Friday night I decided to go to a new tapas spot that opened up in the Flatiron district called Boqueria. I walked in to a packed house which I expected. There is a nice looking bar up front with various cheeses enclosed by glass. Some small bar tables along the wall, and then a room in back with a long communal table in the middle. This was one of the draws of the restaurant that drew me. I envisioned myself eating at this long table and striking up a conversation with the neighboring diners. Alas, when I told the hostess it was just me she pointed to the bar area, where she said I could eat. All the seats were taken so I took up the only spot available; standing in the corner by the entrance in front of the gal in charge of the cheese. It was very uncomfortable but I didn't mind as long as I could try some food.

I started my meal with a $9 glass of Spanish wine. The wine was good, but the bartender, (who by the way needed to smile more-he seemed nice but I wished for a more positive vibe) I feel underpoured the glass. He finished what was left in the bottle, and I thought he might come back to add some more-he didn't. I struck up a conversation with the "cheese" gal, and asked her for some recommendations. Her being the "cheese" gal she started talking to me with her Spanish accent about the various cheeses they had. I didn't really understand her, so I just nodded and told her to give me three of her recommendations. The cheeses came with three pieces of toasted rasin bread. I honestly have no idea what I type of cheese I was eating, but can tell you all were good. I liked how they were all different from each other, in texture as well as taste. This was definitely a nice start to a meal, and at $4 per cheese, I found it to be a great deal. This is definitely a nice spot for a date.

After fifteen minutes some seats opened up for me at the bar next to me, so I got to sit. I decided to order another glass of wine and some tapas. Alas, my wine was poured to the same amount. I'm either not experienced enough in proper pourage or I was being ripped off, either way, the wine still tasted nice. I decided to order the three creamy croquetas and the grilled lamb tapas.

The croquetas came with serrano ham, chicken and mushrooms. They were very creamy and tasted nice. Although there was much more cream flavor then chicken or ham, I still enjoyed them.

The grilled lamb was marinated in lemon and cumin and came on two skewers on two pieces of small toasted baguettes. The lamb was tender and tasty and the lemon and cumin gave the flavor a nice kick.

That is all I ordered. I just wanted to get my first look into this new tapas joint. I think I'll come back with some more people and order some more of their bigger dishes. But I'll make sure, before we go, to drink one or two bottles of wine first.

53 W. 19th Street (bet. 5th and 6th Ave.)

New York, NY 10011