From my friend Jessica, ‘PAIS VASCO (BASQUE COUNTRY). This whole area is famous for pintxos, which are NOT tapas (do not call them that!!), but rather small bites all on one toothpick. It’s really an art and the Basques pride themselves on it.’
My travel journal describes a bar in Bilbao as ‘peen-shos swirling – whirling around me‘. I see I was madly sketching, in an effort to keep track of the amazing creations that were laid before me, all of them free!
‘meat (veal), sprouts, raspberry jam, mushrooms’
‘bread, deep-fried dark and mushy (gooey) mushroom pate inside, red pimento’
‘crepe wrapped around a sausage’ ‘pickled green bean, yellowy-white goo, anchovy, deep-fried(?) crunchy shallots’
‘white cheese, avocado, tomato, lettuces’Not illustrated but a classic ‘tapa’ of omelette garnished with a roasted pepper called ‘pimientos de padrón’, simple and one of my faves.
Trying to eat, sketch and take photos amidst all that action was not easy. I notice that my glass of beer remains full in all my photos – highly unusual for me!
I loved this pintxo and thought it was mainly slivers of mushrooms. Later I realized that what I thought were mushrooms were actually gulas, baby eels and tasty. Sorry, no photo, but by now I had almost given up trying to keep up with the whirling pintxos (pronounced peen-shos).Also not illustrated, a trio of pintxos from a different bar.
Ice-cold Amstel beer, the tap covered with ice, along with even more pintxos.
This was our typical dinnertime in Bilbao – absolute delicious chaos. And, as an added bonus, we were there during ‘National Day’ which was a street fiesta of eating, drinking, dancing and singing.
More of the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenges: Dinnertime