It’s hard to keep up with all the new eateries opening in Broadway Market these days, with what feels like a new one popping up each week. As space becomes a premium in Broadway market, new eateries are being located further inside, down passageways which have previously been closed in the evening. Kova is one of these eateries housed a bit further into the market, just past The Sea Garden. Its offer of a menu from the Basque region was enticing, and we were looking forward to trying it out.
We were warmly welcomed and chose somewhere to sit at the 3 long tables they had set up in the walkway. The menu has been devised by three Michelin starred chefs in Spain and, like the other places in the market, was short and focused. What was really clear, right from the start, was just how passionate the owner is about this venture and the food. The chefs too, seemed to be enjoying the opportunity to come up with new dishes and they had already added an additional dish and an additional dessert.
To get us going we decided to order some bread with 3 different flavoured butters. This was all really nice and included a coriander butter, a paprika butter and a pepper butter.
Next we chose some pinxtos, selecting the roasted peppers and the mackerel. We then selected one of each of the small plates (we were writing a review after-all) and to wash it down we chose a glass of wine each.
The pinxtos arrived and both were served on toasted bread. The peppers were packed with flavour which was enhanced by the accompanying aubergine cream and pickled onions. The bread was a little over-toasted for my liking, which made it hard to cut, but that is just a personal preference.
The cured mackerel was also served on toasted bread, along with avocado puree, cubes of pickled cucumber, and sliced olives. Again, the toasted bread made it a little difficult to cut neatly, with it breaking apart all too easily. The mackerel was a little over-powered by the avocado and olive, but the pickled cucumber added a nice bite of acidity and freshness to the dish.
The first of the small plates to arrive was the Arroz Negro, which was cuttlefish ink rice. This was served with small spots of aioli around the side (it needed a bit more of this). This dish had a really good depth of flavour and a silky texture. There were also bits of cuttlefish in there which made it really enjoyable to eat.
The other 2 small plates were served at the same time, and these were easily the best dishes of the meal. The Txuleta was made up of two pieces of grilled beef with padron peppers, spring onions, mushrooms, celeriac puree and a piquillo pepper sauce. The beef was tender and nicely cooked although perhaps it lacked a little in flavour, which was strange given it had been hung and dry aged for quite a period of time. The other items on the plate worked well and complimented the beef, but a bit more sauce would have been great.
The cod was cooked perfectly, breaking up into flakes of meat when pulled with the fork. The crispy fish skin was lovely, as was the asparagus and the quail egg which added a touch of richness to the dish. There was only a small amount of potato puree which wasn’t a problem, but again a bit more of the Kova style pilpil sauce (a sauce from the Basque region, traditionally made with olive oil, garlic and chili) would have been great.
Finally, one of us opted for a dessert and chose the manzana a la cidre. This was served in a glass and consisted of spheres of apple which had been marinated in cider, with a white chocolate cream, spots of mint and lime gel and, intriguingly, a celery foam. This went down really well, including the celery foam which actually quite refreshing.
It may not be a great photo, but it was a lovely desert.
We enjoyed our meal at Kova, we’ve no doubt that they will be updating their menu regularly so we’ll be back again soon, and we think it’s definitely worth checking out if you fancy some tasty treats from the Basque Country.