There is a gem of a kitchen tucked into the heart of Mamaroneck Avenue: Tentempié Madrid. Chef Carlos Santofimia and his wife Fiorella have created a culinary treasure that offers the intimacy of being a guest in their home. You would have to travel to Spain to find more authentic tapas. Their full bookings show that the consensus has clearly grown among local diners.
Tentempié means a “snack between meals,” but plan to leave full and satisfied after sharing selections of hot and cold tapas, cheese and charcuterie boards, or paella. Much of the fun is deciding the combination of flavors you and your companions want to explore that evening. Chef Carlos’ menu honors regional specialties from all over the Iberian peninsula as well as personal recipes from his grandmother (pixto a la yaya).
Guest favorites include croquetas (of ham, chicken, or cod); gambas al ajillo (garlic shrimp); pulpo a la gallega (octopus and potatoes); tortilla; and costillas de cordero (braised lamb short rib in brandy sauce), and patata bravas (spicy potatoes with aioli). There is something for everyone.
While paella is always on the menu, special paellas should be ordered up to a day or two ahead as seafood is brought in fresh daily.
To keep things simple, Chef Carlos, a madrileño himself (native of Madrid), offers two of Spain’s most celebrated desserts: crema catalana, and the best churros available outside Plaza Mayor. “We try to keep dessert simple while classic,” he says.
Vino & Sangria
Slow-cooked sauces as well as the chemistry of aged cheeses (mahon, manchego) and meats (jamon serrano, chorizo) are enhanced when paired with quality wine or sangria. Here again, Chef Santofimia offers expertise. “My father was in the wine business. He educated me about our wine regions and grapes and taught me to create pairings that would enhance my flavors.” Engage Carlos about this favorite topic; you will be rewarded to let him recommend a wine or custom sangria.
Tentempié Madrid seats only 20 indoors, so be sure to secure a reservation ahead of time. Outdoor dining is available in the summer. 260 Mamaroneck Avenue (across from the Cinema). 914-630-2694. Hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 5-10 pm.