Perfect Paella

Lamoraga Excels at Spain’s National Dish

Even before retiring with a Super Bowl ring in 2005, former St. Louis Rams guard Tom Nutten was passionate about food and wine. “I’ve always been a self-proclaimed foodie,” he admits. “I enjoyed experimenting at home on family and friends, and I always felt there was a better meal just around the corner.”

Nutten fell in love with Spanish cuisine during a visit in 2013 and opened his eatery, Lamoraga, a year later. Inspired by a restaurant in the southern region of Andalusia, the Naples Lamoraga serves a menu of classic items such as octopus, garlic shrimp, Catalan seafood stew, and Paleta Iberico Bellota ham.

While paella (pictured) is the best-selling dish, Nutten is partial to the Piri-Piri swordfish. Chunks of fish are marinated in a sauce of mild capsicums, olive oil, and spices, then skewered with onions and red bell pepper, and served over soft polenta and sautéed arugula.

The wine list is short but well-chosen, with a strong Spanish component and an emphasis on noncommercial labels. “What I like about our place is that no matter what mood I’m in, I can always find something to eat or drink,” Nutten says. “Our atmosphere is casual and energetic, a perfect place to share dishes and bottles with friends.” 

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