DINE YOUR WAY THROUGH SPAIN PROGRAMS
The Great Cuisine of Galicia
Although Galicia has long been a favorite of European gourmands, it has yet to be discovered by gastronomy aficionados from this side of the Atlantic.
One reason is that off the rugged Galician coast, are some of the best fishing waters in the world. With over two hundred varieties of fish and 54 kinds of shellfish alone. Like Mariscos a la Plancha (shellfish simmered in olive oil, garlic and paprika) or Fideos con Pulpo (grilled octopus over pasta).
Another reason the full flavored fruits and vegetables that its rich soil provides: extra-large turnips, peppers, maize, tomatoes and mushrooms so large and luscious they’re often served as a main dish. Their unique cheeses and grass-fed meats are also known throughout Spain. Be sure to try Capon, Grandma-style (slow roasted duck in cognac) served with Grelos Gallegos (turnip greens simmered in olive oil, garlic and pimentòn).
Still another reason is the array of delectable white wines Albariños. Along its five rivers, you’ll find some of the finest vineyards in Spain. The Miño River, which flows through beautiful steep valleys, to the renowned vineyards of Ribadavia, home of the famous Ribeiro whites. The picturesque Sil, which meanders past stately chestnuts and oaks to the vineyards of Ribeira Sacra, which produces crisp whites from the Godella grape as well as lush reds from the Mencìa grape.
Your gastronomy adventure will take you to towns and villages that are off the beaten path. There you’ll stay in lovely pazos (inns), former manors and small quaint hotels surrounded by Galicia’s beautiful landscape and rich history. And you’ll partake of local favorites like Caldo Gallego (a delicious country soup made of beans, greens, turnips, onions and chorizo or pancetta) a meal in itself.
This is why some of Spain’s finest seafood chefs can be found in Galicia. Like Pepe Solla,Marcelo Tejedor, Iñaki Brutal or Pepe Vieira-Xose Canos to name a few.
VIEW SAMPLE ITINERARY
All itineraries can be modified to fit your travel time, budget and specific interests.
Day 01 – Santiago de Compostela
Today your transfer will greet you and drive to your elegant accommodations. This evening enjoy a welcome dinner in one of Santiago’s most established restaurants such as: Casa Marcelo where you’ll start becoming acquainted with the excellent gastronomy and wines of Galicia.
Day 02 – Santiago de Compostela
This morning, your guide will greet you and take you on a walking tour of this magnificent historic city. You’ll start your visit by the Plaza do Obradoiro, from where you’ll admire the majestic baroque towers on each side of the Cathedral dating back to the 11th century.Santiago’s Cathedral pays homage to St. James and is visited by thousands of Pilgrims each year. You’ll enter through the 9th century Portico main entrance, built by King Alfonso II. After your tour of the Cathedral walk along the roof path and take in the magnificent views of the city.
Then continue to the historic Hostal dos Reis Catolicos now a Parador and Town Hall. The historic quarter is full of narrow winding streets, lined with historic buildings and typical “tapas” bars and old restaurants that come to life in the evening. After your visit partake a delicious “comida“ lunch in one of Santiago’s best restaurants.
Day 03 – Padron / Cambados – Rias Baixas / Pontevedra
This morning you travel to the town of Padrón, kown for its small green peppers, Pimientos. They are usually served grilled or fried with olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt. They taste mild, but they also can be very spicy. The Valley of Herbón, produces over 15,000 kilos of Padrón.
This morning you travel to Cambados, along the coastal Rias Baixas, while you take in the beautiful scenery. Today you’ll visit one of the most established Bodegas (winery) in the Valley of O Salnes. As well as tour some of the vineyards that produce the highest quality of Galician Albariño wines.
Cambadosis known for its Albariño white wines. This area of Galicia provides perfect climate for the type of grape and aroma to produces an ideal Albariño wine. This excellent wine is also known as ‘the sea wine’ due to the location of the vineyards near the ocean, and for being the perfect complement to Galicia’s famed seafood. Cambados, is also known for its excellent seafood, some of it which comes from La Ria de Arousa. After an excellent comida (lunch) continue to Pontevedra.
The beautiful medieval city of Pontevedra, was built between the green Valleys surrounding it and the Tomeza and Lerez Rivers. As you walk through its old winding streets, you’ll admire their stone medieval homes and buildings, several Plazas and a Church featuring a main area shaped liked a typical Camino shell. After your visit, relax and enjoy the local gastronomy during dinner.
Day 04 – Ribadavia / Miño River
This morning you travel to the historic town of Ribadavia, which lies on the banks of the Miño River. This area is well known for its production of excellent Ribeira wines introduced by monks during the 12th century. The town’s historic buildings, Plaza Mayor and Town Hall feature an excellent example of 15th century architecture. Rivadavia was declared a historical site in 1947. Rivadavia is surrounded by part of its former town walls. There are buildings and sites of importance, where the former Jewish Quarter and Synagogue once stood.
You’ll also visit the remains of the Castillo of Sarmientos castle, where the Counts of Rivadavia once lived. Then partake of the local cuisine, before visiting other wine producing areas, full of rich vineyards covering slopping hills that follow the river.
Day 05 – Santiago de Compostela – San Sebastian
This morning your transfer will drive you to the airport for your flight to San Sebastian, the next stop in your gastronomy adventure. This itinerary has been designed to be combined with the Basque Country.