A Taste of Spain Edinburgh is a feast for the senses
Edinburgh Spotlight headed to The Mound today to check out Scotland’s Spanish fiesta, “A Taste of Spain”.
The event, which takes place again tomorrow, Sunday 25th, from 10.30am to 5pm, has something for everyone, and shows just how diverse a country Spain is, from Galicia in the north-west, to the white villages of Andalucia in the south, the Balearic islands of Mallorca, Menorca and Ibiza, and the Canary Islands of Gran Canaria, Tenerife, Lanzarote and Fuerteventura; not forgetting Valencia on the mainland, home of Spain’s beloved paella.
For those who are not well acquainted with Spain or who think it’s just sun, sea and sand, a visit to “A Taste of Spain” will convince you otherwise and give you a glimpse of the country’s hidden gems – and an appetite for more.
Without doubt one of the highlights of the day was the giant paella cooked by two friendly Valencian chefs Vicente and Pepe and offering up some of the great natural produce of the Valencian region – a labour of love, feeding five hundred people, and made with 50 kilos of Valencian rice and 20 litres of Valencian water! Made with Spanish olive oil, chicken, green beans and saffron, it was well worth the wait, and absolutely delicious, judging by the queues of locals and tourists alike who waited patiently for around 45 minutes to sample the delights.
Ibiza provided plenty of colour with “Foc I Fum” or “fire and smoke”, a couple who wowed everyone with their glamorous jewel-coloured costumes, towering above us and directing us to more delights of islands Mallorca and Menorca.
Golf lovers could try their luck with the golf simulator from Lanzarote and Fuerteventura and the friendly people on the Lanzarote and Fuerteventura stand were happy to tell us more about their islands, with year-round sunshine and loads of water sports, as well as being a haven for golf-loving Scots.
In celebration of Spain’s recent world-cup football win, John Farnworth, the World Freestyle champion was on hand to wow us with his football moves whilst Mallorcan pipers, the “Xeremiers” provided an unusual alternative to our more familiar sounding Scots bagpipes.
The Galician stand proved very popular due to the liqueur tasting and “Santiago stones” – traditional chocolates with almonds. We tried various liqueurs – the herb and coriander liqueurs were delicious. Galician band BoNoVo played some fine celtic folk tunes to get everyone in a festive mood.
Another favourite was the Andalucia stand. With over 300 hundred days of sunshine a year, stunning cities including Granada and Seville and numerous local festivals, Andalucia is a firm favourite for exploring. Locals and tourists alike queued up to sample the delights of fino sherry, poured from a traditional sherry pourer, who continued to smile despite the long queues. We also sampled some traditional Spanish ham and cheese and enjoyed some vibrant flamenco music and dance from Peña Camaron de la Isla.
We learned that Tenerife has so much more to offer than just a beach holiday – whale watching, sailing, trekking and star-gazing are just some of the options – and foodies will love to find out about Canary Island “mojos” – or spicy sauces – typical of Canary Island cuisine, and made with cumin, garlic, hot peppers, or coriander. We’re looking forward to trying the recipe for traditional coriander “mojo”.
With competitions to win a week’s holiday in Mallorca, a golf break in Lanzarote, and a holiday in Gran Canaria, including a fun photo-shoot on the Gran Canaria stand – with a range of digital backdrops to “transport” us to the destination, there was plenty to entertain us all afternoon.
Head for a Taste of Spain tomorrow for a great day out, or visit the website for more details.