Centro Lounge, Loughborough, January 2017

Another evening at Centro Lounge can probably only mean one thing. A cinema trip. It has become our post cinema haunt, but a change of itinerary tonight meant that it became our pre-cinema haunt.

If that change wasn’t too much to take in, here’s another one.

Wine!

Tonight was “Tapas Tuesday” where you can get three dishes and a glass of house wine for £9.95. A pretty simple offer, very clearly stated on the menu, and most people were partaking.

Except it confuses the bar staff. If you order this offer, stating you want to order “Tapas Tuesday”, for some utterly unknown reason (although the cynic in me can hazard a guess), they assume that you don’t want the free glass of wine that comes with it unless you very slowly and carefully specify that you want the free glass of wine that comes with it. So you stand at the bar staring at the staff. You ask where your wine is. “You didn’t order any wine”. “This offer comes with wine.” “You have to ask for it.” Even though the menu clearly states that it comes with wine.

As you might have guessed, this annoyed me. Implying that I’m an idiot because I didn’t order the thing that the menu explicitly states comes with the thing that I ordered. I think a change of policy is required. Or maybe a spot of training.

On to the food. We ordered 6 dishes between us:-

Patatas bravas with roasted garlic mayo (2 portions, pictured below)
Chicken teriyaki skewers with sesame dressing
Beef and pork meatballs in a tomato & red wine sauce
Honey-glazed shredded five-spice pork
Salt and pepper squid with lemon mayo

I was underwhelmed by the patatas bravas. The potatoes should be crisp and golden after a nice roasting in the oven. The sauce should have finely chopped onion, garlic, paprika and usually a touch of chilli. And if that mayo had roasted garlic in, I’m a monkey’s uncle. Uninspiring. And actually not all the necessary as the dishes are served with some good fresh ciabatta, which is great for mopping up sauces.

The chicken teryaki skewers were very nice, as was the five spice pork. Although these Asian flavours don’t sit easily alongside the more traditional meatballs (albondigas) and potatoes. The squid sits a little better, although a sprinkling of pimenton would have tipped it a bit more towards Spain.

After we finished, we nipped next door to watch Passengers, which was really good apart from just a couple of scenes that needed to be reined in a bit. A great slow build of menace…

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