Restaurant Opening: La Viña, Lymington #review

We were invited to the opening of La Viña restaurant in Lymington, Hampshire last week.  The launch was a great opportunity to sample some authentic tapas, paella, and premium wines, in good company and lovely surroundings.

The beautiful location of Lymington is the fourth La Viña to open its doors, the others being in Hale, Liverpool and Manchester Deansgate, and comes from the same stable as the La Tasca brand.

Aimed at those who appreciate quality, culture and authenticity, the menu consists of fresh new ingredients, sourced directly from Spanish suppliers.  La Viña’s experienced chefs all come from different regions in Spain, spanning from Navarre to Andalusia, giving the restaurant a diverse range of dishes from the North of Spain to the South.

The chefs use the freshest, quality ingredients, and dishes range from paella cooked in a traditional style, to fragrant jamón Serrano from the cool Spanish mountains.

Hayley McMillan, General Manager at La Viña Lymington, said:
"Anyone visiting La Viña will be stunned by our passion for home-cooked Spanish cuisine, our aim is to deliver a sincere Spanish experience to the residents and tourists of Lymington whatever the occasion. Situated in the idyllic market town on the Southern edge of the New Forest, we offer a more sophisticated approach to Spanish dining and hope that, in time, it will become a regular place to dine out for the local residents."
We had a fantastic evening with staff who couldn't have been more friendly and attentive, especially with our tutu-clad girls!  Lara had a great time dancng around the wooden floors, blowing out the candles, chatting, and generally entertaining everyone.  She rocked a Gap tutu, vintage top, leggings from Auntie Sara in New Zealand, and new flashy lights pink shoes from Clarks!

Sophia was busy taking everything in, and happily being admired by everyone in her own little tutu outfit, courtesy of Next; shoes from Inch Blue.

We were greeted with a very welcome glass of delicious sangria, fresh bread, olives and dips. Lara and I especially loved the yummy red pepper dip, and Steve really enjoyed the 18 month-matured serrano ham, which the manager carved for everyone.

We sampled some fabulous red and white wines, although unfortunately I had to be careful with the drive home ahead of me!  The higher-priced Faustino Rioja was outstanding.

The paella was cooked in an enormous authentic dish in front of us, and was by all accounts delicious - as you can see there wasn't much left after firsts, but everyone went back for seconds, and even thirds! 

We vegetarians were very well catered for with lovely tapas, including Manchego cheese with semi-dried tomatoes, Tortilla, and my favourite Patatas Bravas.  We also had Croquetas de Espanicas, a dish I wouldn't have ordered from the menu as I'm not over-keen on goats' cheese, but they were delicious!  Very mild and creamy, which Lara really liked too.  Next time we'll be trying the mushroom and aubergine dishes, which sound divine.

By the end of the night, the girls were utterly exhausted, but we had all had a brilliant time.

The decor and ambience of the restaurant, the attentive staff, and the combination of delicious, fresh, well-cooked food and wonderful wines, would make for a fantastic evening out, and we highly recommend a visit if you find yourself near either the Lymington restaurant, or one of the Northern branches.

They also offer a good value lunchtime menu, and a children's menu.

And don't forget to enter our competitions!