Spice Lounge and Tapas (Mississauga)

Spice lounge and tapas

Spice Lounge and Tapas was bustling on my Saturday visit. In the corner, Spanish music was strummed live on a guitar; although enjoyable the volume could be turned down a pitch to allow easier conversations. After all, according to Wikipedia, tapas are designed for chats as the focus becomes more about people and shared foods rather than devouring a main on your own.

The smoked duck flatbread ($14), highly recommended by my friend and waitress, incorporated the right balance of sweet and savoury. The sliced grilled pears and drizzles of honey added sweetness while smoked duck breast and double smoked cheddar were substantial enough to keep the dish from turning into a dessert. As a suggestion, rather than using a hazelnut spread (which is somewhat gritty), a chestnut puree may offer a smoother base and incorporate a sweet earthiness that would work well amongst the other ingredients.

Spice lounge and tapas duck flatbread

What’s not to like about deep fried balls of creamy rice? Spice’s truffle mushroom croquettes ($12) were decent, the mushroom risotto mixed with white truffle oil before being rolled in a panko coating. The inside was slightly bland for my taste; more salt and cheese mixed into the rice may augment the flavours more.

Spice lounge and tapas risotto balls

Spice’s PEI mussels ($11) were beautifully presented; as the lid was removed we were presented with meticulously arranged mussels topped with vibrant red pepper slivers. Despite the menu’s description of saffron butter sauce, the liquid was a redder (perhaps on account of paprika) than the famed golden hue. Nonetheless, it was delicious and I only wish there was only more bread to soak it up.

Spice lounge and tapas mussels

The brick of chilli rubbed ribs ($16) was rather an ingenious way to help keep the meat warm.  Although it lacked the barque of a BBQ smoked rib, these slow braised ones were moist and well flavoured from the mix of Spanish spices and chipotle BBQ sauce.

Spice lounge and tapas ribs

To end, bunuelos ($8) or Mexican doughnuts, warm light balls of deep fried battered with a light anise flavor. The uneven bits poking out of the sphere became very crispy. Sweetened with cinnamon sugar and a diluted caramel sauce, it provided a sweet ending to the meal without being heavy.

Spice lounge and tapas bunelos

We chose to order a couple of dishes at a time to avoid the delicious but dreaded table filled with food and not knowing where to start. Spice presented them in an adequate succession, hot and fresh from the kitchen. Despite being a busy night, they never rushed us, providing ample time between reservations – there certainly was no two hour seating limit here. All in all, a delightful neighbourhood spot for some conversations and small bites.  

Overall mark - 7.5 out of 10

How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 52 Lakeshore Road East

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog

Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!

Is That It? I Want More!

Other Gastro World posts similar to this: