First Look: Bodega Tapas and Wine Bar

Drinking sherry with your tapas is traditional and truly the right way to experience Spanish cuisine. There is a sherry for every kind of food and at Bodega, The Tapa Bar’s new sister location, where you can select from over a dozen classic sherry wines to pair with authentic Spanish tapas. A Bodega in Spain is typically a small shop and can range from a warehouse, a grocery store to a wine cellar. Partner and general manager of Bodega, Emily Henderson says:

“Traditionally, a Bodega is really anywhere familiar to get your sustenance.”

And that’s precisely the feeling and concept behind Victoria’s new Bodega; it offers a tapas experience that is relaxed and comfortable and the perfect spot to enjoy a pre-dinner, or late-night cocktail and a few bites (pintxos). The space, designed by Sandy Nygaard, is a mix of rustic and industrial with wrought iron and wood elements, modern and simple with soft textures and romantic lighting.

A true sherry enthusiast herself, Henderson advises the best way to enjoy tapas is with a sip of sherry. It’s traditional after all and goes back thousands of years in Spain.

Stay Tuned

Stay tuned for Holly’s upcoming article featuring a more in-depth look at the history of sherry and its resurgence into today’s cocktail scene.

Often times when people think of sherry, their grandma’s Bristol Cream (packs a sweet wallop) comes to mind. However, true sherry runs from bone dry to very sweet. Served in the cutest mini glasses, Henderson encourages me to try the house salty almonds with the Hidalgo Medium sherry and the briny green olives with the La Gitana Manzanilla – what a taste sensation! The Hidalgo’s caramel (rendering on Christmas cake) and nutty flavour almost made the almonds melt in the mouth, while the Manzanilla’s crisp, light and slightly saline taste paired perfectly with the olives.

Bodega Tapa Boards

Bodega’s menu features individual pintxos like serrano ham and manchego cheese on bite sized bread with house made tangy romesco sauce, mussels escabeche, chicken liver mousse with apple mostarda and the classic piquillo peppers stuffed with tuna, capers and olives. The daily pintxo board includes 3 different tapa specials and the Bodega Board is a steal for $20 with a selection of various charcuterie, cheeses, pickles and salads. If you’re new to sherry or even if you’re a connoisseur enquire about Bodega’s sherry flights; a selection of either 3 dry, off-dry  or an across the board tasting mix of sherries for $12.

The true tapas experience is in sharing it with others; it’s about the pleasure of enjoying a variety of foods with friends. It’s not about gorging on a big sit-down meal but rather the impromptu drop-in for a sumptuous bite to eat and a tasty beverage to wash it down:

“It’s a romantic way to eat [tapas]. It’s about the experience around food and the socializing that occurs when wandering from one place to the next enjoying tapas” says Henderson.

Looking for a fun night in Victoria? Keep your eyes and ears open for the upcoming Tapas Tour (currently in discussion). Between Catalano, Perro Negro, Chorizo & Co. and now Bodega this event is sure to be a hit; bouncing from one locale to the other sampling the finest tapas in town. Who wouldn’t love that?

Bodega Tapas and Wine Bar

1210 Broad Street

Victoria, B.C.


Hours: 4:00pm – 12:00am daily (currently closing earlier Sunday to Tuesdays).


Written By:

Holly Brooke is a true B.C. gal. Having lived on the west coast most of her life, except for several years in the Kootenay's where she canoed and fished and lived in a tipi, she's very much at home outdoors and in the kitchen. ...

Comments are closed.