Friday night took us to Andalusia – the perfect place to stop (26 North Hanover Street, Carlisle PA) for a bite to eat after work while on our way to another event.

Andalusia is exactly as the name says – Andalusian, that special part of Southern Spain that is known for their tapas, unique olive oil, wine and Flamenco. Everything on the menu is served just as you would get in Southern Spain -  tapas style – your server will help explain all the delicious choices and also help you order just the right amount of food, depending on your appetite.

For two of us, we ordered the spinach salad, the chicken kabob, the small chicken paella and just one cheese – the manchego. If I had to do it again, I would have ordered additional cheese options – the manchego was delightful and I would have liked to have a few more bites of cheese, sweet quince and toasts. We shared everything, and we were pretty full – so, we skipped dessert. The menu has lots of great Spanish wine choices. And yes, your server will help you pair the wine to the tapas that you have ordered. From past visits, I can tell you the sangrias are the best I’ve had. Especially on a hot summer day, there is nothing better than Andalusia’s sangrias – they are a perfect paring of fresh fruit and wine. And did I tell you, that happy hour is from 5 – 7? 

Your food comes up quickly and in the order that tapas should be served – salad was up first, followed by the cheese, then the kabob and then the piping hot paella. The flavors are fresh and will delight your senses. If you are comfortable with the same-old, same-old and you are afraid to try something deliciously new and authentic – then, move on to your drive through routine. If you are willing to be surprised by new tastes and a new way of eating – tapas style – then Andalusia is the place. Do what others do in exotic parts of the world – you sit with friends and talk (remember that?), you sip your favorite beverage, you sample your favorite flavors – all over the course of several hours or the entire evening. You can do that with tapas. There’s no clock telling you it’s time to move on, because the table needs to be turned. At Andalusia, turning the table is akin to ordering another tapa. Just keep those tapas coming and before long you will be energized by having ditched the “same-old, same-old”.