Tabla Ibérica

The Tabla Ibérica represents a classic dish from Spain. It features meats and cheeses that are all delicious on their own. Together, they’re a culinary delight. Here’s an example I enjoyed recently:

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Wow, what a feed! Fortunately, this was shared with other people as part of a great meal. If there’s one thing the Spanish have mastered, it is cured meats. Enjoy this with a favorite wine and you’re good to go. Tan bueno!

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Supper, Villa de Ábalos, Spain

While staying overnight at the Hotel Villa de Ábalos, I highly recommend eating supper there. When you make your reservation, be sure to let them know you would like to dine as well. It is a truly home-cooked, Spanish meal. The menu changes with the seasons and the availability of fresh ingredients. Here is the carta as provided during my visit:

Menu for supper at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

Menu for supper at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

These little gems were presented to start the meal:

A little something to start the meal at Hotel Villa de Ábalos, Spain.

A little something to start the meal at Hotel Villa de Ábalos, Spain.

The two appetizers were creative and delicious. The first was a leeks and spinach terrine that you see in the next photo:

Leek and spinach terrine appetizer at Hotel Villa de Ábalos, Spain.

Leek and spinach terrine appetizer at Hotel Villa de Ábalos, Spain.

The other appetizer was a sautéed vegetable medley that I was so anxious to eat, I forgot to snap a photo. But, next came the entrée, and what a fantastic one it was. Slowly cooked oxtail then removed from the bone and placed inside a sort of dumpling with a very nice sauce, as you see in the next photo:

Oxtail presented inside a dumpling for supper at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

Oxtail presented inside a dumpling for supper at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

This incredible meal was finished with a warm almond cake and vanilla ice-cream that truly hit the spot:

Warm almond cake with vanilla ice-cream at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

Warm almond cake with vanilla ice-cream at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

All this was served in a pleasant dining room you see here:

Dining room at Hotel Villa de Ábalos, Spain.

Dining room at Hotel Villa de Ábalos, Spain.

I would also like to mention the owner of this fine hotel makes his own wine, which is very good, especially the white. A bottle with dinner or afterwards is a great addition to the meal. Here’s a photo of the bottle:

Preferred wine at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

Preferred wine at Hotel Villa de Ábalos.

When traveling, be sure to enjoy the local cuisine as much as possible.

Joséphine, Barcelona (restaurant)

Located in an upscale neighborhood on Pau Claris, Joséphine delivers atmosphere from a bygone age, complete with live music, fine food, and a great bar.

Joséphine, located on Pau Claris, Barcelona, Spain.

Joséphine, located on Pau Claris, Barcelona, Spain.

Seating inside and out provides options for all. I took a seat inside for supper one evening.

Dining room at Joséphine, Barcelona, Spain.

Dining room at Joséphine, Barcelona, Spain.

Tasty and well-presented food arrives thanks to a friendly staff. I tried a special of the night, which was a tenderloin served atop hot coals with artichokes and peppers:

Tenderloin atop hot coals at Joséphine, Barcelona, Spain.

Tenderloin atop hot coals at Joséphine, Barcelona, Spain.

This dish was excellent because the coals stayed hot for quite a while, enabling me to let the meat cook to exactly my style. Of course, dessert was a must. Take a look at this chocolate cake and ice-cream:

Chocolate cake with ice cream at Joséphine, Barcelona, Spain.

Chocolate cake with ice cream at Joséphine, Barcelona, Spain.

As sometimes happens, I was too busy eating and talking to photograph the starter salads, one Caesar, one mixed, both fresh, crispy, and delicious. Had a few cocktails after the meal while enjoying a woman singer who provided entertainment. And the people watching here is another bonus. A great experience while visiting Barcelona.

Jaime Beriestain, restaurant, Barcelona, Spain

Jaime Beriestain Restaurant sports an upscale, cool vibe, with many dishes you’ll recognize, yet they have an updated flair. Here’s a look at the exterior with seating on the sidewalk:

Jaime Beriestain Restaurant, Barcelona, Spain.

Jaime Beriestain Restaurant, Barcelona, Spain.

Here’s a look at the seating inside:

Inside seating at Jaime Beriestain Restaurant, Barcelona, Spain.

Inside seating at Jaime Beriestain Restaurant, Barcelona, Spain.

The green salad you see next was bursting with flavor and the crunch of fresh vegetables:

Green salad at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

Green salad at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

And here’s their take on patatas bravas:

Patatas bravas at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

Patatas bravas at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

There were two sauces for the patatas bravas. I though the red one needed more zing. Then there was the plate of jamón iberico, which was very good indeed:

Jamón iberico at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

Jamón iberico at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

Service was generally detached and inattentive. I would have appreciated better service. However, the food is very creative, including the sweets that are worth tasting and maybe taking some home:

Sweets at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

Sweets at Jaime Beriestain, Barcelona, Spain.

If you’re looking for a creative meal, this may be the place, if you don’t mind waiters who may be otherwise occupied.