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Week in Reviews: Bar Pintxo, The Waffle, Craft and More

Alen Lin, 1/25/08

S. Irene Virbila feels the need to school all the detractors about Joe Miller's Bar Pintxo: Tapas are single servings to nibble on, not big portions for multi-course dining, and just drink the Spanish wines. This all said with a heavy dose of "quit your bitching" sensed between words. As much as Miss Irene appreciates Miller's attempts at running an almost traditional tapas bar, she has her quibbles with portions:

His seem oversized compared with Spanish versions. It's as if he wants to pile enough stuff on top that he can charge $4 or $5 each. (He's got serious overhead, more probably than a typical tapas bar in Spain has to float.) And it's these real tapas -- pieces of bread topped with chorizo, tuna salad or tomato -- that are the least satisfying items on the menu, oddly enough, though I do like the simple and classic grilled bread rubbed with fresh tomato and topped with serrano ham.
If you must eat a meal, get the paella, a seat at the bar and sip and nibble. And by the way, the bar stools inside are indeed uncomfortable, but they weren't designed for marathon dining. Bar Pintxo gets one-and-a-half stars. [LAT]

ELSEWHERE: Going for cocktails and settling for food, an overall pleasant experience at The Waffle; Kabuki still sucks, even when its free; snacks and pie at The Trails in Griffith Park; brunch and cheese at Auntie Em's in Eagle Rock; carbs and quick lunch at Yabu in West Hollywood; and Craft has finally come into its own.