High Quality Spanish Cuisine; Room for Improvement

Jamoneria is the restaurant of ARC Iberico Imports, a retailer of fine Spanish gastronomic products. I have travelled extensively throughout Spain, and Spanish food has never been high on my list of favorite foods of the world. However, there are a couple things I am a big fan of – certain products (like Iberico ham which I agree, is one of the best in the world) and the really high end gastronomy like in the days of Ferran Adria. The more traditional dishes like most tapas and paella etc, I am not so much a fan.

I have wanted to try Jamoneria for some time now mainly because of the Iberico ham and the very high ratings. So, mainly due to some last minute planning on Valentine’s day, I made a reservation. The location is in Richmond (a suburb of Vancouver) and the place is located in a more industrial part of the city. Upon arrival we were told that the table was not ready. We were actually seated about 15-30 minutes past our reservation time. Its ok, these things happen, but it seemed like the staff was not in a rush to make up for the “lost” time. Maybe this is in keeping with the Spanish theme where service tends to be a bit (or a lot depending where you go) slower.

After being seated we were served a welcome glass of Cava and presented the menu.

Since it was Valentine’s day, flowers were being presented to ladies but the one at our table was apparently for someone else. The server took it away and promised to bring another which never arrived until I reminded him much later. So far, with this and the late start, not off to a good start. Also, with the menu, you were to select one dish from the choices but both people had to choose the same thing. To start, we had the olives which were pretty good but took forever to come. This was puzzling as no cooking was needed.

The next dish were various cheeses and two different hams. The cheeses were really good, especially with the cava and the ham was outstanding as expected.

I was glad they gave us the pata negra and a more “normal” ham so I could really taste the difference. The next dish was also really good with the blue cheese providing lots of umami with the chorizo and then the honey giving a nice sweetness to everything.

At some point in the evening, the candle at our table went out which no one noticed. Details matter! Anyway, the next dish was butter beans which I never had before. They were simply prepared, creamy and delicious.

The main course was a perfectly cooked and marbled blue fin tuna.

Finally for dessert, a family recipe cheesecake and the special Valentine’s dessert which were two chocolates.

All the desserts were amazing but I was disappointed that there were only two chocolates. Not because I care about quantity, but I think it was not thoughtful of the place to make two people share a bite sized chocolate.

Overall, the food was very good and of high Spanish standards. I noticed on their regular menu, some other items that I would love to come back for like a simple Iberico ham sandwich. Unfortunately, I think there is room for improvement in the service and attention to detail. Even so, I would go back.

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