I spent a few hours at 1252 Tapas with several other folks at their open house to welcome their new chef, Wes Tyler. We were served a multiple-course sampler as we enjoyed complimentary beverages. I was attending this event alone, so I was happy to see A couple of foodie friends walk in the door! Great company is just as important as good food!
The first course was a gazpacho. It was okay to me. Cool and refreshing, but tastes like a freshly made salsa without the spice.
Next up were the Little Bunny Fufu Empanadas (officially listed on the menu as Rabbit Empanadas). These were one of the standouts of the meal. The herbed rabbit and tetilla cheese went so well with the aioli. So tasty and I would have never known I was eating the Easter Bunny. Definitely something I'd order again.
It was hard to top what came out next. Most of you know this is my year to expand my palate, so this was my first time to have mussels and clams. The butter, Pernod, and garlic sauce was nothing short of outstanding. We absolutely couldn't get enough of it and used more than our fair share of bread to soak up the delectable sauce. Richard is not a fan of seafood, and he loved this dish as well. I'd love to figure out how to replicate the sauce in my own kitchen.
Next up we were served goat cheese caprese with goat cheese, honey, raisins and tomatoes. In the spirit of trying everything, I gave this a shot, but I should have known better. I cannot tolerate goat cheese. Although this was not as repulsive as normal (yes, I hate it that much), the aftertaste lingered on my palate even after washing it down with some more bread and Pernod sauce. Even though I didn't like it, someone who likes goat cheese would think this is good. The honey complimented the cheese well. If you like goat cheese, I'd give this app a whirl. It's certainly a different twist on the caprese I know, but that's okay.
We were quickly served out first main course, a filet stuffed with Brie and wrapped in bacon with a honey cava sauce. The steak was good, a bit over done, but had a nice flavor. The potatoes served with the steak had at savory sauce on them which was very good.
The paella was the letdown of the meal. I don't eat much rice, but it had a nice flavor; however, all of the proteins were overcooked. I may try it again on a regular visit and see how it is.
Finally, we were served some homemade chocolate chip strawberry ice cream for dessert. It was a great way to end a wonderful dining experience with some definite highlights.
The empanadas and clams were the standouts. If you haven't been to 1252 at Market Street in a while, I encourage you to give them another chance. A new chef can breathe new life into a place. This was my first time there, and I'd like to go back when I'm with friends and in the mood for drinks and small bites.