The beauty of tapas is that you can try so many tastes on one night out.
Often when we go for a review wife Ruth and I pick at one another’s meals anyway but here it’s in the middle and we can pick at it all to our heart’s content.
We took son George who loves a meal out.
The venue was The Tannery on Halifax Road at Hipperholme which has been there for four years now. Part of it is a pub packed with plenty of character such as Victorian photos and wooden walls while it also has a sizable conservatory roomy enough for several diners.
We’d booked in advance and when we arrived we were informed there was a large group of young women in the conservatory celebrating a birthday and warned they were quite loud so would we prefer a table in a snug corner of the main pub.
George loves a bit of commotion so we went in there and yes, they were loud - everything was hashtag this or hashtag that – and they laughed a lot.
It added to the atmosphere.
It’s good to laugh, apparently.
The deal is four dishes for £20 served with plenty of fresh bread on a longboard stretching across the table along with any dips you want such as their homemade tomato sauce and garlic mayonnaise.
We reckoned six dishes would be enough for the three of us.
They were chilli beef nachos served with a huge dollop of sour cream on top and cheese, patatas bravas in homemade tomato sauce, garlic mushrooms in a cream sauce, sweet peppers with halloumi cheese served with a chilli and honey dressing, chorizo in cider and tiger prawns sizzling in garlic and chilli oil (£2.50 supplement).
It sounded like a feast ... and when it arrived it was a feast.
If it had already been shared out on three big plates it would have looked huge – over-facing even – but in the small dishes it just seemed so enticing.
You put a bit on your plate, polish that off and then a bit more. It’s a drip feed dinner and you can quickly lose track of how much you’ve eaten - not that there’s anything wrong in that.
You’re on a meal out after all so any dieting rule book can be merrily chucked out of the window.
Turns out that, like sports days at some politically correct schools, all the dishes were winners. The surprise package was the sweet peppers with the sweetness of the mustard getting a kick from the chilli.
Plenty of garlic and chilli covered the prawns – dipping the bread in that was a simple yet highly effective pleasure - and the same goes for the creamy mushrooms. The sauce there had a slight edge to it. The chorizo nestles in plenty of cider while every tapas needs some potato in there somewhere and the patatas bravas did the trick here. Biggest dish of the lot was the chilli beef nachos – that one seemed to go on and on yet we finished everything – and most of the dishes were wiped clean with the bread.
Although we’d pitched the amount of food just right for the sake of the review - rather than the size of our collective stomachs - we still somehow managed to share a chocolate fondue with flapjack, shortbread, strawberries and marshmallow.
We asked if it was a large dish and the very helpful waitress said the three of us could share it.
The clue in the reply was that it was a big dish – in fact another longboard – and the three of us gave it a good try dipping the fantastic flapjack, marshmallows and thin shortbread into the dish of warm chocolate. Even the strawberries went in too. We tried to fool ourselves that they counted as one of our five a day.
We were fooling no-one, not even ourselves.
A lovely meal in lively surroundings although normally the smooth music coming out of the speakers would have been the over-riding ambience rather than these girls having a cracking night out.
At one point near the end of the meal birthday girl said: “Put you hand up if you’re going into town to carry on the party.”
I was sorely tempted to put mine up and yell ‘count me in’ but, let’s face it, I’m no party animal and I doubt my dining companions have let me go anyway.
So it was back home for a horlicks and bed.
Halifax Road, Hipperholme, Halifax. West Yorkshire
Phone: 01422 201631
Opening hours: Closed Monday. Food served Tues-Fri 5-9pm; Sat 12noon-9pm and Sun 3pm-6.45pm.
The bill: £51.75
Would you go back: Yes