San Sebastian - Pintxos Pintxos Pintxos
Nov 13, 2011
|5 Wonderful nights in San Sebastian. Again we booked an apartment for this extended stay which proved to be a stroke of genius - it had a washing machine !!!!! What it didn't have was a kettle or a toaster - a little oversight that was easily fixed.
The apartment gave us the opportunity to go to the supermarket and buy some cereal, milk, bread, yoghurt, tea and coffee - normal breakfasts. It also meant we could sleep in and not have the 1030 breakfast deadline - how are we ever going to go back to work??we dont rise til midday....we dont eat dinner til 2130 and we dont sleep until the early hours of the morning....just like the Spanish......a great lifestyle
San Sabastian is a seaside town/city with 2 great beaches about 500m apart - 1 for surfing and the other for swimming. The views were fabulous and the weather did not disappoint. We took daily walks along the coast exploring different parts of the town each time. This was certainly a place we could get used to.
The gastronomical wonder that is the Old Town or Pintxos Town as Cam has named it was a daily stop. Instead of trying to describe it, simply google "Pintxos" and select "Images" and it should give you some idea of what we were experiencing. The old town of San Sebastian has this mass concentration of little Tabernas (Taverns) where you can eat Pintxos off the bar for €2 - €4 each and get a glass of wine for about €2. Our routine between 1pm & 4pm became the following:
Step 1. Walk in to a bar and eye off the pintxos, if you like what you see, continue to step 2. If not, walk out and go to the next bar and repeat step 1.
Step 2. Order "Mejor Vino Tinto - Dos" (best red wine x 2).
Step 3. Grab a plate and start choosing your Pinxtos. When you've had a couple of Pintxos pay the bill and go to another bar and repeat step 1.
We would head back to our little apartment for a rest at about 5pm and then go through it all again between 8pm and 11pm.
We loved it and we tried some amazing dishes and got a little adventurous. We tried Sea Urchin, Veal Cheek, Quail and even Frogs Legs ( not Sim...I could not do it!). But our favourite was Solomillo (pronounced So-Lo-Mi-Yo) which is little Eye Fillet, sometimes served on a small piece of toast, sometimes on a plate topped with Foie Gras, sometimes topped with a little fried Quail Egg.
On our final afternoon/evening we managed 8 different pintxos bars. Per person that's about 16 - 20 pintxos and about 8 - 12 glasses of wine. Needless to say our waistlines have expanded a bit but oh well...we are on holiday.
Whilst we are on our favorite topic...food...we must tell you about our experience at the Mugaritz the 2 Michelin star restuarant that we booked as a special treat for our 7th year wedding anniversary. Now I will be the first to tell you that my Spanish is bad. This is mostly due to the fact that I cant roll my rrrr'sss, however, I did not think that this would cause such a problem. The taxi arrives, we get in and I politely ask the driver to take us to Mugaritz (Mug ar ritz - mug as in coffee), he had no idea where we wanted to go and then after about 5 minutes realised, laughed and then gave me pronaunciation lessons all the way to the restuarant - about a 20 minute drive......Cam thought this was hilarious so if you ever go it is Mooooooogaaaritz!!!!!!!!
This was a fabulous experience..20 courses and a focus on food not being what it seems. It was almost as if they modelled food to look like something entirely different to what it actually was...the waiters had a bit of fun with us and we had to guess what we were actually eating..it was great. We have many photos to share with you when we return.
Our next day was spent recovering and getting ready for the evening which once again was a gastronomic experience - are you getting the theme...most people travel and recall all of the famous sites, museums etc... we have done that...but our focus has been on the gastronomica experiences of all of the wonderful countries we have visited. We have re-named our trip...Cam and Sim's gastronomic tour of Morocco, Portugal and Spain...
San Sebastian, by far our most enjoyable stop to date.