This weekend I finally had my first taste of the famous Tapas I had heard so much about. For those of you who don’t know Tapas are a wide array of Spanish appetizers that can be served cold or hot and are always served with a beverage, usually a beer or sangria. Some of the appetizers include Patatas Bravas (potato wedges), Croquetas (small fried balls usually filled with cheese, ham or fish), and Montaditos (small sandwiches).
The name Tapas comes from a derivation of Tapar, which means to cover in Spanish. From what I heard from the restaurant owner, the name was given to the dish because in order to cook the meat that was used they needed to cover it, or tapar, with a pot lid. Once the meat was ready they would serve it on top of bread and use the pot lid as the serving plate.
Nowadays it is very common to go to a Tapas Bar to buy a drink for roughly 6 euros and enjoy all you can eat tapas. One thing that really surprised me was that there was no where to sit. I looked around for a chair or a stool and there were non to be found. I asked a local why there were no chairs and as he laughed he explained that this was not a formal dinner thing, this is where one hangs out and eats before dinner while walking around and talking with your friends. So as I stood there eating my delicious tapas and sipping on my sangria I looked around and I decided to take the local’s advice and I began to talk with the people around me. As it turns out we met a large group of American students who were also studying abroad.
As you can see from the picture, at one point we had so much food we had it stacked on top of other food. That is what I call the best dang happiness you can have for 6 euros! Among the many things I will miss when I go back to the States, this will definitely be in my top 10.