Rakaposhi Brings Tapas from The Himalayas to La Laguna

Wed, May 28th, 2014 - By Colin

The sun shining over the Himalayan peaks just a few yards from the gleaming dome of the refurbished cathedral was not what I expected to see in La Laguna so I had to stop to check out the menu at the Rakaposhi Tapas Bar. Owner Ali Madad appeared and intrigued me further by explaining that Rakaposhi is the mountain near his village of Karimibad in the Hunza Valley by the China border.

 

Rakaposhi Tapas Bar, La Laguna

 

The photos adorning the walls told a tale of poor people showing great resilience in combatting a harsh landscape 2,500 metres above sea level. As a guide and porter, Ali has plenty of experience of the long distances between water stops and the long treks his neighbours regularly make for work or school. I needed to know more but first I ordered from the 9.50 euros starter, main course, dessert, and drink combination.

 

Croquettes Rakaposhi

 

Croquettes Rakaposhi was my base camp, the walnut chunks inside gave a memorable flavour especially when combined with the tangy apricot jam. A goat’s cheese salad with dried fruit, or a potato salad of the Boltoro region with a spicy touch were two of the other starters that crossed my mind. Before my main dish Ali told me more about his life.

“My wife is from La Laguna, we met when she was out trekking and we opened this bar a few months ago. It used to be a storage barn for the Sabadeños museum next door with two levels but we have opened it out into one.”

 

Rakaposhi Tapas Bar, La Laguna

 

I had already noticed the tall vaulted ceiling and the small courtyard out the back. A few other things caught my eye too, adverts for travel talks and a few basketball hoops. “We have evening guest travel speakers, India, Africa, and Oslo are the next subjects. Basketball is our way of helping the children of the villages in my homeland, we are collecting basic equipment to take over to encourage their interest and to tie it into schooling.”

 

Karakorum with Afghan fries and yoghurt

 

Our chat was pleasantly interrupted by the arrival of my main dish, meatballs of the Karakorum with Afghan fries and yoghurt. It was lovely, the carrots and potatoes were complimented by the mild rice sauce with a hint of dried apricot that they were cooked in, Ali added that they use a Polaw rice which is typical of Afghanistan. Sautéed vegetables was another option as were Karai chicken of the north (a stew with a light touch of spice) or Baltistan fried chicken, breaded in flour and skewered with spices.

 

Ali Madad, Rakaposhi Tapas Bar, La Laguna

 

A sweet rice dessert fired for a short burst rounded off the meal in style. I’m hoping that some of the Himalayan food might have a good effect on me, it’s quite common in Ali’s home to live to well over 100 years. I was quite happy though to have fortified myself for the tram back to Santa Cruz.

Rakaposhi Tapas Bar; tel (0034) 922 63 47 77; Capitan Brotons 9, La Laguna; open 9 to 5 pm and 8 pm to 1 am.

Posted : Wednesday, May 28th, 2014 at 11:27 am
Category : food and drink
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