Octopus is a tricky fish to tin. We've never sold it and it's not from lack of trying. I've probably tasted octopus from twenty different companies. Those fish suffered a range of maladies: overly gelatinous, too cat-foody, or they had what I like to call "rubber hose phenomenon."
I came to Ramón Peña's octopus with low expectations born from experience. What I tasted was a treat, a surprise that ranks at the top of my new food list this season. Peña's round tin holds over a dozen slices of tentacle, suckers intact. Octopus is never a melt-in-your-mouth food and these are appropriately meaty, with a satisfying ticky-tacky bite that never veers toward garden hose. They also sport a scent of sea so clear it's disarming.
A tin serves 4 as an appetizer. And since one of those 4 people probably doesn't eat octopus that means there's more for you.