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fruits and vegetables culinary tours The Unique Traveller

Take a culinary road trip through 
Spain

 

We can all agree that one of the best things about visiting Spain is getting the opportunity to indulge in delicious dishes and fine wines, either cooked up from fresh produce yourself or enjoyed in local restaurants and bars.

And with such a variety of traditional dishes and foods to enjoy ranging from gazpacho and paella to chorizo and tortilla, you can be sure never to grow bored of the gastronomy while enjoying holidays and weekend breaks in Spain.

But if you're a big foodie and feel like being adventurous with your tastes, why not take some time out to explore some of the roads less travelled in Spain to and sample delicious local cuisine on culinary tours away from the crowds of tourists?

Spanish food expert Maria Jose Sevilla describes her ideal culinary road trip as starting in Asturias before continuing north to Navarra to taste some of the best vegetables in the world

"I would then cross to Catalonia, from north to south, and progress south to Valencia where I would have some of the rice dishes, which are wonderful," she continues.

"Maybe go across to Madrid, where you can also try things like roasted dates and suckling pig. Carry on a little further west to Extremadura to have some of the most stunning Iberico ham, unique to Spain and delicious."

Although you may not have the time or energy (not to mention the stomach) to cover all these regions, planning a getaway to any of these destinations is sure to give you a great gastronomic experience.

And if you're keen to soak up as much culture and experience as many tastes and flavours as possible, it can be a good idea to take a look at a map and plan a mini culinary road trip, like Maria has done.

Be sure to include regions and towns known for your favourite dishes, but also be sure to try and squeeze in places that boast impressive architecture and throw fun fiestas for the ultimate Spanish getaway.

Spain boasts some of the best food and fine wine in the world


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the-wine-advocate Robert M Parker . The Unique Traveller

Rioja wines on top of the world

 

The prestigious American magazine Wine Advocate, the publication of Robert Parker, has chosen the Rioja wine Luis Canas Crianza 2009 as the best value for money wine in the world 2012.

This magazine, arguably the most influential in the world of wine, gives a big push to this unique family winery, which little by little has been conquering the markets and consumers by concentrating in quality and segmenting their vineyards and wines.

Luis Canas, owner of the winery, is very proud of achieving this reward  and recognise that is due to the continuous effort, passion for winemaking and to the way of life of his family during generations.

This is another winery awarded reinforcing once more the prestige of the wines in Rioja.

Furthermore, Wine Spectator, another American wine magazine has just announced the top 100 wines for 2012 and the first Spanish wine is a Rioja wine "Romero and Miller Reserva 2007" of Bodegas Renta de Fincas in Aldeanueva de Ebro (my home town).

Perhaps you might like to have a look to our itineraries in Rioja

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Tapas tour Spain The Unique TravellerFrom gazpacho in Andalucia and seafood paella on the Valencia coast to Crema Catalana served up for dessert in Barcelona - wherever you go in Spain you're sure to be spoilt for choice when it comes to cuisine.

But in terms of gastronomy, top of the list of Spanish foods for many visitors to the country has to be tapas - small morsels or appetisers, which can be enjoyed as a snack, starter or as a meal in themselves.

And where better to enjoy these culinary delights than in Spain's buzzing capital city?

Alongside its beautiful architecture, intriguing art galleries and exciting fiestas Madrid is known for its classic cuisine, making it an ideal destination for gourmet holidays in Spain.

Which is exactly what writer Sarah Maguire found when she embarked on a tapas tour of the capital, and discovered that gastronomy is the perfect way to get to know the city.

In an article on her experiences published in The Age, she wrote, "Spain is many things beyond its signature style of cuisine, and there has and will be much sightseeing during our five-day visit, but it is on a tapas crawl of Madrid that the insight into this sprawling, suntanned country, the land of the hanging jamon, feels at its most authentic."

Although Madrid has more than its fair share of world-class restaurants, Sarah focused on traditional tapas bars and restaurants that have been in the same family for generations.

For those of us who are planning on visiting Madrid this year, culinary tours that take you down hidden streets and into traditional bars to enjoy tapas are a great way to really get a true taste of this fascinating city.

Opt for tapas favourites such as jamon or tortilla de patata, and be sure to wash it down with one of the delicious local wines for the perfect complement to your meal or snack.


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