Happy birthday to me!

This weekend we celebrated my birthday at Wushu with a few of our very good friends here in Barcelona. Paul, Wushu’s talented dessert chef, even made me a special cake and we spent an amazing four hours at the restaurant, enjoying the company, the many bottles of cava, and, of course, Brad’s amazing food.

friends

I had my favourite dish – the red curry with roasted duck (on the left) and next time I’ll try the laksa (on the right):

curry laksa

cake

There are more pictures on my flickr site. It was a very busy weekend, which included dinner at Wushu on friday night with other friends, shopping in Gracia on saturday morning for a lunch on sunday that Jackie and I were organizing, then dinner at Wushu again on saturday night and finally a big lunch on sunday, when I cooked a not-so-traditional Brazilian feijoada for friends. Tomorrow we catch the high speed train to Segovia. It’s probable that I won’t be accessing internet there so stay tuned for a report on the trip to Segovia some time next weekend!

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Wushu has a new website!

Check it out. All the pictures under “menu” and “novedades” (which appear when you click on “ubicacion”) are mine. The middle picture in the middle is also mine. I’ve had everything on their menu and had a plato del dia at least once a week – always something different, which isn’t on the regular menu – and I can tell that Brad is very talented. Everything is to die for. I love everything about it. We started going there in September 2006. Brad and Paula certainly deserve all the success and recognition they can get. This is what it says on their home page:

Bienvenidos a Wushu Restaurant,

Wushu abrió sus puertas por primera vez en un pequeño local detrás del mercado de Sta. Caterina, en Agosto de 2006. Con dos woks y cinco mesas solamente, un año y medio más tarde llegó el momento de trasladarnos a nuestra ubicación actual; una bonita avenida en el centro histórico de Barcelona, en el barrio del Borne.
La filosofía de wushu sigue siendo la misma: ofrecer una cocina de calidad a un precio asequible. Ingredientes exóticos y productos frescos, recetas caseras y generosidad.

Nuestro chef australiano Brad Ainsworth ha trabajado con algunos de los mejores chefs de Sydney, Tailandia y China. Ha elaborado un menú con orígenes en el sudeste asiático, cuya especialidad son los currys tailandeses; se hacen a mano en el local. Además, los platos se preparan al momento y nos enorgullece decir que solamente se hace un salteado por wok, para que tenga el característico sabor ahumado. También todos nuestros postres son caseros.

Ven a comer o a cenar en un ambiente relajado y con un servicio atento. Descubre en nuestro bar cockteles con un toque exótico como el mojito al té verde y el bloody geisha y una carta de vinos con pocas referencias cuidadosamente escogidas.

Wushu

I’m sad… I was looking forward to going to Wushu at least twice during our five days in Barcelona (for lunch and dinner). I knew there was a possibility they might close because of the holidays so I called today to make sure. Unfortunately, they will be closed for the entire time since they are going to Asturias spend Christmas with Paula’s family. They told me they will be moving to a slightly bigger location as well in the new year. Let’s hope the spirit of the place is maintained… Meanwhile I’ll have to wait another six months for my red curry…

Meeting friends from the blogosphere

Bruna is a Brazilian web designer who spent many years in France and now lives here in Barcelona. Cris is a Brazilian chemist, who lives in Paris where she does a master in chemistry and works for L’Oreal. We first met in the blogosphere and today we met in person for the first time.

Girls out for lunch

I discovered Bruna’s blog when I was searching for info on living in Barcelona. Somehow her blog came up and I got hooked right away. She seems to be a very positive and adventuresome person, and we would post the odd comment on each other’s blog. She’s also a great writer. I’ve discovered Cris’s blog through Bruna’s site recently and have enjoyed reading her impressions of Paris, a city I love.

Bruna and I have been trying to get together for a while and with Cris in town for a few days, we decided to grab the opportunity and have lunch together. We went to Wushu (no, it’s not the only restaurant in this city! this time it was Bruna’s fault; she suggested it) for lunch where Cris and I had the special of the day:

Curry Rojo con Ternera

Curry rojo con ternera & boniatos (red curry with beef & sweet potatoes)

While Bruna had this wonderful dish:Curry Verde con Gambas y Vieiras

Curry verde con vierias & gambas (green curry with shrimp & scallops) [must have it next time, it looked very yummy]

For dessert, we all had the dessert that came with the special of the day:

Tatin de Manzana

Tatin de manzana con gelado de coco (Apple pie with coconut ice cream)

We walked out very happy and I wish I could have gone with them to explore the city. Alas, I had to work…

But now that I know where Bruna lives and since she swims very near where I work, maybe we can get together more often ;)

Wushu – New season

Yesterday we introduced our new friends Kim & Steve to our favourite restaurant in Barcelona. Wushu had been closed for about 2 weeks while Brad & Paula did some work on the place and took a much-needed vacation.

They started the new year with a new menu. Some of the basis remained – Brad’s amazing thai curries and attention to detail were still there – but dishes changed somewhat. The red curry – which I love! – now comes with duck & eggplant, the yakisoba comes with kanagaroo meat, and there’s a new green curry with prawns that looked really yummy. The prices of the mains went up a notch and the list of appetizer grew. According to Brad, they wanted to make the place more “restauranty” and less “noddle-housy”. Lunch menus continue – from tuesday to friday you can get a special dish of the day with dessert & drink for 9.90 euros. A really good deal considering the quality of the food and service.

Still highly recommended. I think I’ll have the green curry next time.

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Wushu Wok/Restaurant/Bar is on c/ Colomines, 2, right behind the Mercat de Santa Caterina (Born). 933 107 313 . They are open Tue-Sat from 13:00 to 23:00.

Update: Wushu has moved to larger premises:

Avda. Marqués d’Argentera 1
08003 Barcelona
Metro: Barceloneta
Tel: 933 107 313

Lunch break

11:30 AM. I was working away at the archives (or trying to) when my cellphone buzzed. It was a text msg from Alan. The message was clear: “Wushu for lunch?” I knew I couldn’t really afford the time, that I should work overtime to compensate for the upcoming trip to Lisbon, but when it comes to food, I have no will-power. So Wushu it was.

Since it is mushroom season, the plato del dia was chicken with japanese mushrooms in a soy-based sauce served with jasmine rice. Dessert was a really nice passion fruit mousse served in a yogurt “soup” with biscuit. With a drink, it went for 9.90 euros.

Plato del dia

Wushu pictures

Christine, a friend from Montreal, was visiting last week and in between tourist sites, we took her to Wushu, our favourite restaurant. I also took the time to play with my new 50mm lens. Here are some of the pics:

Brad working away Curry Rojo con Gambas Plates Anise Pea

If you want to see larger version of these pictures, click on the first one on the left… Alternatively, you’ll find a slide show on the bottom. By the way, the dish is a Red Curry with Shrimp (Thailand). Yummm, sooo tasty

Alan’s birthday

Yesterday we celebrated Alan’s birthday at Wushu. We invited Joy and Jesús, whom we hadn’t seen in weeks, and went out for an early dinner (7:30 pm). Paula and Bradley were in fine form. The salmon tataki was made with salmon caught in the ocean rather than river salmon and although it lacked the bright salmon colour, it was a bit “gamier” than regular farmed salmon. I had curry rojo con gambas (Malaysia), Alan had curry curray (Japan) con ternera, Jesús had lo-men con gambas (China), and Joy had Laksa con gambas (Malaysia). We all tried each other’s food but my favourite was the curry rojo. I love the mix of chili with coconut milk. We enjoyed it all with two bottles of cava, the spanish champagne. Bradley then treated us to a two-course dessert: mango lassi followed by chocolate brownie served with vanilla ice cream & fried bananas.

Wushu continues to be a great deal. Amazing service, fresh & well-prepared meals, nice ambiance. We had two appetizers, four main courses with extra rice, two bottles of cava, coffees for 74 euros. Great meal.

Moleskine City Notebooks

Today I bought the Paris, Lisbon & Barcelona editions of the Moleskine City Notebooks. I first heard about them last year and had been eagerly waiting their release. They are basically the travel guidebook that you write yourself – you can see what I mean here. I have already started copying some of my Paris info into the new Moleskine and collecting Lisbon info for our trip in december. Can’t wait!!

Moleskine

After we bought the moleskines, we stopped at a few camera shops – Alan is researching which camera DSLR to buy – and I got myself a new lens for my film camera. It’s a 50mm 1.4f autofocus lens, a great lens  with which to learn photography and a rare find these days. I got it for a good price at Casanova on C/ Pelai, an amazing photo store.

Camera lens

We then proceeded to Wushu for another amazing meal and a nice chat with Paula and Bradley. We started with a salmon tataki and I then had their house pad thai (amazing glass noodles with sepia) and Alan had the yakisoba with ternera. We finished it off with some great brownies and chocolate ice cream. Life is good…