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Pedro and Alejandro Romero

You may remember when I was at the Foodie Hub Awards in Marbella last summer and was thrilled that my choice for Essential Traditional Tapa – the amazing pringá montadito at Bodeguita Romero – took home one of the awards. Well, you should have seen Pedro Romero’s face light up when he saw it – it was like a million suns came out.

Then a few days later I was in the bar and didn’t see the award. When I mentioned it to Pedro he said it was in the office (across the street) because they’d been taking some more photos of it. But a few days later I also didn’t see it, in fact, I hadn’t seen it since the day I brought it over. And I’m at Bodeguita Romero all the time! Either with tapas tours, or just for a pringá.

Anyhow, during another visit a couple of months later Pedro came over to me and asked if he could speak to me in private. And with a very serious look on his face he led me to their office. And then he spilled the beans.

What had happened was that – on the very day I’d taken over the award to them – just after I’d left the bar, Pedro had proudly handed it to his wife Angeles so she could admire it… and it slipped out of her hands (she’d been working with a sprained wrist, so her grip wasn’t as strong as usual). It fell to the floor and, well, totally shattered.

It took all that time for Pedro to come up with the courage to tell me that their precious award had been shattered on the same day they’d received it, and then Angeles came in and showed me her wrist (still in a bandage), saying she hadn’t meant to drop it. And then both Angeles and Pedro asked if it might be possible to have another one sent to them, because all they had to show for it now was the one Instagram photo I’d sent them (which they actually printed and framed!).

Honestly, I was almost in tears when Angeles showed me her bandaged wrist and then Pedro held out the broken award, saying they’d tried to fix it but it was sadly beyond repair (understatment! it was all in shardy bits, but he still hadn’t thrown it away). So I got in touch with the gang at Foodie Hub and got a swift reply – no problem at all with ordering a new trophy for the Romeros, but as it would be a special order it might take some time. I told Alejandro Romero the good news and he said not to say anything to his parents because he wanted it to be a surprise.

By happy chance the award arrived while I was in Málaga – just in time for Christmas! And as you can see by the smiles of those two happy chaps up there (Pedro and Alejandro Romero) it was indeed a special “Christmas gift” to receive. As for Angeles, she is even more camera shy than I am and refused to be in the photo. But she gave me a BIG hug and promised not to pick up the trophy again (haha!). Serious feel good moment. A million thanks to Foodie Hub for this lovely and very generous effort. Oh, and here is THE pringá montadito. You know you want one…