BROMA’s Spanish-Portuguese menu takes guests on a culinary exploration through the Iberian Peninsula.
After a consistent, 8-year, Michelin-star run at Mountain View’s Chez TJ, chef Jarad Gallagher felt inspired to explore a different menu format. That exploration led to his opening of BROMA, also in Mountain View and located within the Shashi Hotel. The casual yet refined, Spanish-Portuguese-focused Mediterranean restaurant takes guests on a culinary exploration through the Iberian Peninsula with the “Broma Experience,” a three course chef’s tasting menu of everything the kitchen is inspired to make at any particular moment, based on what is readily available from the farmer’s market that morning. Priced at $120 per person, the extraordinary, hyper-seasonal offering can be enhanced with a $60 wine pairing of fabulous, under-the-radar labels.
“My heart is in Spain, my soul is in Portugal, and the incredible food in that region of the world continues to motivate me to cook.” Jarad Gallagher
Gallagher is the force behind BROMA’s culinary inspiration and creative direction. He leads the culinary team in collaboration with executive chef Aubree Arndt; Justin Rodriguez leads the beverage program and overall restaurant operations. Previous partners at Chez TJ, Gallagher and Rodriguez sought to create a restaurant concept not readily found in the Peninsula: a place that offers an elevated tasting menu experience at an accessible price within a scaled-down time frame.
Drawn his entire life to Spain and Portugal, Gallagher infuses BROMA with the spirit of the region he so admires. “When I first traveled through Spain and Portugal, I was in awe of their rich and vibrant cultures,” said Gallagher. “They have a connection to their past that they won’t let the modern world remove from them. They celebrate life over large, shareable meals. There is a deep, sincere passion for their ingredients. I instantly felt inspired by the bold, hearty cuisine and the passion for artistry. My heart is in Spain, my soul is in Portugal, and the incredible food in that region of the world continues to motivate me to cook.”
Diners can expect bold flavors and diverse ingredients at BROMA. Rotating daily, the unique Broma Experience is an expression of chefs Gallagher and Arndt’s collaborative ingenuity. Highlights include croquetas de pollo e Manchego with curtido, guajillo chile, and jamón Ibérico; hamachi crudo with plum, bay leaf, kumquat, and avocado; Spanish octopus with corn, tomato, and chili glaze; Alentejo pork cheek and clams with kimchi, potato, and spinach; and Flannery Beef’s dry-aged New York steak with ramps, potato, and fava beans. Items can also be selected via the à la carte menu that features an approachable array of starters, entrées, and desserts such as Crema Catalana with mixed local fruits, and Valrhona Manjari mousse with chili sponge cake, pecans, and sea salt.
The beverage program features playfully curated cocktails based on fresh, seasonal ingredients and house-made bitters and mixers, putting creative spins on mezcal, tequila, and gin-based cocktails made with inventive bitters, fresh fruit mixers, and Spanish ingredients like olive oil and sherry. Highlights include a bespoke gin and tonic with St. George Botanivore, cinchona bark syrup, yuzu, elder flower tincture, and Fever Tree Indian tonic; a classic paloma with blanco tequila “milk punch,” grapefruit, soda, and ginger; a coffee martini with Wheatley vodka with cocoa nib, St. George NOLA coffee liqueur, California sherry, orgeat, and cold brew; and a house Old Fashioned with Woodford Reserve bourbon, house-made orange bitters, and charred cherry wood. Zero-proof house made sodas include blood orange, grapefruit, and ginger-lime.
With complete control over interior aspects, Gallagher and his team designed the 13,000-square-foot space with intention. Featuring private rooms, two patios, and imported artwork, the vibe is big, bold, fun, and vibrant. “When people dine at BROMA, I want them to feel transported and inspired, without the unnecessary formality of fine dining,” said Gallagher, who added that broma in Spanish means joke. “At BROMA we make serious food, but the name is a reminder to my employees not to take themselves too seriously.”