While St. Andrews has that small town charm, it can’t be helped that after a semester here the food options start to dwindle (I once had beThai 4 times in a week) and dreams of more exciting restaurants come to mind.
A group of 1st years seized the opportunity to create something fresh and exciting to capture the hearts (and stomachs) of the student population in St. Andrews; tapas.
Toro Tapas is the culinary baby of Joshua Foo, Felix Arris and Isidora Grgur. I had the opportunity to speak to the founders of Toro Tapas and talk a little about what to expect at their first pop-up event. It’s happening this Friday on the 15th of April, but more pop-ups will happen in the near future. This one will take place at Bibi’s cafe at 5 Ellice place.
Spoon: Who is involved and what is everyone’s role?
Toro Tapas: Felix, Isidora and Josh. The three of us are partners in Toro Tapas, a pop up restaurant in St. Andrews catered to students. Felix is the wits behind the project, offering his creative insight on many of the promotional matters. Isidora is the centre of the brain, linking food and gregarious ideas from Josh, with the bright sparks of genius from Felix. She handles all administrative tasks, which is paramount in effective communication.
Spoon: What about Spanish cuisine inspired you all to set up Toro Tapas?
Toro Tapas: Spanish cuisine has been part of Felix’s and Isidora’s lives for the longest time. The flamenco and rioja have proved to be a staple in their process of growing up. Josh, hailing from South East Asia, finally got a chance to explore Northern Spain for the first time last year. He’s fallen in love with the food (and probably the women, too).
Spoon: What can we expect on the menu?
Toro Tapas: Toro stands for “bull” in Spanish, but also symbolizes “tuna” in Japanese. The menu will intertwine the underlying cultures of the chef. Spain and Japan are Josh’s favorite culinary countries in the world, which is reflected in the menu’s use of ingredients, textures and flavours.
Spoon: Why did you decide on a Tapas style restaurant instead of a sit down restaurant?
Toro Tapas: Identifying a niche in the market in the university town, we found many students missing a space where they can pop in for a quick bite, relax to the vibes and chat over a glass of wine with their friends at an affordable price.
Spoon: Do you think more pop-up restaurants in St. Andrews will start appearing?
Toro Tapas: Opening restaurants are not easy in general. We certainly believe the trend will continue but as they always say – fastest fingers always comes first!
Spoon: What else can we look forward to from you guys?
Toro Tapas: By exposing ourselves to the food & beverage industry here, we will try to analyze the opportunities presented in front of us. We have plans to continue to grow the business through our passion for food. You should expect private dining, culinary tours, and demonstrations.
With the big event happening this Friday, keep checking in for a follow up review on how the whole event went and, more importantly, how the food tasted.