quite enjoyed them. We tried Bunuelos de Chocolate, Deep fried chocolate truffles served over ice cream, Tarta de Melocotones, Peach tart with a layer of almonds, and Budin de Pan, Bread pudding on a bed of crème anglais over our 3 visits. The desserts were a bit overpriced at $8.95 due to small portions, particularly the fried chocolate truffles. But still nice to end a spicy, savory meal with these sweet dishes.
Euzkadi offers enticing daily specials, like Sunday and Mondays from 5-7 pm is 50% off tapas. Tuesday nights have live music and flamenco dancing. And Tuesday through Thursday, they offer a $50 dinner for 2, featuring a meat & cheese platter, paella, dessert, and a bottle of wine or sangria caraffe.
Lastly, the murals and cool hand-painted artwork on the walls make for a festive and funky interior and the wine selection and red and white sangrias were both great.
Visit Euzkadi next time you want a fun dining experience where you get to try lots of things. Perfect for a catch up with friends, group or solo date, or celebration. The intimate size and cool village location add to the experience.
108 East 4th Street, located between 1st and 2nd Avenues.