Lola Rojo, the Spanish restaurant and deli in Battersea, shot to fame a few years back when it was featured on Gordon Ramsay's quest for the best local restaurant on the F Word. Run by the husband and wife team of Antonio Belles and Cristina Garcia it's been a big success in the area. Now they're expanding by opening a new sherry and tapas bar, Rosita, just a bit further down Northcote Road.
We caught up with Cristina Garcia to find out what the new place will be like...
What made you decide to open the new restaurant?
The idea of opening a second venue has been in our minds for the last couple of years but it takes a while to find the right place.
We think that there are plenty of people in the area for a new venue with a different product. Battersea clientele are very supportive in terms of independent business and they are also open minded on trying new ideas.
Antonio and I will be supervising both restaurants and working very closely, as we like to do, with our chefs and managers.
What can you tell us about Rosita?
Rosita & the Sherry Bar will be mainly based around sherry and natural food.
The menu is organised with several tapas that match with sherries but are not necessarily Spanish. Main courses will be cooked on a Josper oven (Catalan charcoal oven) that we have brought specially from Spain. There will be a variety of local meats and "toro de lidia" as well as Iberian pork, fish and seafood and a list of side orders and home made sauces to choose from.
Our customers will have the choice of a meal based on tapas or a couple of tapas to entertain and then a charcoal main course.
What can you tell us about the drinks?
We will have 25 sherries on our wine list, including 4 VORS. You'll have the opportunity to sample different sherries for a set price and we are going to have more on the Specials Board.
The wine list will also have a few reds, roses, whites and cavas but we have ovbiously given priority to the sherry this time.
And finally, what can you tell us about the design?
We have commisioned Marc Jesus, a Spanish artist that lives in Menorca where we spend a few days of the year to relax, to do a 3 metre painting of ladies (rositas) happily drinking sherry on a sea background. All the rest has been designed with a few of our ideas by Andy Hardwood from Design LSM (Burger & Lobster) and Bluecrow projects (Granger & Co).
Rosita is due to open on November 6 2012.