Ignacio Perez-Barreiro, who was instrumental in establishing the successful La Tasca concept, has opened Tinto restaurant in Didsbury with his wife, Natalia Esquerdo-Girbes, creating 12 new jobs.
The 90-cover Spanish restaurant, which was formerly the Chalk and Grill, had been closed for six months before it was bought by the husband and wife team with help from SME funder, Reward Finance.
Ignacio, who is better known as Nacho, trained and qualified as a chef in Spain before moving to the UK 25 years ago. As executive chef at La Tasca’s first outlet on Deansgate, he helped establish the concept and roll-out the brand across the UK and US.
In 2001, Nacho and Natalia established Lola Espana as a wholesaler of Spanish food, table and kitchenware to the many Spanish restaurants around the UK.
In May last year they jointly launched Tapeo & Wine on Deansgate. However deciding they wanted to run their own restaurant they sold their shares in December to the other shareholder, Juan Mata Snr, father of the Manchester United footballer.
The new restaurant will be supplied by Lola Espana and the authentic Spanish menu will concentrate on its charcoal oven which is central to the restaurant kitchen. Nacho will roast and grill Spanish specialities, from Menorcan milk-fed lamb shoulder, 45 days aged Galician Blonde beef steaks “Chuleton”, through to whole wild turbot, delicate seabass and even finish the paellas on its open fire.
In addition there will be cured meats and cheeses with wine imported directly from small family run vineyards in Spain.
Tinto’s ambition is to move beyond the topical tapas dishes prevalent in many of the Spanish restaurants in the UK and recreate the authentic Spanish family dining experience. Ingredients are carefully sourced and everything is made in-house on the spot, in an artisan way. This will be part of the charm and extends to cover Nacho and Natalia’s ethos, which is all about authenticity and a quest to bring back traditional cooking.
Speaking about the new restaurant, Natalia said,
“As we live in the area we spotted the Chalk and Grill had closed and believed it was the perfect place to open our own restaurant. It is a great location in the heart of Didsbury village, which has an excellent community and family feel.
“We believe Spanish food, cooked in a simple and authentic way to bring out the high quality ingredients, will be a big attraction in the area.
“We would like to thank the team at Reward Finance for having the confidence in us to enable us to buy the restaurant and create such an authentic feel to the interior.”
Commenting on the new venture, Paula Jones of Reward Finance, said,
“Natalia and Nacho are a formidable team who are extremely passionate about the business. In addition there are not many chefs with the track record of Nacho for creating successful concepts.
“With such drive, experience and ambition we are confident Tinto will be a huge success.”