Undersize me

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If you ask Anthony McErlain, one good bar deserves another. McErlain is the proprietor of two establishments on Park Slope’s Fifth Avenue: the two-year-old Black Sheep Pub, which, he said, serves “typical bar food” and the tonier Cafe Tapeo, an altogether different animal that opened in August.

“I’ve done a lot of traveling,” McErlain told GO Brooklyn. “I like the way they dine in Spain and Europe where groups share lots of small plates. It’s a very social, laid-back experience.”

Setting out to emulate the overseas model, he crafted a 40-seat room that resembles a country farmhouse.

“I wanted everything to look old,” he said, so the walls are covered with layers of plaster, not paint, and the bar is fashioned from reclaimed 150-year-old wood. Come spring, he’ll offer sidewalk seating on Bergen Street.

To accompany the global wine selection ($7–$9 a glass) and 20-plus beer varieties, Chef Corey Lewis devised a menu of small plate, Spanish-style tapas. With “New World pierogis” (pictured), dumplings filled with farmer cheese and accompanied by triple sec-scented onion and fruit compote, and “devilish eggs,” stuffed with shrimp salad and crowned with “tobiko” (flying fish roe), in the roundup, it’s safe to say the borders of Lewis’s Spain are rather broad.

Cafe Tapeo (52 Fifth Ave. at Bergen Street in Park Slope) accepts American Express, MasterCard and Visa. Small plates: $4-$12. Wine by the glass: $7-$9. The bar is open for dinner from 5 pm until 2 am on weeknights and until 4 am on weekends. Subway: B, Q, 2, 3, 4 and 5 to Atlantic Avenue. For more information, call (718) 638-1066 or visit the Web site

Updated 4:01 pm, November 10, 2010
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