Happy Christmas and New Year from El Gato Negro Tapas

We’re open as usual until Monday 24th December (we’re also open on Sunday 23rd December). El Gato Negro Tapas will be closed for business from the evening of Christmas Eve for a well-deserved festive break. We reopen on Thursday 10th January 2013, refreshed and ready for the new year, and look forward to welcoming customers old and new through our doors again.

Here’s a sneak peek of the new menu we’re about to roll out, for late autumn/winter. As usual we’ve taken onboard feedback from our customers, and we’re pleased to let you know we’ve incorporated some of your favourites from the specials board onto the new menu: including the chargrilled onglet steak with patatas a lo pobre, and the always-popular tiger prawns with chilli, lemon, garlic and paprika.

We’ll publish the full menu here next week, and add some fantastic new dishes to our specials board as well. November will also see our long-anticipated new drinks list in place… with new menu, specials and drinks we have everything you need to keep you warm and content during the winter months!

Sunday Times Food List article featuring El Gato Negro

We’re excited to have been featured in the Sunday Times’ Food List today, as part of their Cheap(ish) Eats guide. They love our famed morcilla scotch eggs, and the review via Hardens calls us “the best tapas in the north”. We’re very pleased, but thanks go to our whole team here at El Gato Negro, as well as all our loyal customers, old and new, who speak so highly of us.

“Shaw’s “excellent” converted pub is “a joy”. 

It’s an extra pleasure to have a photograph of our selection of Spanish Meats (Salchichon, Lomo, Fuet de Vic, Serrano Ham, Chorizo Magno, Chorizo Artisan Leon) at the top of the page for Yorkshire and the North East, accompanied by the headline “Cure perfection”. Looks delicious!

El Gato Negro's famed morcilla scotch eggs

A selection of the Gonzalez Byass sherries in EL Gato Negro

Simon’s just returned from a brief but informative trip to Jerez thisweek, visiting the soleras and cellars of González Byass and learning much more about the history and quality of their sherries. As one of the most distinguished and renowned sherry wineries, he had a lot to learn from them! We’ve stocked many of their lines for some time, both as popular regulars and limited edition specials; and we’re very excited to be introducing some of their less-widely availably wines, as perfect companions to many of our superb Spanish-influenced dishes.

Earlier this year we held a wildly successful sherry tasting evening, and received great feedback from the guests who joined us to learn more about the wines. Encouraged by the recent upsurge in interest in quality sherries in the UK, and with greater interest than ever from our customers, we’ve decided to expand the range of sherries we stock, and provide an online guide to customers and viewers to give greater insight into the breadth and variety of these characteristic wines. Believe us when we say these are a million miles from the sweet cream varieties which many people still associate with the word ‘sherry’…

We’ll shortly be launching a new section of the website, dedicated to these delicious, distinctive and elegant wines; and have another event in the works to complement the new online feature. Keep your eyes peeled and glasses at the ready for more news and a special feature on our website soon… and in the meantime, please ask our staff for recommendations while you’re dining in the restaurant. Incidentally, the current special is this superb limited edition Tio Pepe Fino En Rama, which is definitely one of our all-time favourites… highly recommended!

A limited edition Tio Pepe Fino En Rama in El Gato Negro




The Cooking School at Dean Clough, Halifax, Simon Shaw, cookery classes, tapas

We’re delighted El Gato Negro has been asked to conduct a duo of cooking classes by The Cooking School at Dean Clough in Halifax, as part of their excellent Wednesday Night for Chefs series.

Chef/proprietor Simon Shaw will be leading two evening classes in March 2013 – revealing some of his favourite techniques, tips and knowledge – and demonstrating the attendees how to create some of his stunning tapas dishes with his customary flair and panache. There are limited places, so please be sure to sign up quickly as we expect both evenings to be filled quickly.

Full details on the course can be found here.

[Update: both evenings have now sold out. However you can still register your interest for future classes, or for a waiting list in case any spaces become available. Thanks for the unbelievable demand; we’re very excited to be conducting these classes and sharing some of our secrets with fans of our Spanish food. ]

Chef Simon Shaw, El Gato Negro, Spanish cuisine, F Word winner

The restaurant will be closed for one day, on Wednesday 12th September, for a private function. We will reopen to the public as usual on Thursday. Thank you.

Ever wondered how hard we work to bring great food from the kitchen to the table? Well, here’s a short timelapse video which shows the team working in our rather delicately proportioned kitchen…

You can see we’re a precision team, where everyone knows their station and everything goes out from the pass looking just perfect. In a small kitchen, teamwork, timing and attention to detail is everything… and we think that comes through in this timelapse.

There’s about five hours of footage squeezed into less than a minute, so hang on tight and enjoy watching this short video. A quick tip though… it definitely looks best in fullscreen mode!

El Gato Negro mosaic and bowls

The restaurant is closed for the next two weeks for our annual break. It’s that time where we get to experiment full-time in the kitchen; give everything an extra polish and clean; meet our suppliers; go on buying trips, and put the finishing touches to our new wine list.

We’re also rolling out the new website, as well as getting onto Facebook and Twitter. So while we’re closed to the public for two weeks, we’ll be working away behind closed doors… and perhaps sharing a few secrets in the meantime!

Screen preview of EGN's new 2012 website

We’ve launched our new website! Our old site has served us admirably for the last few years, but we know we need to keep fresh and relevant online as well as on the plate!

So we’ve teamed up with our friends at Anti Limited, and they’ve created a slick, stylish new look which reflects the restaurant and our menus. Lots of gorgeous photography, as well as clever and useful features galore: from up-to-date menus and contact forms, through to 360° panoramic views of the interior.

Now we have a bright, shiny and useful new site, designed to work just as well on smartphones and tablets as much as desktop computers. We aim to regularly update the news, and provide special online-only offers too. We’ve also got a presence on Facebook and Twitter too… so please like and follow us for all the latest from the black cat!

We were proud winners of Gordon Ramsey’s F Word Best Local Spanish Restaurant in 2009/10. After being shortlisted for the Channel 4 show, Gordon and his team turned up to film us at our Ripponden restaurant. Simon and sous chef Matt then headed down to London to battle it out in the studio. It was a tight run thing, but the boys brought the coveted award back home to Yorkshire in the end!