Saturday, October 3, 2009


My friends know I'm a wine head. And now so do all the expats in Madrid. Check out my article in the October issue of In Madrid, about traveling throughout Spain's wine region, La Rioja:


Monday, August 17, 2009

august. ambitious

It seems like every time I read a newspaper or blog, I see the same end-of-summer blues reiterated. The "I can't believe it's August ___ already!" exclamations. Yes, summer is winding down, and here's to looking forward to fall. Because I live according to a school-year schedule, going from college student to teacher for 2 years, and now back to student, the fall always feels like a new beginning for me. Time to reorganize, reevaluate... refurbish. Also trying to do a little cleansing, physical and spiritual. My regimen involves a lot of writing and juicing. I write to reflect on the past 2 years in Spain, and ground myself before moving on to the next adventure, and I juice to detox from the past 2 years of Spanish wine and travel. I've spent some time lingering on the site of another hispanoparlante, Gwyneth, whose site Goop is sometimes annoying, but slightly addictive. It's a little much when she puts the accent on Nestlé, in her chocolate chip cookie recipe. Who knew? Oh Gwynny, always so proper. But girlfriend does have a few good culinary tips, and invites some interesting voices to discuss her spiritual topics. Today's juice : BEET, APPLE, CARROT, CELERY, GINGER. I add this to my normal diet, which is much less Spartan than the Gwyneth plan.

I'm starting grad school at Cornell in a couple weeks and am excited to have found an adorable, bright apartment, with a little yellow kitchen on one of the hills of Ithaca. Looking at some inspirational design blogs has given me the craft bug. My mother and I have been cruising the Catskills in search of abandoned furniture, like this fabulously quirky wooden coffee table I adopted.

It was looking so forlorn on the side of the road, and I just had to give it a loving home. I've also blown the cobwebs off the basement furniture, and experimented with painting and distressing old pieces. Like this antique night table. I absolutely love the vintage knobs on the drawers.

I bought "night-sky" blue paint, crackle, and another paint that's just a touch off-white. The crackle is a clear goopy liquid that you paint on between the blue and the white, and it gives the top coat a crackly, aged look, and the bottom coat shows through the cracks. I decided on the navy/white combination, to give it a funky, chic look.

Next up: creating a headboard. I've seen some cute ideas, like this. We'll see what I come up with...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

El camino (Part II)

Asturias. Gastronomic highlight of the camino. Perhaps you're wondering why I skimmed right over San Sebastián, which receives worldwide acclaim for its gastro-culture and culinary innovation. Why have I ignored such a potentially rich material for blogging? For one thing, the world already knows the reputation of the Basque city. Then there's the post-Marrakech debility of my stomach, no details necessary.

Not to worry - Asturias, land of cheese, sidra, and fabada, merits the special attention of this blogger. Luckily, I had two things in my favor. It was sunny during my 3-day stay, a rare occurence in the north of Spain, and I was well-accompanied by a friend and writer for Spain Gourmetour, who made sure I saw and tasted all of the necessary points of interest.

I started my tour through the principality of Asturias in its capital, Oviedo. It boasts the reputation of one of the most walkable cities in all of Spain, due to its lovely pedestrian streets, one of the reasons for which Woody Allen chose to shoot his recent bomb, Vicky something or other, in Oviedo. There is even a statue dedicated to the diminuitive director on one of the pleasant streets in the city center.

Founded in the 8th century A.D., the Cathedral of San Salvador is a mixture of architectural styles, incorporating Gothic, Renaissance, and Romanesque parts. Pictured below, a statue of a random traveler admiring the cathedral.

Church of San Miguel de Lillo on Mount Naranco, dating back to 848 A.D.

Another necessary stop in Asturias is a cider bar, or sidreria. The sidreria is to Asturias what the pub is to Dublin. However, whereas beer drinking has no standard for consumption, sidra-drinking is a ritual. "Escanciar" is the verb in Spanish that refers to the particular mode of serving sidra: pouring it from way up high and holding the glass low, to make it bubbly. Otherwise, the sidra is overly sour and undrinkable. If you are in a bar, the custom is to signal to the waiter that you would like a "culín" (literally "little bum") of sidra, and he or she pours a tiny bit in the bottom of a cup, which is to be drank immediately, leaving only the tiniest sip that is then thrown to the floor in order to clean the cup for the next drinker. In Asturian tradition one cup is shared by all drinkers.

An Asturiano "escanciando" sidra

During my stay I visited my friend's country home, nestled at the bottom of gorgeous green mountains and a 10 minute walk from countless virgin beaches. Here I was invited to a very Asturian lunch: cheeses from the caves of Asturias, made with milk of Asturian cows (les vaques in Asturian dialect), sidra, and fa-ba-da. Fabada is a stew-like dish made with fava beans, lacón (pork shoulder), tocino (bacon), chorizo (sausage), morcilla (blood pudding), and spiced with saffron. The meat is stewed for a while, so that when the dish is served, the flavors mix together nicely. I'm a fan of bean-y stews, so I really enjoyed this dish, especially with a little Rioja wine. However, it is not light, summery fare, and advisable to leave yourself some siesta time before any physical activity, excepting for sidra escanciando.


3/4 kg Fava beans
1/2 kg pork shoulder
100 g bacon
2 Chorizo sausages
2 Morcillas (Blood pudding)
White onion
Olive Oil

Preparation: If you buy dried fava beans, you can begin the night before you plan to make your fabada, soaking them in water for at least 12 hours. Place the beans, pork, bacon, chorizo, morcilla, onion (cut into 2 halves), chopped garlic, whole parsley, in a covered casserole with a few glugs of olive oil. Cover all ingredients in cold water, and place over high flame. When water begins to boil, lower heat and partially uncover. While the mixture is cooking, add saffron. Once the meat is cooked, add salt to taste, then let it cook for another half hour. Remove onion and parsley, and serve with meat cut into pieces.

Monday, July 20, 2009

El camino (Part I)

As stated earlier, I decided to embark on one final voyage around and about the Iberian peninsula before returning to the states. I had planned to go to Marrakech, Burgos, and San Sebastián with my brother and sister, but from there I had no clear idea of where I would wander in the 3 weeks before my flight from Madrid to JFK. The only thing I knew for sure was that I had to make it to Santiago de Compostela, the final destination in the famous Camino de Santiago. Originally a religious pilgrimage, this is a path that traverses the northern coast of Spain, through the lush, green (rainy!) regions of Basque country, Asturias and Galicia, and culminates in the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. The result of minimal planning and paying heed to impulsive whims was an adventure from Morocco to Burgos to San Sebastián to Biarritz (Fr) to Bilbao to Oviedo to Santiago to Barcelona, and finally, back to Madrid. And despite a couple bumps in the road, like the weeklong aftermath of Moroccan cuisine, and some rainy days up north, it was an incredible way to round off my two-years in Europe.



Jake lazing away a hot afternoon on the terrace of Riad Amiris

Mint tea and fresh baked brioche served to us by the lovely French couple that owned the Riad

In short, Marrakech was intense. We stayed in the medina, a short walk to the marketplace- a giant labyrnth covered by straw to block out the north african sun, where one can easily get swallowed up for hours on end. Our riad was the perfect, tranquil retreat from the hustle and bustle outside.

Biarritz, France

Biarritz is in the south of France in the Basque region ... equal parts charming French city, surfer enclive. Perfect for a day at the beach or at a café with le journal.

Bilbao, Spain

I finally got around to visiting the Guggenheim museum. I found it an impressive, almost aggressive structure. I recently learned there is another Frank Gehry project at the Marqués de Riscal bodega in La Rioja. Funny. I just imagine a mini-guggenheim in the middle of the vineyards in Spain.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Home sweet

Back in the Catskills in upstate NY, reveling in the quiet and the crisp country air. Preparing to tell you all about my Camino de Santiago. Meanwhile, a snap I took yesterday by my grandparents' lake.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Super food

SALMOREJO. So I’m not a dietician, but I seriously believe it has restorative powers. After a long weekend of traveling, eating fried foods for dinner and pastries for breakfast, the only thing I desire in life is a chilled bowl of salmorejo. And did I mention, it’s delicious. Now that it is tomato season in España, and vine ripe tomatoes are plumper, redder, and more tantalizing then ever, it is the perfect lunch for these hot, dry afternoons. The summer schedule has started, meaning stores are closed for siesta (naptime!), and one must be an early bird and scamper on down to the market before 2:30. I will be going on one last traveling jaunt before returning to the states, which will include Morocco, Burgos, San Sebastián, Oviedo (part of the Camino de Santiago), and Santiago de Compostela, so I’ve been taking advantage (aprovechando) of my afternoons to prepare this dish a lot lately.

The basics: tomatoes, green pepper, cucumber, garlic, and olive oil... lots of aromatic, tasty, Spanish, extra virgin olive oil. I am lucky enough to live with someone that brings it back by the gallon (literally) whenever he visits his homeland of Andalusia. Sadly, the states do not have the abundance of olive trees that dot the plains over here, but a good olive oil, no matter what the cost, is a key ingredient in salmorejo. And a blender. In ancient times, I’m sure they sufficed with a stone and an earthenware bowl, but nowadays only a blender gets you the creamy consistency of this dish. Unlike gazpacho, which is thinner and generally drunk from a glass, salmorejo is served in a bowl, sprinkled with bits of hard boiled egg and chunks of jamón, and eaten with a spoon, excepting for any bowl licking at the end. It is a specialty of Cordoba, but popular throughout Andalusia. In the past, travelers would carry salmorejo in an animal horn, and drink it straight from the horn. This is not very relevant, nor interesting, but the women who works at the produce stand in my market told me, so I figured I’d share this tidbit with you.

Here you have my approximations of the ingredients – I do not have an exact recipe, and what’s more, one must experiment in order to prepare the mixture to their taste. Some like it with more of a bite (more garlic or vinegar), creamier (more olive oil, more blending), or more liquidy (more cucumbers, less bread if any). Thus I give you the outline.

For the salmorejo:
5 – 6 medium vine ripe tomatoes
1 Italian green pepper (long, thin variety)
1 small cucumber
2 cloves of garlic
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
1/8 cup white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt (or more to taste)
chunk of hard baguette (optional)

For sprinkling:
Tiny chunks of jamón iberico, or a cured meat
Hard boiled egg diced small

Peel the cucumber, quarter the tomatoes, and throw all the ingredients into your blender. Let it blend for a couple minutes, until it's a creamy, almost light consistency. It should be a bright orangish-red color. Chill and serve. You can improvise with the toppings. In Sevilla, I had salmorejo with hard boiled egg and tuna. I’ve also seen it served with avocado, shrimp, even goat cheese. If the flavor is too strong, you can use as a spread on toasted bread with a manchego cheese, or whatever you'd like. Buen provecho!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

how about a day trip?

Another good thing about living in Madrid. To see truly magnificent relics of time, and escape the bustle of urban life, all one needs to do is hop on a bus or train for an hour or two, and there you are ... visiting a 16th century monastery , or a 13th century cathedral, or as I did this past weekend, a 1st century Roman aqueduct.

The aqueduct of Segovia, which lies in the capital city of the region by the same name in Castilla y León was used to carry water from the Fuente Fría river to the city for centuries. It continued to carry water to the Alcazar castle until just recently.

This was in fact my third time making the mini-pilgrimage. Needless to say, there were other factors motivating our trip to Segovia. My Catalan traveling companion had never been before. The San Isidro festivities were taking place in Madrid, and we were seeking a little refuge. There is also the Alcazar castle, which to my dismay did not inspire the Cinderella castle, the actual Disney inspiration lying somewhere in Germany, but could pass as a Spanish cousin.

We also stopped by the 16th century gothic cathedral.

But what was the real motivation for this adventure?

Cochinillo. Vegetarians are advised to stop reading here. Roasted suckling baby pig. A gastronomic tradition so treasured by Segovians that it merits a plaque. Tell anyone in Madrid that you're going to Segovia, and they'll ask you whether you've chosen where to have a cochinillo for lunch. The last time I experienced this culinary ritual, I was with my mother. To describe my mother in brief, she's most contented with a delicious salad and a glass of white wine. To her credit, she was surprisingly adventurous during her last visit, and didn't shy away from the plates of jamón, pulpo de gallego, and other such delights that I placed before her. However, the sight of the little baby pig face that was brought to our table side as the waiter sliced into it with a plate (so tender a knife isn't necessary) was too much for her. She held back gags as she watched her youngest darling daughter crack into the crunchy skin and relish in a plate of suckling pig.

This time around, we went to Narizotas, a restaurant in the city center that was recommended by a local Segovian. We barely looked at the menu, and opted for "el menu turística" that included a first course, wine, bread, dessert, and of course, the cochi. When the first course arrived, we were a bit taken aback. What is this red soup? Wow, those are the biggest white beans I've ever seen! But wait, what are those whitish-brownish chunks floating in a pool of red? Don't tell me... tripas! They had to be that poor pig's innards. There we were, sitting on a terrace, basking in the glorious Spanish sun, and I had to choose between manning up and giving it a try, or seeming a completely uncultured American tourist. I chose the low road. The road less traveled, if you will. And it wasn't so bad to begin with. The broth is delicious, beans are a bit unnecessarily large, but also yummy. Then, in the midst of 3 pm lunch chit chat, a silence fell upon our table. It was not a pause of ecstasy. We had both taken a bite of the mysterious other at the same time and were equally appalled by the strange texture, unlike anything I've ever tasted. It took a great deal of will power and slow breathing to continue.

The second course was much less of a surprise, the cochinillo being just as good as I had remembered it, with crunchy skin protecting the juicy tender meat underneath. My lunch date was not thrilled by it, and found his piece too overwhelmingly fatty. I can't say it's something I would ever wake up craving, but as in many foods in Spain, most of the fun is taking part in the traditions, which are ingrained in the culture. Each holiday, or festival, or region boasts a special food or drink. Although consumption is part of the pleasure, the ritual and gathering of family and friends is where the real importance lies. And I am always happy to form new bonds over plates of strange food.

An inventive dessert with a Spanish touch, coconut and saffron icecream, concluded the meal, and after a walk around the quaint streets of Segovia, we were back on the bus to Madrid. Another day well-spent and in good company.

Los Judiones de la Granja con sus Tropezones

Ración de Cochinillo

Helado de Coco y Azafrán

Don't worry ... no excursions this weekend. The salmorejo recipe is still coming... hasta prontito!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

seeing is believing at the feria

Overwhelmed. In a good way. This is how I felt when entering the feria of Sevilla. By the array of colors, the dresses, the horses and carriages, the dancing, the casetas, the rebujitos...

Fresh off the train from Madrid, we dropped off our baggage and went straight to the feria. It's difficult to process the visual stimuli of the feria on one's first time. Immediately you are bombarded with a million things to look at. Stunning women, each one wearing an unique flamenco dress in eye-popping colors and patterns, amble down streets where horse drawn carriages circle around, and people are going in and out of casetas. The casetas are tents that line the streets of the feria. Now if you're like me, "party tent" conjures up images of bar mitzvahs inside plain white tents with plastic white table cloths. Also being 13 years old and doing the electric slide. In Sevilla, it is anything but. It's quite the posh ordeal, really. Private groups rent casetas for the entire week, and they are lavishly decorated and replete with bar and food to order. Doormen stand guard at the entrances to protect these exclusive worlds from the commoners outside.This lady was stunning

So cute it hurts
The feria at night

I was lucky to have gone with my own Sevillano to get me into many of the casetas. Inside... there is dancing, family, and rebujito! Pitcher after pitcher of rebujito, which is a mixture of manzanilla, a sherry wine produced in Andalucia, and sprite. It goes down dangerously easy, causing some unanticipated disequilibiurm when exiting the casetas.

But there was much more to the feria than just drinking. Eating too. All day we picked at plates of Andalusian tapas that were passed around. To make you envious:

Puntillitas (fried baby squid)

Jamón serrano, queso manchego, caña de lomo (cured pork loin)

Tortilla de patatas con verduras (potato omelet with vegetables)

Espárragos con jamón (asparagus with jamon and crunchy sea salt)

And lest we forget the churros con chocolate at 6 am on the way home:

And perhaps most important of all - the sevillano dancing. It is a partner dance that has four sections, and involves graceful turns, spins, and hand movements for the women. It's a beautiful tradition to watch. And seemingly simple, but guess again. Yes, I attempted a dance or two. Never have I felt so ungraceful and uncoordinated, and not because of the rebujito. To my defense, the girls start dancing sevillano style when they are teeny.

With all the socializing at the feria, I got to practice my Andaluz, the Andalusians being famous for their distinct accent and manner of speaking, sometimes causing difficulty for even native speakers of Castellano. To elaborate.

Saturated. Exhausted. This is how I felt after 2 days of the feria. Pablo's parents were kind enough to invite us all to their home in the village of Gines for a delicious paella mixta, with seafood (mussels, shrimp, calamares), chicken, and some veggies, including artichokes, which I had never had before in a paella. The main ingredients in any paella are rice, safron (giving it the deep golden color), olive oil, and a meat or fish, although this isn't absolutely necessary. Last summer, I worked in the countryside in Valencia, where paella is from. Many people think that paella is a typical Spanish food, but it's actually a Valencian specialty. One day a woman that ran a hostel there prepared us paella in an enormous pan called a paellera, with rabbit, chicken, and fresh rosemary. One thing I've learned from eating many paellas is you must scrape the burnt rice from the bottom of the paellera when serving, because this part is reeeally tasty.

Our meal was followed by a much needed siesta. After watching Real Madrid lose to Barcelona in a soccer match, we returned to the city, freshened up, and went out for a late dinner. With all the people in the feria, it was a very atypically quiet Saturday night in Sevilla. We ventured to a spot of my friend Peter, who studied in Sevilla during college. It's a little place called Bar Alfalfa that's always crowded with people, and only has standing room. They prepare Andalusian foods with an Italian twist, such as bread topped with buffalo cheese, salmorejo, and bits of jamon. Sounds a little strange, the combination, but it was yummy. Although I would probably love salmorejo in any arrangement. With a tapa of plump olives and a plate of thin slices of jamón with parmesan and rucula, it was a perfect way to round off a very intense weekend.

During the 6 hour bus ride back I was going over all of the things I had to share with you, and realized it would be selfish if I were to withhold Pablo's recipe for salmorejo, which I am becoming an expert at preparing ... I will leave you hanging for now, but go buy your tomatoes, cucumbers, garlic, olive oil, and green peppers, and I'll show you how to make it this week. Hasta pronto.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Sneak Preview

Hello good folks! Spring has finally arrived... ahhh! The season for cañas (mini glasses of beer) on terraces, long walks, lots of snaps, and yes, picnics. Yesterday I shared an elaborate lunch with a group of friends in the park, Templo de Debod. For the event, I prepared crustless cucumber sandwiches with fresh mint, and substituted feta for the cream cheese that most recipes call for. Not Spanish at all, but it was a crowd pleaser. Plus we opened a couple of bottles of the wine we bought in El Fabulista bodega in La Rioja, and did a little tasting during some intense games of Uno.

I love how Spanish people always talk about "aprovechando" or taking advantage of good weather ... it's such a fabulous word, "aprovechar". Yes, we English speakers have the phrasal verb "to take advantage", but it's not as sweetly succinct as the Spanish translation. In any case, any time the sun comes out, people flock to terraces and parks, and I am all about this custom.

I just wanted to let you know that I'm going to Sevilla next weekend with my Sevillano flatmate for the April feria. It's a week long fiesta that began in 1846 as a livestock fair, but nowadays is all about comer, beber, bailar, drink, dance. I've been to Sevilla once before, and I can solidly say that overall it has my favorite Spanish regional cuisine, that is, Andalusian food. I used to be obsessed with Basque food, but it's so rich and complicated that it's not something I could eat every day. But between salmorejo, espinacas con garbanzo, seafood, jamón, and olives, I think I could live a happy life in Andalucia. Maybe that's why the people from there have so much chutzpeh! Anyway, as if the eating, drinking, and dancing weren't exciting enough, there's also the fashion. (Olé!) Women wear flamenco dresses and men the traditional short jackets, tight trousers, and boots. The second hand store across the street from my apartment has children's flamenco dresses in the window and I was thinking about buying one because I am petite enough to fit into children's clothes, but decided I'd rather look like a plainclothes foreigner than a bootleg-flamenco-dancer foreigner. But don't worry, I'll take plenty of snaps to show you the best and the delicious worst on the fashion front. Hasta la próxima!

Monday, April 13, 2009


I’d like to toast to the birth of our baby blog by sharing with you a few stories from my most exciting recent adventure … a trip to La Rioja, one of the most important wine producing regions in Spain. (Warning to the reader: please excuse my Spanglish whenever it may pop out. After almost 2 years of speaking Spanish and teaching English, it is inevitable.) Anyway, La Rioja. Wow, I mean seriously wow. I am trying to learn as much as I can about wine while living in Madrid, because I truly do love it… the smells, the tastes, the varieties. As Hemingway once wrote about bullfighting, “…every year I know there is more to learn, but I know some things which may be interesting now…” I too feel that the more I learn the more I realize there remains to learn, and I still have a very elementary knowledge, but I picked up some interesting tidbits during my tours and tastings, so I’ll spill.

Two friends, Allida and Jen, and I decided to rent a car and drive to La Rioja to explore vineyards and taste local specialties. (Shout out to Europcar!) This region, a few hours north of Madrid, is known for its morcilla (Spanish version of blood pudding – big fan), white asparagus (not a fan), patatas a la riojana, and of course, the vino. And as the old men teachers at my school say (solemnly) “Se come bien y barato”. One eats well and cheap! We planned to stop at a couple vineyards, spend the night in Burgos, then wander through a couple pueblos (villages) the next day as we slowly made our satiated way back to Madrid.

Off we were! First stop was a charming little pueblo called Haro, with cobblestone streets and breathtaking views of the valley. A few cafes in a plaza, walking, taking some snaps, and we were ready for our first taste of morcilla. Mmmorcilla is made with blood, rice, onion, and importantly, pimentón, giving it a distinctive spice. It must have been thrown on the grill in the small bar-restaurant where we stopped, because it was served hot and fresh, and we gobbled it up on top of flaky hunks of bread. Accompanied of course by glasses of Rioja wine.

Second stop was Las Bodegas Bilbainas, where we took a two-hour tour that was extremely thorough. Our gracious guide was in no hurry, and shared extra stories with our group. Here I learned a bit more about the grapes used in Spain (mostly Garnacha and Tempranillo) and the classifications of wine. There are four types, depending on how long the wine is aged: Tinto Joven, or Cosecha, which spends no time in the barrel, Crianza (six months in the barrel), Reserva (one year in the barrel and at least two in the bottle), and Gran Reserva (two years in the barrel and at least three in the bottle). Afterward, we sampled two wines, a Joven and a Crianza. We were kind enough to finish off the bottles that our fellow visitors left behind (waste not, want not), and got to chatting with our guide. On his recommendation, we nixed the Burgos plan and headed to Logroño,the capital of La Rioja, where Universidad de la Rioja is located. We spent a fabulous night drinking more wine (with the car parked, Jen our DD could fully enjoy… poor girl was the only one capable of handling a stick-shift), and eating pintxos (Basque tapas) in the many bars and restaurants that fill the tiny streets in the city center.

Day 2 began with, well, surprisingly no headache, and cafe con leche in a bar. 9:30 AM, and already an old man was having a glass of red. Incredible… intense. We head out on the open road, and decided to stop off at Laguardia, a recommendation from a teacher at the school where I work. We planned to stay the morning, but upon arriving there was what looked like a bake sale taking place in the teeny main plaza. Well, there were local moms alright, but they were selling cups of Rioja with a pintxo for 1 euro. We had to take advantage. One cata (tasting) and a full wine tour later at La Bodega El Fabulista we were ready for lunch. At this point we decided to treat ourselves to a proper meal, and picked an appetizing menu del dia (3 course meal with wine included). I botched the first course (asparago con 3 salsas which turned out to be the white asparagus which I do not have much liking for… served with mayonnaise as usual), but Jen chose wisely, opting for the patatas a la Riojana. It was garlicky red stew, with potatoes and chunks of chorizo. I got back on track with a solid order of lamp chops, perfectly cooked, bone-sucking good. That sounds crude, but when it’s that good you just have to pick up the bone and go to it. We sat in the sun for an hour, allowed digestion to take place, then popped in the mixed CD and headed back down the winding road to Madrid. It was a trip I would like to repeat again and again. Only next time, promise Jen, I’ll learn to drive a manual beforehand. Salud!

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Well, hello there stranger. We are Mary Alice and Cait, two sisters who are into eating, drinking, and exploring our feelings. Ok, the last part is a joke. (Or is it?) Our plan is to report on the local tastes that our respective cities have to offer. Cait lives in Madrid. Mary Alice in Dallas. So get ready for jamón and queso, darlins.

¡Que aproveche!