Just like a family we have our very own Ayla paella which the whole village can enjoy at our weekly Paella Thursday.
Every family has their own recipe, their own way of preparing and their own way of celebrating this ‘holy grail’ of Spanish traditional cooking. And so do we!
Everybody knows you don’t eat paella on a regular Monday. This dish requires attention, time, knowledge, experience and above all: love. Besides, picking out the best ingredients isn’t something to take lightly. On Thursdays, our chef Hette Hettema takes his time and creates our unique Ayla paella. Inspired by the best paella chefs of Valencia with his signature and special Ayla twist.
Hette: “No paella is ever the same and maybe that’s exactly the best aspect of it. Our version has its own character though and that’s a bit spicy; or full of character, as we call it.” Open as we are, we don’t make a secret of our paella. “Basically, it’s all about the gravy. First I make an exquisite shell fish gravy made of shore crabs, together with saffron (hence the yellow colour), star anise, garlic, vanilla, orange peel, cognac and white wine. The spicy touch comes from the smoked paprika powder, chili pepper and dried espelette pepper. Cooking the bomba rice in this gravy just makes our delicious Ayla paella irresistible.”
Of course the added fish is as fresh from the sea as possible. Thursday morning our delivery of the best gambas, mussels, octopuses, big and small squids and cuttlefish arrive and then Hette’s colourful party begins. “There is no recipe, I can only cook by touch.” And we promise you, his touch is never wrong.
It should come as no surprise that preparing the ‘holy grail’ of traditional Spanish cooking takes some time. To get the ultimate flavours and the best result that people have been craving for days, you need to curate the flavors. No rush in the Spanish family kitchen. That’s why our Paella Thursday is the only day in the week you can order the best paella in town and really taste the Mediterranean summer in Rotterdam.
When you tell us your group size and time of arrival, we will make sure your own steamy paella pan (serving 4-6 people) will be ready when you are. Before starting your Ayla paella experience, get in the Spanish mood with our delicious starters like pata negra and padrón peppers. And to complete your Paella Thursday let us serve you a perfectly cold Er Boquerón from the paella home province of Valencia. The beer is brewed with seawater, so this slightly salted flavour goes perfectly with the paella. Salud!
On special occasions, like the yearly opening of our terrace, the Rotterdam Marathon and our anniversaries, Hette really goes all the way with his paella. He brings out his enormous paellera and prepares a paella to feed the whole village. Keep an eye on our events page for the big paella parties.
OPEN 365 DAYS A YEAR
11.00 - 24.00
+31 (0)10 254 0005