Photos By Jonny Grave, Words By Brandon Wetherbee
Paella isn’t good for one. It should be shared in large groups. Estadio’s new Wednesday night paella dinner series is good for groups.
Estadio, the consistently busy Logan Square Spanish restaurant, is fantastic for happy hour and weekends. And very difficult to get a seat during happy hour and weekends. The new midweek series helps illuminate both staples and one-night-only specials on Chef Rufino Bautista’s menu.
One of paella’s finer aspects is the leftovers. A couple will not finish an order. A group of four will not if small plates are ordered. So when it comes to what you want to eat, consider what you want to take home. If you’re going home without tomorrow’s lunch, order the Pescados & Mariscos Paella with calamari, shrimp, scallops, mussels. It’s the best of the Estadio paella staples and something you shouldn’t reheat at work because seafood should never be reheated in a common space.
The Chicken Chorizo Morcilla Paella with chicken thighs, baby chorizos, & crumbles of Morcilla sausage is very good in the restaurant and very good the next day. It’s rich and satisfying, hot or cold.
The Vegetarian Paella with mushroom, asparagus and Piquillo peppers is fine and should only be ordered if you’re with a table of vegetarians. If your diet allows fish, go with the Pescados & Mariscos. That’s the treat of the three. If you’re a vegetarian, that’s very nice. Good for you. I was a vegetarian too. But I’m happy I can eat calamari, shrimp, scallops and mussels in a paella.
This is supposed to be be about the paella dinners but it’s difficult to round up 3 people on Wednesday night so here’s what to order when you’re there during normal dinner hours: small plates, dessert and drinks. The soft shell crab sandwich, Mango Copa, Fresh Mango, Sorbet, Granita & Crema and Aviation Gin & Rhubarb Cardomom Tonic is a meal that will impress a date, satisfy a regular or remind the casual diner that Estadio tends to be busy for multiple reasons. The soft shell crab sandwich may be the best thing on the Estadio menu.