Dinner plucked from the air

We ate at Pulpo Negro again tonight and it was simply perfect. There were a lot more diners (which is good) and the food was exceptional. In particular there was a new dish which I’d seen on Instagram.

I’d been going on about it all week to a slightly annoyed Mirinda. Annoyed because I wasn’t going to share. It’s called huevos rotos (broken eggs) and is, quite simply, brilliant.

Words are really inadequate to describe this little piece of tummy delight. An egg on top of the tiniest chips known to man on top of pulled pork. That sounds a bit dull but, by the gods it isn’t. It was glorious.

They are constantly changing the menu so we have to return before this is removed. I don’t think my life will really be worth much if I don’t have this again.

Obviously the rest of the meal was excellent as we’ve come to expect from them. And the service. I really like the friendly staff, in particular the Spanish waitress who remembered us.

It was also lovely to see so many people out and about in Alresford. It almost felt natural. Well, apart from the taxi driver waiting outside his cab with a face mask on. Or the woman waiting outside Pizza Express with a mask in her hand. Or the couple sitting behind us who kept drenching themselves in hand sanitiser.

But, apart from those, it felt almost normal.

Well, except for the fact that we managed to get a booking which, in normal times, was not always possible given their much deserved popularity.

Something else I’d like to say about Pulpo Negro is at least all the food is dead. This was certainly not the case earlier in the day.

I was sitting at the table on the terrace, reading. Mirinda and Emma were down under the magnolia on a work call and Freya was somewhere inside. I heard a noise to my left. I looked over. A peregrine falcon was standing by the hippo bath, a small bird under its talons, pinned to the tiles and trying to wiggle free.

I very slowly reached for my phone, to take a photo. The peregrine turned its head and looked straight at me. There was some sort of strange connection then, just as I reached my phone, it flew off. Like a bullet. (The bird, not my phone.)

It was a particularly vicious display of ‘nature, red in tooth and claw’ but, as Mirinda said later, while it was a bit hard on the small bird, the falcon would have enjoyed a meal.

Just like we did, later and with a lot less wiggling.

Above is how Mirinda looks when her glass is inexplicably empty.

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