Best Spanish Restaurant (1999)

El Bodegon Gallego

We've got your budget Cuban, reasonable Nicaraguan, moderately priced Peruvian, homey Mexican. We've even got easy-to-afford Dominican and Panamanian places. But when it comes to Spanish fare, the cuisine that sparked all these derivations, most of the good stuff is pretty pricey. Enter El Bodegon Gallego, and don't go anywhere. Not only is this narrow, storefront Spanish eatery the best in the city (no holds barred, unless you count the iron shielding the windows), it's ridiculously cheap. Like the sopa de mariscos, a huge bowl of tomato-based seafood broth stocked with fresh mussels, jumbo shrimp, and tender squid, for $3.95. Tapas-size portions of potato tortilla run you a whopping $1.50. Main courses, including a healthy portion of arroz con pollo con chorizo or a skirt steak with rice and plantains, top out at $6.95. In fact fresh-made sangría is just about the most expensive item on the menu, which is, we should add, so authentic there isn't even Casa Juancho


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