with gayle in granada


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E3907C28-E25C-4BFA-84CC-44AE10E9FB15Back in February I finally met Gayle from @GranadaTapasTours聽in person when she visited Sevilla with her family. So it was great to meet up again on her home turf last night and be taken out on a private tapas tour.

We stopped in at four fabulous bars that I鈥檇 never been to before, and each one was unique (and delicious). Of course Gayle personally knew the owners and told us the history of each bar and also some interesting anecdotes and info about Granada. Thanks for such a fun evening Gayle!

the usual suspects


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Most tapas bars open at 1 pm for lunch service, though some also open for breakfast, with a short break between tostadas and tapas. But Casa Morales is a bit different, opening each day at 12 o’clock. This is always my favourite time to go, usually for a quick beer and a tortilla, which I like to think of as “brunch”. 馃槈

It’s also an interesting time because there are a few groups of regulars that come in between 12-1.00 for a beer, a snack or two, and a chinwag. Meanwhile the bar staff are still setting up, the kitchen is doing final prep stuff, so it’s both active and quiet at the same time. These gentlemen are some of the 12-1.00 regulars and I love them. They can get quite boisterous at times, and I find myself wondering about their lives, what they are doing when they’re not here. The spell is broken a bit before 1 pm when the first round of tourists show up (still too early for Sevillanos to come out for lunch). By then it’s also time for me to move on and get on with my morning.



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Not the way I thought Friday was going to turn out. And nope, this isn’t mine. Got a message from Peter in the morning saying that his laptop (the venerable Greyhound that he inherited from me a few years ago) seemed to have died. So he brought the beast over and we tried to resuscitate, but to no avail. And so there was nothing left to do but go shopping!

Luckily the summer sales are on now and so, after a bit of comparison shopping at FNAC and Corte Ingl茅s, Peter settled on this guy and we spent the afternoon/evening at my place getting it set up. As nothing was retrievable from the Greyhound it meant starting from scratch, and losing some photos, but Peter doesn’t have as much crap on his computer as I do, so it was relatively easy. And fun! I love doing this stuff (and Peter doesn’t) and even after he left I stayed up doing a bit more fine-tuning. Now it’s all ready for Peter to take home.

Checking back, I got the Greyhound in July 2012, and my present laptop Sterling in September 2015. So I hope there are still a few good years left for Sterling. How long do your laptops usually last? Also, what can I do with the old dead ones?

tur铆smo & gastronom铆a


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On Thursday (July 12) I was fortunate enough to be one of the invitees to the Hi Southern Tourism Meeting session on Tourism and Gastronomy (quite an honour, as I was, as far as I know, the only non-Spanish person present), a recognition of the growing importance of food tourism to both these sectors.

The venue was in what is now the Carriage Museum (since 1999), which was built during the 16-17th centuries as a Carmelite convent, and later served as the seat of the Spanish-Cuban Institute of History. Once a landmark, it was overshadowed by the apartment blocks of Los Remedios in the 1940s.

The event was hosted by local newspaper, the ABC, and introductions were made by editor Javier Rubio. The first presentation was given by Marcos Taranc贸n, of the Fundaci贸n Cruzcampo, showing their project to convert the old Cruzcampo factory in Nervi贸n into a new tourist attraction for the city with caf茅s, restaurants and a large open garden space. The second was by Irene de Castro for Gonzalez Byass and the V Tio Pepe Festival, coming up in August at their bodega in Jerez.

This was followed by two round table discussions chaired by Isabel Aguilar of GURME.es, the first featuring local restauranteurs Juanlu Dorado (Ca帽abota), Juan G贸mez (La Azotea), and Gonzalo Jurado (Tradevo) on the challenges of operating in a city with large numbers of tourists, and the second with Benjamin Lana of Madrid Fusi贸n and I帽igo Iribarnegaray of San Sebasti谩n Gastron贸mika, two cities that have become well known for food tourism.

Afterwards there was an opportunity to meet some of the participants, and other friends in the hospitality industry, over snacks and coffee.

Thanks as always to ABC Sevilla and sponsors of the event (CaixaBank, City Expert, CitySightseeing, Fundaci贸n Cruzcampo, MA Abogados) for a useful and interesting morning.

Also posted on Azahar Sevilla



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It occurred to me yesterday that this week I’m actually ON HOLIDAY! Well, not totally, as I am still catching up on photo editing and reviews for Sevilla Tapas, and I am also finishing a magazine article I was asked to write… but no tours this week. I guess I should be concerned, but it’s actually fine. Gives me time to work on other projects, and my fab We Love Tapas team continues to be amazing. So I am good with this.

And so since this past weekend I’ve been focusing on getting THOSE WALKS in, at least 10,000 steps a day. Today’s walk culminated with this gorgeously fresh lemon sorbet and cava dessert at Becerrita, where we’d stopped in for a tapita. Everyone who knows me knows that I (almost) never eat desserts. I’m (almost) totally a savoury person. But combining cava with super tart lemony sorbet? I’m in. Especially when dessert is on the house, as this one is at Becerrita until the end of this week. Score!

missing the dude


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Been missing this lovely guy so much. It’s hard to walk by his usual spots, like here in the Plaza Santa Cruz, or around the corner in the Jardines de Murillo, and not see him there, basking in the sun like a king. Luckily I can still visit him from time to time at Beatriz’s place, and he is so lucky that she took him in last winter. But not seeing him where he belongs is still sad. Is this why people create shrines? I think it would actually be a good idea…