It’s been a shitty few months for me for various reasons, so when my bestie suggested a long weekend away to forget about life I jumped on that idea like a thoroughly inappropriate metaphor. On a recommendation we decided to go a bit off piste and booked flights to Santiago de Compostela, in Spain. We were reliably informed that the food and wine from Galicia were absolutely babe, and when we discovered that hotel and flights would cost well under £200 each we went all ‘booked it/packed it/fucked off’ and sorted out the whole thing in about two weeks flat.
This is a bit of a whistlestop tour of the various things we tried in the various places we visited and A BIG FAT SHOUTOUT AND HUG to all the lovely people in the area who helped us, fed us, watered us and walked us to our hotel when we got lost (srsly though; favourite person ever, we would – literally – have been lost without you). I mean, they won’t be able to understand it or anything, because no-one spoke English, but I like to think they’ll get warm and fuzzy vibes.
So anyway, Galicia. Renowned apparently for seafood and alboriño white wine. Also renowned (now, by us) for purveying a damn fine jamón ibérico and Rioja I would happily walk over hot coals to get down my neck again.
On the first night, after a distinctly hairy drive from the airport which may or may not have involved a minor car accident (sorry Angry Spaniard), we walked to Pontevedra’s old town to hit up some tapas. Because tapas. Obviously. We decided on a place called La Chiruca based on absolutely nothing, but happily tucked into some of the best langostinos (king prawns) in the WORLD. They were ‘a la plancha’, which I understand means ‘off the grill’, but… well. I don’t know what they put on their grills out there but these were the tastiest, smokiest, juiciest prawns I’ve ever had the good fortune to eat. NOM. Also delicious was the calamari, which was practically melt in the mouth it was so tender. A bottle of the house red (which cost TWELVE EURO ARGH STOPIT SPAIN YOU’RE TOO GOOD) and a tortilla with the runniest middle *swoon* I’ve ever seen and we were very happy travellers.
Prawns and tortilla were our staple diet for the weekend, and we tried as many of both as you can reasonably fit into three days. Some would say we ate slightly too many, and I’m not in a position to confirm or deny rumours that there’s a prawn shortage at the mo, HOWEVER I can tell you that both the prawns and the tortilla on offer at this restaurant were far and away the best we had. Huge thumbs up.
The next day, because we hadn’t learned our lesson re: driving and near death experiences at all, we took Pinky (of course we named our hire car) exploring.
^ what a beaut. Lizzy’s not too bad either LOVE YOU
After certainly not driving on the wrong side of the road *grits teeth* we reached Combarro, which was just down the coast from where we were staying and scored about 11/10 on the ‘quaint-o-meter’ we devised for the trip.
^ That, my friends, is ‘A-Game’ Quaint.
There we stopped for tapas (because tapas) at Leucoíña, which was a little restaurant right on the seafront. Here we tried ‘Galician scallops’ (otherwise known as razor clams), zamburiñas (otherwise known as ‘little actual scallops’), tetilla and chorizo.
Razor clams were… erm… interesting. I’m glad we tried them, and they were cooked in garlic and lemon and all sorts of other excellent things, but they were a liiiiiiiittle too squishy and just, well, phallic for me. Still ate them and everything, but wouldn’t have them again. The scallops on the other hand were to DIE for, barely – just barely! – cooked in garlic and oil and drizzled with lemon they were so, so delicate and delicious.
Tetilla is a Galician cheese which is wonderfully creamy and went really well with a piece of spicy fried chorizo and a hunk of bread – this all came before the seafood but we saved it until afterwards, which was the right thing to do I think.
We liked Leucoíña so much we went back the next day for more scallops and prawns, which were lovely but dinky which meant you that once you’d butchered them yourself it was an awful lot of work for not much reward tbh.
Sanxenxo was just up the coast from Combarro but scored very low on the quaint-o-meter (barely 3/10) and also didn’t have any restaurants we wanted to eat at, which was quite the achievement. I’d give this a miss, though the beaches were nice, I suppose.
Stand out tapas (because tapas) back in Pontevedra for dinner at Badiana Tapas was the ibérico pork tataki. Basically raw iberico pork. Don’t care how wrong it sounds, it was so, SO, SO, RIGHT. Like eating the best raw fillet steak, but piggy. Badiana Tapas was a restaurant on the main quaint square (8/10 at least) in Pontevedra and is definitely worth a visit for all sorts of reasons, the quaint factor and the tataki being just a couple. But not the octopus, definitely give that a miss *shudder*
^ Get. In. My. Face.
Phew. I’m only halfway through the weekend, this post is getting longer than I anticipated. Just going to go and have a break and a reminisce now and finish off another time.