LA TEXTIL: GREAT SPOT TO ENJOY ELEVATED FOOD, AWARD-WINNING CRAFT BEER, AND LIVE MUSIC
If you’re looking for a place to enjoy affordable, unpretentious Michelin-quality food, craft beer, and live music, look no further than La Textil Collective.
Located at C/ Casp 33B, La Textil boasts enough space— 1,100 m2 to be exact —and ambition to offer customers a craft-beer bar, restaurant, café (with Nomad coffee and pastries), live music venue, and a brewery, which has the capacity to produce 120,000 liters of beer per year. Impressively, it does a good job of making each of these separate areas cohesive.
When you first walk in, you are greeted by the microbrewery’s bar area. Here is where you’ll find their seventeen craft beers, several of which are award-winning, on tap (and come directly from the brewery’s beer fermentation tanks), as well guest beers and homemade soft drinks and their gourmet dishes to accompany them.
Continue along the cavernous space towards the back and you’ll find a set of stairs, alongside which sits the DJ’s area, that lead down to the space’s live music venue, which features local bands and DJs, mostly on weekends, although this part of the business is run separately and has a separate entrance.
If you bypass the stairs and continue through two sets of curtains, you’ll arrive at the show-kitchen restaurant that features exposed brick walls, a wall-to-wall glass window in the back through which you can see the brewery, and a kitchen floating like a giant island in the middle around which people can sit and watch chef Pablo LaGrange, sous chef Lucía Aguilar, and company, work their quiet magic as they carefully cook and prepare their elevated-yet-rooted dishes; all ingredients used are local and seasonal.
This area is where, as owner and master brewer Brian Blazek puts it, you’re “going to be taken on a journey.” That journey has its roots in fire, fermentation, and sustainability. All food is cooked over fire, or to some degree has been “touched” by it, and, going through the menu, the temperature heats up from the sea to the vegetable garden and on to the mountains. As for fermentation, eggplants are burned and then boiled to create “burnt water” to use as a sauce, the cereals for making craft beer are used for smoking as well as burned and boiled for making sauces, the fat trimmings from the brisket to make the in-house bread, etc.; the list could go on and on. The philosophy at La Textil Restaurant is to make every plate from scratch and not let anything go to waste.
For a space that is so grand and open, it is able to feel cozy and quaint thanks to carefully chosen elements of the space’s decoration and design. Beautiful wood used from a Girona cypress tree that had been struck by lightning is featured throughout the entire space— the bar, the countertops, the kitchen, some of the seating, the cutting boards and serving platters, etc. —and serves as a reminder of the place’s connection to nature. Add to that the lighting, dim and intimate, the exposed-brick walls, imperfect and intriguing, and then the warmth and joy that the staff emits to the customer and you’ve got a place you feel at home and at ease in. It is through this aesthetic and atmosphere that the elegant dishes that arrive before you don’t make you feel as if you’ve under-dressed for the occasion.
It also helps to have someone like Blazek, a former literature professor who’s as laidback as they come, walk you through the space, the menu, the literature-or-pop-culture-inspired beer names (“The Democracy of The Dead,” “Circumference of Darkness,” and “Drinkin’ not Thinkin’,” to name a few), make you feel welcome and simply share his excitement and passion for what La Textil Collective is all about: a unique experience that encourages you to disconnect, sit back and enjoy.
“I love to please,” Blazek confided. “A lot of love and passion went [and still goes] into this.”
That passion and intent gets across with each sip and bite.
By EMILY BENSON
Photos by ISABEL TROYA