Ocho. The Spanish word for eight. The luckiest number in Chinese culture. The atomic number of oxygen. The nights of Hanukkah. The number of ingredients in each wonderful dish at Ocho.
Located at 19 Pitsford Street, Ocho is the latest pop-up in the Jewellery Quarter and it made our Mediterranean dreams come true. Taking inspiration from the Spanish tradition of Tapas and the Mediterranean flavours of Spain and Portugal, Purnell’s Bistro former head chef Tomek Iwanicki has made us feel like our palates were on holiday.
The menu includes 9 tapas dishes, 2 sides and 2 desserts. Each dish came in different, uniquely designed, serving plates. The aesthetic of the dishes was as enticing as the wonderful smells coming out of the kitchen and it was very much representative of the cuisine they were inspired by. Fresh parsley, edible flowers and colourful fresh fruit really accentuated the overall presentation and suggest at first glance the inevitable freshness of the first bite.
Whilst each tapas dish was wonderful in its own way, one of them was the real star of the meal: the red pesto courgette tagliatelle. The unbelievably creamy sauce and the combination of fresh flavours and semi-crunchy textures made our palates dance with joy.
Both sides options were potato dishes, one with Arrabbiata sauce and one flavoured with chili and coriander and both were enriched by citrus tones which only added to the already obvious freshness of the ingredients.
Now, the part that all of us were waiting for: the dessert. There are two dessert options on the menu, the orange and lime cheesecake and the chocolate and raspberry mousse. Trust us when we tell you, GET THE MOUSSE! Indulgent was an empty word before we tried the chocolate raspberry mousse at Ocho, now it has a whole new meaning. It is everything you have been waiting for in a dessert and if you have a sweet tooth you should not miss it. Of course, we asked for more information about this magical mousse that made our soul dance… It is made with chickpea water (aquafaba) and melted chocolate, giving it an extra fluffy, yet light, quality to it. With being made out of chickpea water it is also a lighter option for all you waistline-obsessed people out there.
To wrap it up, Ocho is the popup of the year in our books and it should be yours too!