Monday, June 30, 2014

100 Montaditos: Fast Food from Spain

As fans of fast food, it's always exciting to discover a new fast food joint that is uniquely different from the usual American offerings. 100 Montaditos started in Spain back in 2000 with a menu that focuses on the traditional montadito: small rolls (like mini 4 inch baguettes) that are filled with a variety of Spanish ingredients. What's so cool about the menu is that they really do offer 100 different sandwiches to choose from, as well as other tasty Spanish food and drink.

There are a good handful of 100 Montaditos locations on the East Coast of the USA, most of them being in Florida. The New York City location is at 176 Bleecker Street in Manhattan. We recently went for lunch on 2 different days so that we could try as many menu items as we could. Both lunches were stupendous overall and we loved that you can order typical Spanish adult beverages like sangría and Mahou beer to go along with your meal. Oh, and they unexpectedly serve Pepsi products as well. Here is what we tried!

1. Croquetas: This is Snaxtime's favorite Spanish tapa and it is very difficult to find well made traditional Spanish croquetas outside of Spain. The croquetas at 100 Montaditos are solid and reminiscent of the ham croquettes we used to eat in Spain. They are made with creamy béchamel and small pieces of serrano ham and then coated with breadcrumbs and fried. These were served with a smoky alioli (mayo made with olive oil and lots of garlic) and were crispy, hot and silky smooth on the inside. We loved them!

2. Montadito #23: Tuna, piquillo pepper (roasted sweet red pepper), crispy onion and alioli. This was our favorite Montadito! The tuna tasted amazing with this combination of ingredients and the flavors are undeniably Spanish.

3. Montadito #8: Tortilla española (thick Spanish omelette made with eggs and potatoes), manchego cheese (mild and nutty Spanish cheese made from sheep's milk), and piparra (mild pickled Spanish green pepper). We added alioli to this montadito. We enjoyed the tortilla with the manchego but we ended up picking off the piparra peppers because we thought they overpowered the delicate flavor of the eggs and potato omelette. Next time, we may just get #6, which is just the tortilla española with alioli.

4. Montadito #10: Meatballs, crispy onions and marinara sauce. Believe it or not, meatballs, or albondigas, are a very typical Spanish tapa. This montadito tasted just like it sounds, delicious!

5. Bravas Potatoes: Patatas Bravas (spicy Spanish-style potatoes) are usually prepared by cutting the potatoes into large chunks, frying them and coating them generously with paprika. These were more like steak fries with a paprika dipping sauce. Not our favorite menu item and probably wouldn't order them again. The fries they offer are way better.

6. Montadito #42: Chicken, crispy onion and alioli. We wanted to try the chicken, which tasted moist and like, well, chicken! Nothing to write home about, the crispy onion and alioli are the stars of this sandwich.

7. Montadito #55: Garlic pork loin, piquillo pepper and mayo. We adored this one! The pork was garlicky and tender and the sweet red pepper and tangy mayo really brought it all together.

8. Montadito #78: Anchovies, fresh tomato, hard boiled egg and mayo. This one is a real winner if you like the fishy taste of Anchovies. The hard boiled egg, mayo and cool tomato help balance the strong flavor of the salty fish. yum!

9.  Olives from Spain: tasted like olives!

10. Montadito #62: Chistorra (basque style chorizo sausage), cream cheese and crispy onion. Sooo good! Like a spicy lil hotdog with creamy cheese and sweet fried onion. Try it!

11. Fries w/ 2 Sauces (alioli and housemade ketchup): way better than the Bravas Potatoes. The fries were thin and battered and tasted wonderful with the sauces.

12. Montadito #56: Chorizo and manchego cheese: So simple and yet one of the best montaditos we tried! The thinly sliced Spanish sausage accompanied the nutty cheese brilliantly.

13. Montadito #99: Whipped cream with Oreo cookies on chocolate montadito bread. This is where 100 Montaditos gets the most creative with their amusing selection of dessert sandwiches on chocolate bread. The bread tasted so fresh and soft on the inside. The whipped cream was sturdy, creamy and sweet and the Oreo added a nice crunch and additional chocolate flavor. This was the perfect way to end our lunchtime adventure!

We hope you enjoyed the rundown. If you ever have the pleasure of running into a 100 Montaditos, make sure you pop in and try it out!

Check out a PDF of the full NYC menu here!
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